“Day after day, in the temple courts and from house to house, they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Christ.” Acts 5:42
The place in which a church meets varies. The use of big buildings, complex organizations, involved programs, huge budgets that provide for schools, hospitals, orphanages and other social activities are only possible in financially strong unrestricted societies.
Although the Lord has blessed these activities in many places in the world, we must recognize that they are not essential to the existence of the church. In some countries these activities are forbidden by the government, while in others, the local economic situation makes them impossible. Still the church can thrive, because it is not dependent on these things. Serious problems have arisen when Christians have become confused on this point.
A number of years ago, for example, their lack of funds for such things was the cause of the slow growth of Christianity there. On one occasion, the following conversation was overheard.
“Do you have communists in your part of the country?” the observer asked.
“Most assuredly. They are there,” the leader replied.
“Are they growing in numbers and influence?” he then asked.
The leader hesitated momentarily, then admitted sadly, “Yes, they are growing very fast.”