Cell Groups and the Great Commission

September is Missions Month at Landstown. We will be paying particular attention to what our role is in fulfilling Jesus’ command to His disciples to “make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:19-20).

Those of us who are committed to the development of cell groups as a vital part of who we are as a church are often criticized for emphasizing the creation of cell groups to the exclusion of other ministry opportunities. Although this criticism may be valid in some situations, we must emphasize that we believe that creating, developing, growing, and multiplying cell groups is the most effective way that we can fulfill Jesus’ command to disciple all the nations.

At this point, I am inserting comments made by Joel Comiskey, one of the foremost experts in the cell church field, in his blog dated 08/29/2013, taken from his book Myths and Truths of the Cell Church.

“Scripture is clear in Matthew 28:18-20 that the church is called to make disciples. Jesus never told the church to go and start cells. Rather, he told them to make disciples in (of) all nations.

“Some people think I’m too fanatical about cells. I surprise them when I tell them I’m not passionate about cells in and of themselves. Rather, my focus is on making disciples. God’s purpose is to make disciples who make other disciples.

“So what does this have to do with the cell? I believe the cell is the best vehicle to make disciples who make other disciples (multiplication).

“Jesus himself modeled this truth to the world when he chose twelve men and then lived in a small community with them for three years. He discipled his twelve in an environment  where he could give plenty of practical instructions and interact with them.

“Much of Christ’s teaching was show and tell, and as the disciples matured, they were able to lead the church.

“The disciples continued to make other disciples in that same environment. When the Spirit of God descended on the day of Pentecost, the disciples were in the upper room of a house in Jerusalem. The Spirit came down in a powerful way, and the disciples of Jesus began to meet from house to house. Believers met in houses where they could love one another, practice hospitality and continue the work of Jesus. Although their time with the Master influenced them to meet from house to house, it was also part of their Jewish heritage from the time of Jethro’s counsel to Moses to break up into groups of ten.

“The same disciples who were nourished in house-to-house ministry spread the gospel by planting house churches and connecting them to celebration gatherings when possible (Acts 2:42-46).”

If we examine the role of “cell” groups in the development of the early church, we will find that the church grew so rapidly in those early years because the presence of Jesus in the small group meetings inspired those who participated to reach out to others within their “oikoses” or circles of influence and impact them for the Kingdom of God. They weren’t concerned mainly with growing their churches like so many pastors are today. They simply wanted to share what Jesus was accomplishing in their lives with those with whom they related closely on a daily basis. In doing so, they made disciples who made other disciples.

Categories Pastors Blog | Tags: | Posted on August 29, 2013

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