How Does Church Planting Help?

This post is part of an ongoing series looking at church planting.

There are numerous benefits to planting churches.

Church plants advance the Kingdom of God.9 When more and more believers gather together, proclaiming the gospel, preaching the Scriptures, celebrating the sacraments, and living in community, the Kingdom of God tangibly advances in our world.

Church plants allow for more creative and innovative ways of doing church and sharing the gospel.10 As culture, technology, and communication continue to change, the church will need to continue its millennia-long pursuit of sharing the gospel in terms that non-Christians can understand. New churches often represent the cutting-edge of this process, as they can attempt ways of connecting with people that established churches cannot.

Church plants evangelize more vigorously than established churches.11 Newer churches are more likely to seek to attract newcomers, and often structure their outreach and ministry to focus more on those outside Christian faith,

Church plants have a better chance of engaging the culture they’re trying to reach.12 Rather than speaking to an established Christian subculture, church plants bring unreached or under-reached subcultures and geographies into direct contact with the gospel.13

Church plants are often built to last by being purpose-driven and simple.14 Although focus, order, longevity, effectiveness, and growth do not themselves constitute the telos of the church, these characteristics often demonstrate the ongoing work of the Holy Spirit in the local church.

Church plants often connect better with unreached communities.15 Community and relationship develop around similarity, shared viewpoints or experiences. When a church plant is led by someone in a parallel life stage, geography, situation, or background as the surrounding community, that church has a better chance of reaching those people.

Church plants often connect better with younger generations.16 As Boomers and Gen-Xers grow older and Millennials and iGen-ers take more of an active role in culture, the church will need to do a better job of forming these generations. Church plants that are viewed as “relevant” and “engaging” by younger people may do a better job building relationships with them.

9 Tim Keller, “Why Church Planting?”

10 See Anthony Siegrist, “The Church Needs to Be a Place for Radical Innovation.”

11 Malphurs, 9. Chester and Timmis, 86-7.

12 Stetzer, 1-2

13 Stetzer, 51. On this reality, Stetzer writes, “Church planters who immerse themselves in the new culture without a commitment to traditional patterns will be the best change agents.”

14 See Collins and Porras, Built to Last, Rick Warren, The Purpose Driven Church, and Rainer and Geiger, Simple Church.

15 See Ed Stetzer, “Six Reasons Established Churches Should Plant Churches.”

16 See the Barna Research on millennial engagement in the church, as well this article from Church Plants.


Published by Jacob J. Prahlow

Husband of Hayley. Dad of Bree and Judah. Lead pastor at Arise Church. MATS from Saint Louis University, MA from Wake Forest University, BA from Valparaiso University. Theologian and writer here and at Conciliar Post. Find me on social at @pastorjakestl

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