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Puritan Porn & Church Planting Fever, part 2

Puritan Porn & Church Planting Fever, Part 2

by Pastor Scott Thomas, Acts 29 Director

 

I received an email from an unmarried young man under the age of 22 wishing to plant a church. In an attempt to address a whole crowd of young men with "church planting fever," I wrote a letter back with 10 suggestions. In this post are suggestions #2-5.
 

Parts 1 and 3 can be found here and here.

2. Get into a church that is a church plant and serve for a few years. Find a pastor under whom you can learn, be mentored, challenged spiritually and later be commended for the ministry. Even if you do not fully agree with how the pastor does ministry (and you probably won't), serve Jesus, the body and in submission to spiritual authority as an example of the gospel working in and through your life.
 

3. Start engaging people, living people (not dead puritans), who are not Christians. If you want to influence people, combine your studies with the interaction of unbelievers. They will help you to know the questions they are asking. Without that, your studies are skeletons without flesh. The puritans wrote their sermons by answering the objections of their hearers. That is why they were so lengthy. The only way your studying will have an impact in people’s life is to share truth with them on their turf—in their homes, places of work, neighborhoods and cultural events. Jesus went away to pray, but was often found eating and drinking with sinners.


4. Be humble. God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Young men with limited experience and a lot of academic knowledge are often puffed up with pride. This man is rarely usable until the gospel has taken root in his heart and he recognizes the honor of serving the King of kings with gifts bestowed by the King for His own glory.


5. Focus on the biblical requirements of an elder and seek to be the man he wants you to become and not just focused on the information you think you may need. A man’s character—above reproach—is the foundation for all other gospel ministry. Too often, a man desires the office of an elder and equips his mind with knowledge and neglects the weightier matters of prayer, intimacy with God, silence, solitude, obedience, repentance, confession, kindness and obtaining a missionary heart. Make sure you are called to eldership and follow Him passionately.

 

Seattle Boot Camp - March 9-10, 2009

 

Full Letter found here in pdf

1 Comments

Leonce Crump II

on Jan 22, 2009 :: 5:30 am

Great words Scott...I don't know exactly when church planting became sexy, but ANYONE, who has done it, or is in the middle of it knows that it can be and often is costly, and difficult, and it is faith not knowledge that helps you to endure. I pray this young man received your words well.

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Scott Thomas has served as the President of Acts 29 Network and a Pastor at Mars Hill Church. Scott has been a pastor for 30 years—first as a youth pastor and then as a lead pastor and church planter/church replanter for 16 years.