Should the Church Be "Seeker Friendly"?
Anyone that knows me, knows that I am passionate about seeing people saved and discipled. This January, my husband and I launched Salt Churches in our home. We have gathered for three weeks and it’s growing quicker than we expected. We share a meal together, worship, prophecy and study The Word. It’s incredible to watch people come alive while they are learning how to follow Jesus.
As we are growing, so many questions are arising. When should we branch off and start the next Salt Church? When is someone ready to make disciples? How do we define worship? All the fun questions that a new church plant wrestles with. We’ve never seen church gather in this way so we are totally seeking The Holy Spirits leading on the “model” since we don’t have an example besides what we read in Acts.
The first gathering, we had neighbors join that were not Christians. Afterwards, my husband and I discussed how to be “more seeker friendly.” We decided to read The Bible and seek God for the solution.
So the first question - well, what is Church? After doing some study this is what I found:
The word “church” comes from the Greek word ekklesia which is defined as “an assembly” or “called-out ones.” The root meaning of “church” is not that of a building, but of people. It is ironic that when you ask people what church they attend, they usually identify a building. Romans 16:5 says “… greet the church that is in their house.” Paul refers to the church in their house—not a church building, but a body of believers. According to the Bible, the church is the body of Christ—all those who have placed their faith in Jesus Christ for salvation (John 3:16; 1 Corinthians 12:13). Local churches are gatherings of members of the larger Church Body.
Okay – so if the Church defined is the body of believers then should your Church be seeker friendly? I believe the answer is yes and no.
I believe that when the Church gathers whether it be on Sunday, Wednesday or every other Saturday it is meant to equip the believers, to spur one another on, worship God, and to make disciples. (Ephesians 4:12, Hebrews 10:24, Ephesians 5:18-19, Matthew 28)
As followers of Jesus and members of The Church we are personally “seeker friendly.” If you asked me a few years ago – if I believed Sunday Service was the place for salvation I would have screamed “Yes! Of Course!” and argued with you till I was purple. I’ve personally led many people to Jesus during a Sunday service (if they are still following Jesus, well that’s another question) – however, I no longer believe Sunday’s church gathering is the place to be seeker friendly.
When The Church is gathering and effectively equipped – than being “seeker friendly” and reaching the lost happens everyday! We have become too accustomed to “inviting someone to church” as our evangelism plan. We as followers of Jesus have believed the lie that the preacher needs to do the alter call while we pray for our unsaved friend sitting next to us. It’s more than that!
If you are a follower of Jesus, The same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead lives in you and not just your pastor!
When we effectively make disciples – disciples will share the Gospel with the Lost. A church gathering that simply helps existing believers become better Christians without also sharing the gospel with unbelievers is not a disciple making church. Evangelism and baptism are the essential starting point of making disciples.
So, we decided to do just that. On Sunday, Parker and I brought two of our disciples to an outdoor shopping mall. We showed them how to prophecy over strangers and share the Gospel of Jesus. We laughed and came alive as we participated in intentionally reaching the Lost and loving our neighbors.
Church leaders – take a moment and examine your body of believers. Are they being equipped to plant churches, teach, prophecy, pastor their friends, and preach the Gospel? If not, I’d encourage you to hit pause on your next marketing print out to “reach the lost” and pray about how to make disciples of Jesus and equip them to be “seeker friendly” everyday.