BIBLE READING: ACTS 2:42-47; LUKE 10:1-7; PSALM 133
“Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:25 (NKJV).
There are two Dimensions of the Body of Christ:
(1.) The Universal Church: This refers to God’s Extended Family. (see Eph.3:14-15)
(2.) The Local Church: This refers to the Nuclear Family where each believer must belong. (see Heb.10:25) When you are born again, you automatically become a member of the Universal Church. However, God expects every believer to become first a member of a Local Church, especially for the purpose of accountability and spiritual growth (see Ps.68:6; Heb.13:17 and Eph.4:10-13). When you are baptized and committed to a Body of believers, you become a member of that Local Church.
The Core Purpose of the Local Church is Soul Winning, Consolidation, Discipleship and Commissioning of believers for the Work of the Ministry. One of the most effective ways to achieve this is through Small Groups/Cell Systems which was a strategy the early Church deployed so effectively that within two years, they had discipled the whole of Asia for Christ. The Early Church had large meetings at the Synagogues but they also met regularly in one another’s houses (Acts 2:42-46).
A Cell is the Organization of members of a Local Church into Small Groups for the purpose of Worship, Soul Winning, Consolidation, Discipleship and Commissioning under the guidance of a Lay Leader. A Cell system gives Believers the opportunity to participate in Discovery Bible Study (DBS) where every member of the Small Group contributes to the discussion and ask questions under the guidance of a Lay Leader. This Small Group is the fastest way of developing and multiplying disciples to fulfill the Great Commission.
The Vision of Jesus Christ is for everyone in the Body to be a fully mobilized disciple carrying the Presence and Power of God to their spheres of influence. Put succinctly, the Vision of Christ is four fold i.e. Win, Consolidate, Disciple and Send. An effective Cell/Small Group has proven to have the potential of rapidly multiplying the number of believers and Small Groups within a short time. The Harvest is truly plentiful and the labourers are few (see Matt. 9:37). The following DBS processes if deployed in Small Groups will guarantee massive multiplication:
- Opening Prayer (This can only be dispensed with when it will offend the atheist(s) who are the target converts but gradually win them with the Word).
- Discuss what the group members are thankful for in that week.
- What challenges have been faced by members of the group and ask how the other members can help.
- Who did you share last week’s Message with? (Applicable only in subsequent meetings).
- Have a group member read the Bible Passage (Read in different versions and members can close their eyes to visualize the Word).
- Ask group members to summarise the passage (What did they discover about God, about man and about themselves? What stood out for them and why?)
- Based on the passage that was read, how will you obey the Word?
- With whom will you share what you have learnt this week? (The idea is the possibility of creating another small group).
- Based on the passage, what is your prayer point or what do you want to see the Lord do in your life or the life of other members?
- Ask and agree on when the group members should meet again (for outreach of the DBS, who should we invite to our next meeting?)
Father, I thank You for the Revelation of Small Groups/Cell Systems, a vital strategy for this endtime harvest. Lord, multiply Your Body as you did in the Early Church and now in a greater dimension in Jesus’ Name. Amen.