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The Future of Church Planting in North America


Damian Emetuche

The Future of Church Planting in North America looks to Jesus as the model for life and ministry as he said, «As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you». In exploring this passage, the author asks, what does this passage mean in church-planting terms? How do we apply the concept of being «sent» within contemporary North America? This region of the world, much like the Middle East in the early first century, is populated by a mosaic of people from all nations, tribes, and language groups. Dr. Emetuche argues that church planting by the majority of the North American churches has been unduly influenced by cultures and traditions rather than by a well-thought-out missiological application of theological convictions. Examining the life and ministry of Jesus as found in the Gospel of John as well as the New Testament church plants, the author makes a strong case for a multicultural church planting as a model for the future. Dr. Emetuche maintains that church planting is about the transformation of lives and cultures through relationship with Christ and, therefore, involves spiritual warfare. Consequently, communities formed through this union in Christ transcend culture, tradition, and national allegiances and become multicultural.
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Chapter 7. Church Planting as Spiritual Warfare



In this chapter, I wish to demonstrate that beyond theological convictions and missiological paradigms, church planting is a spiritual warfare. It is actively being involved in the incessant warfare between God and the devil. No sinner can be saved and transformed without first binding the strongman that holds him or her captive. As Jesus said, “When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his goods are safe; but when one stronger than he attacks him and overcomes him, he takes away his armor in which he trusted and divides his spoil” (Luke 11:21–22). Without this understanding, many of our principles and strategies would amount to nothing because lives would not be transformed even if they join our churches.

When Jesus said, “I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matt. 16:18), what did he mean? How is he building the church? In respect to the first question, much debate has been on Peter since he was the one who answered Jesus’ question, “But who do you say that I am?” (Matt. 16:15). However, it should be noted that the “you” in the question was plural and was addressed to the Twelve. Peter can be seen either as answering for the group or giving his personal answer revealed to him by the Father. Whether answering for himself or the group is rather inconsequential. The most important part is...

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