Planting simple churches in every neighborhood, in every nation.

Where Did the 1st Century Church Go To Church?

They did not "go to church." At least not the way we "go to church." They did not go to a religious service in a so-called "church building" on Sunday morning for two hours. The followers of Jesus did not begin that practice until the 3rd century when Constantine, the Roman emperor, declared Christianity the official state religion of Rome. The 1st century believers couldn't "go to church" because they knew "they" were the church!!! However, they did gather together all the time. Not just for two hours on Sunday. EVERY DAY!!!!!!!!!!!

The first gathering of the church (in Jerusalem), happened on the day of Pentecost after Jesus ascended to heaven. It says in Acts 2:1-4, "And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they [about 120 disciples] were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the HOUSE where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance." Now the main issue here was that each of these 120 disciples was filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, and I fully acknowledge that! However, I did find it interesting that these 120 disciples were in a HOUSE in Jerusalem when the Holy Spirit was given and not in the Jewish Temple.

Why didn't Jesus instruct his disciples to tarry in the Holy Temple? Because God's presence was no longer taking up residence in the Temple. When Jesus was crucified, the veil over the door of the most holy place was torn in two by God himself, and God's Spirit and his presence moved out of the Temple. On the day of Pentecost, when God poured out the new wine of his Spirit, He needed new wine skins to hold the new wine. He chose to fill the disciples of Jesus gathered in that HOUSE with the Holy Spirit. They became the new wine skins. They became the receptacles that God filled with his Holy Spirit. Paul, the apostle said in 1st Cor. 3:16, "Know ye not that ye are the Temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?" If you are a born again believer, YOU are the temple of God, YOU are the house of God, YOU are God's church. God's Holy Spirit is anywhere the true disciples of Jesus are. Jesus said, "For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." Matt. 18:20 That means if two or more believers are gathered together in Jesus name in someone's HOUSE, Jesus promised to be in their midst. We no longer have to come to a Holy Temple to meet with God. Believers can gather together in Jesus name in a park, a camp ground, or just about ANYWHERE!!!!!!!!!!!

Following the pattern of the church in Jerusalem, the first Gentile church began in Cornelius's house in Caesarea. Peter came to Cornelius's house and preached Christ to him, his family, and his servants. They believed, and a church was birthed right there in the HOUSE of Cornelius. Later Paul said in Romans 16:3,5 "Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my helpers in Christ Jesus... likewise, greet the church that is in their HOUSE." Paul also said in Col.4:15, "Salute the brethren which are in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the church which is in his HOUSE."  It says in Acts 28:30-31, "And Paul dwelt two whole years in his own hired HOUSE and received all that came unto him, preaching the Kingdom of God and teaching those things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ, with all confidence no man forbidding him."

For the first 300 years, Christians met primarily in their homes. Acts 2:46 says, "And they, continuing daily with one accord in the Temple, and breaking bread from HOUSE to HOUSE, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart." Yes, it's true that local believers met in the outer courts of the Temple in Jerusalem, but only for a short time, for the Temple was destroyed in 70 A.D. by the Romans. There was no Jewish Temple in the other cities and towns of Judea, nor in the cities and towns of Samaria, nor in the cities and towns of the Gentile nations. The 1st Century church met primarily "house to house." SELAH !