The result of preaching by these unknown missionaries was not the creation of a multitude of detached groups of believers in cities and villages all over the Empire. All these groups were fully equipped churches. The first knowledge that we have of the existence of Christians in many places is by the name of their pastor in the list of those attending some council. There was order in the expansion: the moment converts were made in any place, elders were appointed from among themselves who in turn could organize and bring into unity the visible Church and any new group of Christians in their neighborhood.
This then is what I mean by spontaneous expansion. This expansion follows the unexhorted and unorganized activity of individual members of the Church who simply explain to others the Gospel which they have found for themselves. This expansion follows the irresistible attraction of the Christian Church for men who see its ordered life, and are drawn to it by desire to discover the secret of a life which they instinctively desire to share. Also the expansion of the Church by the addition of new Churches.”
Where can you find this inspiration and expansion today?
Roland Allen, Edited by Sherman Driver