Pastor Alex Adegboye
For if he were on earth, he should not be a priest, seeing that there are priests that offer gifts according to the law:
Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount.
It was only Moses that went before God on the mountain top. The tabernacle in the scripture is the house of God. This scripture was an instruction and vision about the way and pattern the tabernacle (House or Church) would be built. The pattern for the tabernacle is a template. Jesus is the pattern-son the way we should all look like.
Exodus 25:8-9 “And let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them. According to all that I shew thee, after the pattern of the tabernacle, and the pattern of all the instruments thereof, even so shall ye make it”.
Number 8:4 “And this work of the candlestick was of beaten gold, unto the shaft thereof, unto the flowers thereof, was beaten work: according unto the pattern which the LORD had shewed Moses, so he made the candlestick”.
The Holy Spirit was upon David and made him understand the pattern as shown him. 1 Chronicles 28:11-12, 19 “Then David gave to Solomon his son the pattern of the porch, and of the houses thereof, and of the treasuries thereof, and of the upper chambers thereof, and of the inner parlours thereof, and of the place of the mercy seat,
And the pattern of all that he had by the spirit, of the courts of the house of the LORD, and of all the chambers round about, of the treasuries of the house of God, and of the treasuries of the dedicated things”
Paul acknowledged he was called to be a pattern, 1Timothy 1:16 “Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting”.
When God wants to do something He will do a template which will be followed by everyone. God told Titus he should be a pattern so that those who follow him should do the right thing.
Titus 2:7-8 “In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you”.
God always walk by pattern. God always uses pattern. He will show the pattern to the local church. When God wants to do something He will do a template then make others to sought it. Jesus said “I will build my church…” He had a pattern. When God called me, He shew me the book of Daniel chapter 2, 3, and 4, He said the stone was going to be cut out of the mountain without hands and when that stone is cut out then it will grow and fill the earth. What will make people who come to your church stay is because you (the pastor) are following the pattern of the ministry as laid out by God. Pattern is the basis of the foundation on which we all have to build. If you want to have a good building the first thing is to have a good plan (The Pattern) else you will have a structure that will not last. It is in your interest and mine that we build according to the pattern because if we don’t we might build a super structure that might not last; a super structure that is going to be faulty and in the long run bring reproach to God and His kingdom, 1 Cor 3:9-18.
The church that is properly built must be built to pattern. You can build with any resource i.e. people but beware, that the bible instructs that we be careful what, how and with whom we build. Though Jesus is the foundation of the Church He has given every man of God the pattern of the ministry that he should build.
MYTHS (UNPROVEN THEORIES) ABOUT GROWING A CHURCH
1. The only thing that large churches care about is attendance is not true. Church growth is the natural result of church health. If your church is healthy your church will grow. A church is only healthy when your message is biblical and your mission is balanced. Each of the New Testament purpose of the church must be in proper equilibrium for your church to be healthy. When your church is healthy it will grow. If you have good message and your message is biblical the people will come. There are five dimensions of church growth –
a. Fellowship – churches must grow warmer in fellowship
b. Discipleship – churches must grow deeper in discipleship
c. Worship – churches must grow stronger in worship
d. Ministry – churches must grow deeper and broader in ministry
e. Evangelism – churches must grow must grow larger through evangelism
You go out to evangelize, then you teach them ministry, help them through worship, discipleship and fellowship then they begin to come. But the first finger forward is evangelism. A healthy church is the only church that can have growth in all of these dimensions. If you have these in proper balance then you will grow. The PATTERN is this five-fold dimension of church growth: fellowship, discipleship, worship ministry and evangelism.
2. Large churches do so at the expense of smaller churches. This is a myth. As a matter of fact every church will have its own experience and process that God will help her go through.
3. You must choose between quality and quantity. This is not true. People think you can never really be qualitative if you are quantitative, that is, you can never have quality if you are plenty. The reason that your church might not be growing essentially is because your members are not inviting new people into church. Any Christian who does not invite people to church is not fruitful. What quality is in a church full of people that does not add to the church? A church that is not able to generate new members is a sick church and is not a qualitative church. The quality of a church is known by the fact that her members are able to invite new people. If you come to a certain church, you’re blessed and fed with the word of God and your life is being changed with good things following you should invite people to the church. You don’t have to choose between quality and quantity. As a matter of fact quality produces quantity. If your church is a qualitative church, it will become quantitative also. Quality refers to the kind of disciple; quantity refers to the number of disciple. Quality is the type or the kind of people you have in your church. If a church is really qualitative, it will have people. We should count people in our church because people count.
4. You must compromise the message and the mission of the church before the church can grow. John 12:32 “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me”. If you preach Jesus, His message has drawing power. His message will produce people. As a pastor of a church your message must consider every member of the congregation. Your message must be packaged in a way and manner that it reaches out to everybody. You don’t have to compromise your message but balance it.
5. If you are dedicated enough your church will grow. It is not true. The bible stressed on wisdom i.e. skill in Eccl 10:10 “If the iron be blunt, and he do not whet the edge, then must he put to more strength: but wisdom is profitable to direct”. 1Cor 3:10 “According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon”. Church grows by the power of God through the skilled effort of people. While we wait on God to work for us He is waiting to work through us. There is always something you can do to make your church grow.
6. There is one secret key to church. There is more than one way to grow a church. Never confuse methods with the message. Some people have the message not the method while others have the method not the message. While our message (Jesus) does not change the method must change.
7. All God expects from us is faithfulness. God expects both faithfulness and fruitfulness. Fruitfulness means winning souls. It also means achieving results as possible by the resources God has given us. There must be result.
– Jesus calls us to be fruitful, John 15:16
– We glorify God by being fruitful, John 15:8
– Fruitfulness pleases God, Colossians 1:10
– Jesus reserves punishment for the for the unfaithful, Matthew 21:14
8. You cannot learn from large churches. You can learn from both small and large churches.
THREE THINGS YOU MUST NOT COMPROMISE
- The Master (Jesus Christ)
- The Message (The Truth)
- The Motive
The church grows on the truth, I Tim 3:15. Be careful your method does not take away your mission and message. You can change the style but the message must not change.
God bless you.