Thoughts for a Church Planter

The New Testament church should reproduce itself by starting other churches. Starting a church should never be something forced rather natural. There is a great need to start more churches (although sadly some don’t even see the need), but it is always better to have someone who desires to be the leader and pastor for the new church that is going to be started. When someone desires to start a church and the pastor and congregation chooses a man to do so, the church planter should think very seriously concerning what he is about to do. Below are a few practical suggestions to what someone should think about and know before starting the new church. The more a persona can think, pray and plan before he begins the new church, the better it will be for him. Continue reading “Thoughts for a Church Planter”

There is no success without a successor

“There is no success without a successor”.  This is a great statement and shows us that no one is a self-made man. We all are who we are and what we are thanks to God and to the people He has placed in our lives. Parents, coaches, teachers, friends and spiritual leaders are just a few we could mention that have helped us to be where we are and what we are. Check out a few people in Scripture that became who they were thanks to those before them: Continue reading “There is no success without a successor”

The Master Plan of Evangelism

A very good book that speaks of how the Lord did ministry is The Master Plan of Evangelism by Robert E. Coleman. You can buy the book online about everywhere. I encourage you to get this small book and read it… and re-read it. I have noted a few of great nuggets this book gave:

  • Merely because we are busy, or even skilled, doing something does not necessarily mean that we are getting anything accomplished. The question must always be asked: Is it worth doing? And does it get the job done?
  • Men were His (Jesus’) method. His concern was not with programs to reach the multitudes, but with men whom the multitudes would follow. Remarkable as it may seem, Jesus started to gather these men before He ever organized an evangelistic campaign or even preached a sermon in public. Men were to be His method of winning the world to God.

Continue reading “The Master Plan of Evangelism”

Local Church vs. Universal Church

Just recently a friend of mine and I were discussing the theory of the universal church. I know there is a good bit of confusion with some people, but I got stirred up and began noting down reasons for why I believe in the local church vs. the universal church. Here are a few of those reasons why I believe the Bible teaches and stresses the importance of the local church:



  • Bible commands us to attend faithfully – Heb. 11:24-25 (why would it tell us to not forsake the assembling of ourselves if it was family instead of church, we are with family anyway)


  • God’s house is called house of prayer – Matthew 21:13; Mark 11:17; Lu 19:46


  • Church is where missionaries are sent out of – Acts 13


  • Church has authority to baptize – Mt 28:19-20; Philip was sent with authority from church in Acts


  • Church is where we give Tithe – Mal 3:10; I Cor. 16:1-2


  • Faith Promise and other giving is given thru the church – Philip 4:17; II Cor 8-9


  • Church Trains and Equips Christians and leaders – Eph. 4:11-12


  • Church Has authority to Discipline – Mt 18:15-17


  • Church Has authority to perform Lord’s supper – Acts 2 they met together in houses and in I Cor. 11:18, 20 says when “gathered together”. Christ did this for first time (Mt 26) with His disciples, representing church


  • Church is Pillar and ground of Truth – I Tim 3:15 – where we have pure, sound doctrine


  • Church is Place where Pastor Serves – I Tim 3; Titus 1; I Peter 5


  • Church is Place where Deacons Serve – I Tim 3; Titus 1; first time deacons were mentioned (most likely) was Acts 6, helping the church


  • Church is Place we invite people to so they can hear Word of God, grow in Lord, refuge from world


  • Church is where and what the first Christians were added to in Acts 2


  • God gave gifts (I Cor. 12) to individuals for the edifying of the church


  • Great commission was given to the church – Mark 16:15; Mt 28:18-20


  • God calls the individual Christians members of the body, which is the church


  • Christ loves the church (Eph. 5:25), founded the church (Mt 16:18; I Cor. 3:11), is head of church (Eph. 5:23; Col 1:18); purchased her with His blood (Acts 20:28) and is glorified in the church (Eph. 3:20-21)


  • In the OT – temple to go to – take offering, where priests served, where God’s presence was at, where ark of covenant was


  • In NT, God’s method of getting the Gospel out is thru the church, the NT work of Christ revolves around the church. God gives instruction to His church thru His Word. Epistles were mainly all written to churches.


  • Out of 112 or so times Bible uses word “church”, it is speaking of a local body of Christians. Word “ekklesia” means called out assembly, not family.


  • Assembly suggests the following:
  1. Implies its local – church of Galatia, Thessalonica, Ephesus, …
  2. Implies it visible – you could see the congregations Paul was talking about
  3. Implies Organization – God is a God of order and has placed order in the church – gave position of leadership (pastor and deacons), gave purpose (fulfill Great Commission), gave authority (baptize, Lord’s supper)


  • People do not agree the church is local vs. universal because:
  1. Don’t understand teaching/emphasis on church in Bible
  2. Don’t want accountability – a pastor to tell them what to do, place need to belong to, people who see and watch their lives
  3. Put emphasis on wrong thing – themselves, their family, work, money, etc. Family is not to take place of church and goes against Scriptural principle of authority (Christ placing pastor to watch over their souls – Heb. 13), but it also teaches children and others that church is not important. Wrongly placing priorities has harmful repercussions.


  • Why a Leader Must know what he believes:
  1. His beliefs affect his family – wife and kids will think less (max 80%) of church as he does
  2. His beliefs affect his life and ministry – why start other churches if don’t believe in the local church?
  3. His beliefs affect future leaders – if don’t believe in local church, why train leaders? What are you training leaders for? Where are they going to exercise their ministry? What are they going to start once they are ready to leave your church?



Here to Serve,

Jeff Bush

General Director of Vision Baptist Missions


How to get your church to be an indigenous church

I heard and took these notes many years ago. As I read back thru them recently, I was very thankful and saw how many of these simple thoughts formed my philosophy and practice of ministry. In no way are these infallible ideas or promised, success principles for ministry – but I do believe they can greatly help any missionary serving in any country.

  1. Start the first service with giving a offering – it reminds them, shows where the money goes, motivates them to give.

Four accounts for giving:

  • Tithes – maintains local church (Have a Stewardship Month to teach Time, Talent & Treasure)
  • Faith Promise (Have a Faith Promise month)
  • Other (Building Fund)
  • New Works – 10% of tithes – tell them we’ve been given and we should help give to start other churches so others can hear.

You can have four different people carry the four different purses of the different offerings – trustworthy people Continue reading “How to get your church to be an indigenous church”

Achieving the Indigenous Principle by Austin Gardner

No one argues the fact that we should build indigenous churches.  Everyone uses the same definition for an indigenous church. The question is not should we plant indigenous churches but rather how do we arrive at an indigenous church.  There are all sorts of opinions as to how to plant an indigenous church

 Principle 1 for you to consider

Greenhouse principle.  Many plants that we consider indigenous today must start out in a green house.  They are nurtured and cared for until they are able to make it on their own.

 Principle 2 for you to consider

Raising Children.  Everyone agrees that giving birth does not constitute raising children.  They must be cared for and provided for until they reach maturity.  The parent each day expects more and provides less.  Control curve. Continue reading “Achieving the Indigenous Principle by Austin Gardner”

A Church Planter Needs to Be…

The following quotes are by Roger N. McNamara, Editor in the book, A

Practical Guide to Church Planting, pp 11-16

  1. A church planter needs to be spiritually mature.
  1. A church planter needs to be a soul winner.
  1. A church planter needs to be a lover of people
  1. A church planter needs to be a leader.
  1. A church planter needs to be a disciplined person.
  1. A church planter needs to be flexible.
  1. A church planter needs to be financially responsible.
  1. A church planter needs to be a family man.
  1. A church planter needs to be educated and experienced.