If you have never been a part of a home church, you might be wondering what we do when we meet up. All home churches will be different because they all have different people with different preferences in them, but you will find some things that frequently occur in most home churches.
The gatherings are heavily based on what the early church did as recorded in Acts 2:42:
“[The early church] devoted themselves to the apostles teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.”
In this blog I will talk about the fellowship that we enjoy. But first I need to answer the question:
What is fellowship?
In Greek the word used for ‘fellowship’ is koinonia. This means: ‘the share which one has in anything’. Let me illustrate what that means.
If you start a company, you will be a shareholder of the business you start up. That means that you legally own a ‘share’ of that company and you have direct input into how it is run.
If you are an employee in that business, you will have limited say in how the business runs and you do not share in the profits. You may eventually work there for long enough that you want to purchase shares in the company. Depending on the current ownership model, that may be easy, or extremely difficult.
The other people involved in running a successful business are the customers. They consume the product being sold and generally don’t have any concern with how the business is run. As long as they get their product on time, they are happy.
You may be asking yourself at the moment, ‘What’s this got to do with fellowship at a church?’
The only shareholders at most churches are the head pastors and elders.
The employees are those who are involved in the service, such as the worship team, Sunday school teachers and ushers. They may feel passionate about their church and want to get more involved. Without ‘buying shares’ though (i.e. becoming a pastor or elder) their thoughts are likely to get little traction with the ‘shareholders’. Buying those shares can be very difficult depending on the current pastors and elders.
The customers are the non-participants in the congregation. They pay their money, consume the product and care little about how the service is run.
Only a few people actually have a ‘share’ in the church.
According to the definition above, the leaders are the only ones enjoying fellowship. The others have no share in the church, so it is impossible for them to have the fellowship that the Bible talks about.
In home church there is no hierarchy and everyone has an equal ‘share’ when we gather. Some people will be more mature in the faith than others but if we all have the same Holy Spirit within us, then God can use any one of us to encourage, rebuke and teach another person regardless of title, age or gender.