WRONG NOTION 1: THE PRINCIPLES OF CHURCH GROWTH ARE DIFFERENT EVERYWHERE PRINCIPLES INVOLVE GENERAL RULES FOR EVERYONE.
Biblical principles don't change, but methods can change.
For example, Jesus healed the sick with the same principle of faith, but different methods.
It may amaze us that if Jesus wanted to ministered to 3 blind people on the 3 different occasions, he may tell the first, "Go and sin no more." Then he put his hand in the eyes of the second and command: "Be open." Lastly, he may take mud and put on the eyes of the third person instructing him, "Go to the River Jordan and wash your eyes."
The same principle of faith but different methods of healing! In the same way, the same principles of church but different methods of church growth.
WRONG NOTION 2: THE METHODS OF CHURCH GROWTH ARE THE SAME EVERYWHERE
METHODS INVOLVE SPECIFIC STRATEGIES FOR A SPECIFIC PERSON IN A SPECIFIC SITUATION IN ASPECIFIC PLACE AND AT A SPECIFIC TIME.
METHODS ARE VEHICLES THAT CONVEY PRINCIPLES.
So the principles are the same, but the methods could be different.
You see, any Biblical principle will work anywhere in the world but a particular method may work in America but fail in Africa.
WRONG NOTION 3: ONLY GOD DETERMINES BOTH THE MEASURE AND DEGREE OF CHURCH GROWTH
WRONG NOTION 4: ONLY HUMAN EFFORTS DETERMINE BOTH THE MEASURE AND DEGREE OF CHURCH GROWTH
DIVINE FACTOR SUPERSEDES HUMAN FACTORS
" And THE LORD ADDED TO THEIR NUMBER DAILY those who were being saved" (Acts 2:47, NIV).
So Paul could plant and Apollos could water it, but only God gave the increase because unless God builds a church the labourers are just wasting their time (1 Cor 3:6, Acts 18:24-28, Ps 127:1, Jn 3:27).
The reason Jesus said, "I will build my church" was that only He could add to His people (see Mat 16:18). No one can become a member of the Body of Christ unless God draws him to Himself (Jn 6:44, 65, Jn 12:32).
They knew that though the divine factor superseded the human factors nevertheless as co-labourers with Christ, He would not play their roles in Church growth.
So let's look briefly at the keys with which they unlocked the secrets of Church growth.
WRONG NOTION 5: THERE IS ONLY ONE GOLDEN KEY TO CHURCH GROWTH
WRONG NOTION 6: CHURCH GROWTH MUST BE INSTANTENOUS
WRONG NOTION 7: AS FAR AS CHURCH GROWTH IS CONCERNED, QUANTITY IS ALL THAT MATTERS, NOT QUALITY
WRONG NOTION 8: AS FAR AS CHURCH GROWTH IS CONCERNED, QUALITY IS ALL THAT IS IMPORTANT, NOT QUANTITY
QUALITY FIRST, QUANTITY SECOND
Some disciples "went to Antioch and began to speak to Greeks also, telling them the good news about the Lord Jesus.
The Lord's hand was with them, and A GREAT NUMBER OF PEOPLE BELIEVED AND TURNED TO THE LORD.
SO FOR A WHOLE YEAR BARNABAS AND SAUL MET WITH THE CHURCH AND TAUGHT GREAT NUMBERS OF PEOPLE. THE DISCIPLES WERE CALLED CHRISTIANS FIRST AT ANTIOCH [by non-disciples]" (Acts 11:20-21, 26, NIV).
Knowing full well that Jesus would come back for Christians, that is, Christ-like believers, not for sinful believers, Paul and Barnabas took enough time to teach the disciples holiness, thus making them ready for heaven.
They knew it was no use gathering a great multitude of believers who would end up in hell or lake of fire for living like devils (see also Acts 8:13, 18-23). So their ultimate goal or priority was the quality or spirituality of the people followed by their quantity so that they could take along with them a great multitude to heaven (Rev 7:9).
I have observed that good quantity without good quality brings worldliness while good quality without good quantity may be selfishness.
WRONG NOTION 9: IF YOU HAVE TRIED YOUR BEST AND THE CHURCH IS NOT GROWING, THEN TRY YOUR WORST
SOME BAD THINGS PASTORS DO BECAUSE OF CHURCH GROWTH FRUSTRATION
i. Abusing other pastors who seem to have what you desperately need, though difficult to get.
ii. Condemning big churches
iii. Consulting the Occult for help
iv. Isolating yourself and those following you from other believers
v. Stealing members of other churches
vi. Watering down your message
vii. Using worldly gimmick like worldly dances, worldly comedies, worldly marketing strategies, worldly movies, and so on
viii. Using humanly cleverly calculated false prophecies [stage-managed or arranged prophecies] to deceive
ix. Using humanly cleverly calculated false miracles [stage-managed or arranged miracles] to manipulate
x. Abandoning your God-given mission to accomplish (mandate to fulfil) because of discouragement
xi. Refusing to grow up in your personal spiritual life
xii. Seeking flattering titles to cover up instead of anointing and wisdom to break forth
WRONG NOTION 10: IF YOU HAVE A GOOD CHURCH STRUCTURE [spiritually and physically], THEN YOU DON'T NEED TO MAKE EFFORTS FOR CHURCH GROWTH
WRONG NOTION 11: IF THE CHURCH YOU ARE LEADING IS NOT GROWING, THEN IT MEANS YOU ARE NOT CALLED TO LEAD THEM OR YOU ARE LIVING IN SIN
WRONG NOTION 12: THE PURPOSE OF CHURCH GROWTH IS AFFLUENCE, NOT INFLUENCE
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