Why We Plant Churches: Part 1
As we lead up to Church Planting Sunday at Vintage in a few weeks, we wanted to share some of the reasons that church planting is a critical part of our DNA. Look for two more posts this week, and join us on Church Planting Sunday for a special message, more information, and ways that you can get involved through prayer and giving. Church Planting Sunday is Feb. 1 at Downtown and Midtown and Feb. 8 at Durham.
When Jesus left earth for heaven, he gave his disciples one basic task: Tell all people around the whole world his story (the gospel). They fulfilled this mission by starting new churches where two basic conditions were met: People lived there and at least some of those people weren’t yet followers of Jesus.
Jesus’ followers today don’t just see the church planting model set by the apostles as a good strategy; it is the primary way to fulfill Jesus’ command to continue to tell the gospel story to all people around the whole world.
Vintage Church was started 12 years ago as a place to tell doubters, seekers, and followers about the gospel of Jesus Christ. At Vintage, we believe the gospel is the best news we ever could tell doubters, seekers, and followers.
A church plant that tells people the gospel story isn’t a new idea. It’s the primary way Jesus chooses to be made known. It’s the way his disciples have made him known for the last 2,000 years.
Vintage is a church because Jesus’ Church has been a church-planting church since its inception. You heard the gospel because Jesus’ Church has been a church-planting church since its inception. Vintage is a church-planting church because it’s the very thing Jesus commanded us to be.
Jesus designed his church not just to declare the gospel, but also to demonstrate the gospel, modeling what it means to both love Jesus and love our neighbors. Though the Church hasn’t always done this well, when Jesus’ followers rightly demonstrate the gospel, everyone around them benefits. A Biblical church rightly brings the gospel to people in both word and deed.
As Bible Scholar Ed Clowney wrote, “The heart of the gospel moves the church to mission and to deeds of mercy which have always been part of the Christian mission.” So new churches not only declare the gospel, they also demonstrate it by finding things in their city that aren’t as they are supposed to be and doing everything to make them look like God originally designed them to be.
Jesus’ gospel story is told to all people around the whole world through churches that plant churches. It’s the way Jesus designed it. It’s the way his apostles did it. It’s the way the Church has always done it. It’s the way Vintage will do it, wherever there are people that aren’t yet followers of Jesus and wherever there are areas of great need.