“I do not know how it may appear to others, but this unexhorted, unorganized, spontaneous expansion has a charm far beyond that of our modern highly organized missions. I delight to think that a Christian traveling on his business trip, or a believer fleeing from persecution, could preach Christ, and a Church would spring up as the result of his preaching. Instead, his work is advertised with an appeal to Christians to give money to establish a school, or to send money to a Mission organization. It is claimed that new converts are deprived of guidance without these funds. I suspect that I am not alone in this strange feeling that many new believers read their Bibles and find there a welcome escape from our material appeals for funds, and from our methods of moving heaven and earth to make a convert.
Some say that the age of this simple expansion has gone, that we must live in our own age, and that in our age such spontaneous expansion cannot be expected. They say ‘an elaborate and highly organized society must employ elaborate and highly organized methods; that it is vain to hope for a simplicity that can never be ours. I must agree if it is really true that our elaborate machinery is a great improvement on Early Church practice, and that carrying the knowledge of Christ throughout the world it is in fact far more efficient than the simpler methods of the apostolic age. But if we long for spontaneous freedom of expanding life, realizing it is because we see in it something divine, something in its very nature profoundly efficient, something which we would gladly recover, then we must leave our modern machinery that obscures, deadens and kills.”
Roland Allen, Edited by Sherman Driver
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