Why plant churches? Tony Merida answers:
- In order to align ourselves with the purposes of God. God’s purpose is not merely to bring individuals to heaven (Acts 18:9f), but to gather a people – a diverse, global people – to himself. When we plant churches, we are doing what God has always been doing.
- Because the Great Commission points to church planting. To ‘make disciples of all nations’ by ‘baptising them’ and ‘teaching them’ is to incorporate new believers into the life of a church (Mt 28:18-20). It is, in other words, to plant a gathering of believers and feed and nurture them so that they will learn to obey Christ in every way.
- Because the New Testament church was largely a collection of church plants. Acts tells the story of these churches, and the epistles show how the apostles led and taught them. Church planting is the very air we breath in the pages of Scripture.
- Because Paul’s strategy for ministry and mission was urban church planting. Time and again we read of the establishment of churches in important cities, of the appointment of elders, and of instruction given to the new members (see Acts 14:21-23). When Paul had done this in one place, he moved on to the next place, relying on the churches he had planted to spread the gospel in their surrounding areas.
Based on Tony Merida, Love Your Church, pp153-156.