Welcome to Home Church Support

This blog was designed to provide online resources for church groups that meet in people’s homes, or in other non-traditional settings.  We have shared some articles about house churches in the Bible, as well as what a modern day house church might look like.  We have also provided links to audio/video messages on the Bible, available at www.churchtothenations.com.  Please feel welcome to join our discussion group on facebook, available at the following link: churchtothenationsonfacebook.

May God encourage you as you seek to explore or grow in the Christian faith!

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Online Video Messages from the Bible

Video messages from the Bible are now available at  www.churchtothenations.com.  Just go to the “VIDEO MESSAGES” tab and left click on the title of the topic you would like to view.  Video messages for children are also available at the “CHILDREN’S STORIES” tab.

We hope you enjoy them!

House Churches in the Bible

Long before Christianity became an institution, followers of Jesus met in one another’s homes.  These meetings were called a “church”:

“Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my co-workers in Christ Jesus.  They risked their lives for me. Not only I but all the churches of the Gentiles are grateful to them.  Greet also the church that meets at their house” (Romans 16:3-5, NIV).

Give my greetings to the brothers and sisters at Laodicea, and to Nympha and the church in her house” (Colossians 4:15, NIV).

In fact, the term “church” did not originally refer to a building or structure at all.  It was used to describe the community of people who shared a common faith in Jesus as their Lord and Saviour:

“To the church of God in Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be his holy people, together with all those everywhere who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ—their Lord and ours: Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 1:2-3, NIV).

Today, people still meet together in homes to know and share the love of God.  Just like in New Testament times, these meetings are still properly referred to as “church.”

If your “church” meets together in your home or someone else’s please feel free to make use of the resources available on the site.  We hope that they encourage you in your faith as you seek to know and share the love of God and the gospel of Jesus Christ.

House Churches in the New Testament and Today

So, Christians met together in each other’s homes to have “church” in the New Testament.  That’s good to know, but what did they do?  The Bible gives us some great information about that:

“They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer” (Acts 2:42, NIV)

“Be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 5:18-20, NIV).

It seems that their meetings involved teaching from the apostles (now found in the Bible), fellowship (talking and sharing their lives with one another), breaking bread (sharing food together), prayer, song and giving thanks to God for the good things He provides. 

We do all of these things when we meet together in our home group.  We often start with snacks that each of us brings.  During this time we also catch up with each other regarding life events and how they are impacting us.  We then usually have a time of singing or listening to a worship CD together.  We then often follow this by reading something from the Bible, and then we pray.  We pray about many things: each other’s lives and struggles, things we believe God has called us to do, and generally that God’s will would be done on earth as it is in heaven–that everyone would come to know His love and salvation, and that those who know Him will continue to grow and be transformed by His love. 

The Bible also mentions that God’s Spirit sometimes gives people gifts that they can use to encourage one another.  This is mentioned many places in the Bible, including Romans chapter 12:

For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.  We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.” (Romans 12:4-8, NIV)

We find that God’s Spirit does lead us and give us gifts that we use to encourage one another during our “church” time together.  These gifts do not become our main focus though.  They are a means to an end.  Our goal is to encourage faith, hope and love in one another, to know and share the love of God. (see 1 Corinthians 13)

So, that’s what church in the New Testament looked like, and I hope this also gives you a picture of what it can look like today.  We try not to be too rigid with our format though.  We want to allow God to have the opportunity to lead us during our time together.  When God is involved, I believe it is important to leave room for the unexpected :).