Response to the House-Church Movement: Introduction
Written by Keith Throop
Recently I have encountered a growing number of my fellow believers who have become enamored with the House-Church Movement. These believers are Baptistic and hold to the Doctrines of Grace, but they have become disillusioned with the current state of the church and have become convinced that the work of reformation begun in the sixteenth century has not been taken far enough. These believers have pointed me to a couple of websites that have been influential in their new thinking: House-Church.org and the New Testament Reformation Foundation .
Today I want to introduce a series of posts in which I will interact with and respond to some of the primary emphases of the House-Church Movement. First, I will take up the requirement to meet in houses for worship. Second, I will respond to the argument for fully participatory worship, in which no one leads but each contributes in a spontaneous manner. Third, I will respond to the argument that the Lord’s Supper may only be rightly observed if the the context of a “full meal.” And, fourth, I will discuss the matter of elder leadership and authority.
I will only be dealing briefly in the weeks ahead with each of the subjects I have listed, but I hope to at least outline a preliminary response to what appear to be the major emphases of the movement. I will restrict my interaction to writings available at the two aforementioned websites, given that these are the sites that have been most influential to those with whom I have dealt. Please check back in the coming weeks for the rest of this series.