House Churches: Contextualization of the Functions of House in the New Testament Times for Evangelism
Keywords:Contextualization, House Church, Oikos, Christian Community, Evangelism
The churches in New Testament times met together within houses. Why did Jesus’ disciples and Paul utilize the house for the church’s activities? They did so because the house was the foundational unit pertaining to the social, economic, and religious structures of society. The house was commonplace that could be used for worship and religious teaching. Moreover, because of the social and economic functions of the household, the house provided a sphere of easy interaction and communication with others in order to evangelize them with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Thus, the disciples and Paul are facilitating contextualized structures in their use of the housing unit for the building of Christian community and evangelization. This effectiveness can be evidenced by the wide acceptance of Christianity throughout the first three centuries of Christianity.
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