The New Testament church did not collect money to be spent on salaries, programs, buildings or itself.
The New Testament church was primarily concerned with making disciples and caring for the poor, the orphan and the widow.
The New Testament church did not elect a separate “clergy class” to perform special religious duties, instead everyone was “in the ministry” by default.
The New Testament church did not attempt to follow an old testament code of worship.
The New Testament church affirmed the priesthood of the believer and allowed every member to share, participate and take an active part in the regular functioning of the church itself- including baptism, sharing communion, preaching the Gospel and making disciples.
The New Testament church did not keep a bank account, instead it gave away all the funds laid at the Apostles feet in order to plant churches and care for those in need- both within and without the church body.
The New Testament church leaders were humble servants who waited on tables, washed feet, served others, laid hands on the sick, encouraged the persecuted and understood that true greatness was found at the feet of men, rather than at the top of the ladder.
The New Testament church did not segregate the body based on age, sex, race, music preference, ethnic background, or any other criteria. Everyone who named the name of Christ, regardless of age, sex or race, was immediately a fully functional and valued member of the Body of Christ.
The New Testament church did not verbally, politically or physically oppose the oppressive Roman government or pagan religions of the day. Instead they simply lived extravagant lives of love among their neighbors and served anyone in their path as Jesus commanded.
The New Testament church was not in favor of violence, nor did it participate in armed conflict, not even in self-defense. Instead, the early followers of Jesus quietly imitated their Lord and gave up their property, submitted to prison and went to their deaths peacefully.
The New Testament church allowed every member, male or female, slave or free, Jew or Gentile, to preach the Gospel, plant churches, teach the Word, and lead worship every single day.
The New Testament church had no one single location where “Church” was located. Worship was not seen as something that happened in a particular location or on a particular day or with the assistance of particular people. Instead, worship was seen as a life continually submitted to Christ as a living sacrifice for the good of others, to the glory of God.
The New Testament church understood the Gospel of the Kingdom to be about God’s Kingdom (rule and reign) being released in the heart of every follower of Jesus, not something that would come one day after the death of the saints or the return of Christ.
The New Testament church did not consider the work of the Holy Spirit to be weird or strange. Instead they accepted the moving of the Holy Spirit within the Body as the natural and continual ministry of Jesus being released in the Body to heal, teach, instruct, correct, rebuke, inspire, encourage and empower the people of God to carry the Gospel of the Kingdom and live a life of love for others.
The New Testament church was always being taught to love one another and to imitate the love of Christ and to humbly serve others as Jesus did. They were not concerned in any way with amassing wealth, getting healed, gaining status in the community, becoming politically powerful, being respected, changing laws, picketing the funerals of homosexuals, speaking out against pagan practices, or selling products with their church name, cross, or scripture verse attached.
The New Testament church did not have a name.
The New Testament church did not brand itself.
The New Testament church did not provide a salary or ongoing stipend to those within the Body who acted as Elders, Teachers, Pastors or Facilitators. The people who performed these functions within the Body did so out of love and were only compensated by the Holy Spirit with joy.
The New Testament church did not have a Bible, or even a copy of the entire Old Testament, yet this Body managed to preserve the teachings of Jesus, the doctrines of the faith, the creeds and Gospel of the Kingdom with only the empowering presence of the Holy Spirit to guide them.
The New Testament church did not market itself or the Gospel. Instead the original followers of Jesus concentrated on loving as Jesus loved, giving and sharing as Jesus did, and concerned itself with the welfare of others in need; both inside and outside the Body.
Anyone else in favor of a return to a more New Testament form of church besides me?