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Jesus is missing, but he didn’t run away from us! This reminds me of the old saying, “If you feel far from God, who moved?” Jesus is missing, because we’ve ignored him and replaced his teachings with man-made doctrine and traditions. 

For instance, what did Jesus have to say about Church-planting? The answer is: absolutely nothing! Although we all know that the term “Church-planting” is not a biblical term, we all want to spread the message of Jesus and to gather his followers into community. I believe Jesus and his early followers can shed a lot of light on doing this most effectively. 

It’s my understanding that the earliest use of planting churches was by the Anglican missionary efforts in the British colonies. Naturally, this was linked with British colonialism. Internationally today, Church-planters are easily linked in the same way, only now it is linked to the expansionism of Western Christianity. Jesus has nothing to say about Church-planting. In fact, Jesus only mentions the term “church” on two occasions. When I first saw this, I wondered why we spend so much of our time and energy talking Church.

Jesus taught the kingdom, but not the Church. It seems to me that Jesus did not launch the organized Church, nor did he intend for his followers to plant Churches. Jesus launched a movement around a relationship with him. Jesus never told anyone to go to Church; instead Jesus invites us into a movement to follow in his steps.

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