The financial cost of starting a church

Dollar sign
According to Dave Barrett and Todd Johnson in World Christian Trends, the average cost per new baptism in the United States tops $1.5 million! This figure reflects the cost of church buildings, seminary training etc.

What has happened to Jesus' instructions to the disciples in Luke 10. "Don't take any money with you…"?

There is a huge paradigm shift here. In traditional church planting, we raise the resources to start a church, and the cost is exorbitant. One figure I have come across suggests that the amount needed to plant a fast-growing church will be in the order of $200,000 to $300,000 over a two-year period.

In simple/organic church, we understand that God provides the resources and he does so through the harvest. The laborers, those we pray for in Luke 10:2, are in the harvest. These "people of peace" will be the new leaders including the future apostles and prophets. Right now, they may be doing drugs, sleeping around, involved in crime. They may be business people, students or housewives. But when Jesus grabs hold of them, their lives will be so radically transformed that others follow them into the Kingdom. They don't need years of seminary training to be effective. After all, Jesus disciples, those who turned the world upside down were described as "ordinary men with no special training" (Acts 4:13). 

We don't need special buildings. These are also in the harvest–people's homes, or cafe's, dorm rooms or office buildings. Those who are not-yet-believers often have no interest in church, which for them is represented by the building, but they have great interest in Jesus and willingly let us come to their homes or meet with them elsewhere. 

In Rosa's story, there was no financial cost to starting a church. 

 

 

 

 

 

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