During this pandemic, start a biblical house church!
(For the Biblical basis for the house church, read through “Acts” and your entire New Testament and read “The Depression Proof Church: The Biblical Answer to the Church in Crisis,” by Frank Becker.)
You should continue to support your local church, but you may certainly supplement what has sometimes become sterile worship with a dynamic small group meeting.
It’s simple! Just follow these steps:
First, pray over the idea with your family. When you are all satisfied that the Lord is with you, move ahead. Remember, Jesus said, “For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst” (Matthew 18:20).
Next, discuss it with close Christian friends. These should be godly people who are concerned about the pandemic and about the restraints on, and persecution of, the Christian Church. They should be people who will prayerfully exercise care in gathering for worship. To start with, invite one or two families to join you on Sunday mornings.
These should be people you know, and perhaps have fellowshipped with in Sunday School or even small group ministry.
Set aside a place in your home where you will meet, perhaps the back yard, the garage, a family room, or the living room. You’ll need to provide access to a bathroom as well, but since this is a major risk for spreading the disease, it would be best if everyone tried to avoid its use.
You’ll need conscientious individuals who will guard themselves as they clean all the furniture and any surfaces likely to be touched in the course of a meeting.
It would be courteous, and indicate that you are not testing God, if you all wore masks, and, if possible, gloves. Have hand cleaner at the door and in other places. You should certainly try to practice so-called “social distancing.”
And any family that suspects they may have an infected member should—for the love of Christ—stay home. Oh, this is one time in history when it would be best not to greet one another with a holy kiss.
It’s best if you can dedicate this room for this purpose, thus providing a place you can thoroughly clean between meetings, and in which you carefully arrange furniture. Make sure it is well ventilated, and that, if possible, you may carefully change air filters regularly.
You don’t need a preacher per se. You can always have your fellowship refer back to the message your own pastor preached, or you may encourage spiritual growth by having members of your group bring a lesson or a message each week.
It’s pretty simple. What you should be looking for is an opportunity to fellowship and express the love of Christ to one another, while taking care not to infect one another.
Plan to sing favorite songs or choruses. Encourage those who play instruments or sing to minister. Spend time in prayer for one another, for the Church, and for the nation.
If someone is in real need, consider receiving an offering. Perhaps you could support a missionary. Many have seen significant reductions in their income.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful to sit across the room from someone, perhaps in a large circle, where you could actually see one another’s eyes and hear one another’s voices as you praise God together?