B. The Four Priorities of the cell church: Jesus is Lord, Evangelism, Equipping, Cell Priority.
( Jesus is Lord of the Wesleyan
Methodists. Evangelism is the focus of the preachers; they are to focus in
saving souls in all that they do. The discipleship system of sponsorship, trial
band, class meeting, band and select society is an excellent equipping track
with but one fault. Wesley=s
equipping track so positively matured his people that they emerged from poverty
within three generations and as grassroots leaders helped Liberal and Labour
movements come to political power.
Involvement in the class meeting was a requirement for participation in
the Methodist Society.
; While Wesley saw himself as and taught his followers to be Abible Christians,@ the focus is on culturally defined holiness; the choice to obey all the commandments includes the command to fulfill the Great Commission itself. If the energy spent in pursuing holiness through Wesley=s equipping track had been expended on converting and discipling the lost, the world would have become entirely Christian long ago. To Wesley, as to all traditional Christians in the centuries since, conversions happen in worship services and small groups are filled up with persons converted there. In a true cell church, the nonbeliever=s first contact is through participation in the cell, and then worship. In a traditional church, evangelism is the goal of the preacher; in the cell church, evangelism is the responsibility of EVERY Christian without exception and every program of the church is subordinated to that purpose.
Class meetings do not divide or multiply as cells do; persons are assigned to a class meeting based on where they live and remain together forever as a lifelong nurturing unit. (Although one leaves the class to participate in band; one does not participate in both.) When small groups do evangelism, they grow so large that division is necessary; if there is no policy, rules or need for division, there is no evangelism by the small group.
NOTE (my response)
The quote is from Major League Disciple Making: An Overview of the Best Research on the Cell Church, an online course developed for the Institute for Discipleship at www.BeADisciple.com in 2009. Course materials, including these lectures, can be downloaded here: http://www.disciplewalk.com/IFD_MLD_Class_Links.html
All Scripture quotations are from the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Please review the page How and Why We Use Quotes.