Over the years we have been invited to train large groups of pastors, church planters and church leaders. Our experience in doing this has taught us that it is very difficult to connect with individuals and make sure they understand the Scriptures and principles being taught. As I like to say to those we work with, we want to become more and more effective in the work we do for the Lord, and large groups are not effective. With this desire clearly in mind, we find ourselves returning over and over to the model in Scripture.
“And when he had entered the house and left the people, his disciples asked him about the parable” (Mark 7:17). Notice the three points in this verse made His teaching effective.
1. Jesus entered a house. It was a limited space and thus created an intimate atmosphere where teaching would become very personal. It would be absent of distractions that we have in public places.
2. Jesus left the crowds and public places so He could be in the intimacy of a house. This move is opposite from the popular attitude of leaders today. They think the greater the numbers at events the more successful they are. It narrowed the audience to those who were truly interested in His teaching and removed those with curiosity.
3. It is very difficult and almost impossible for individuals to ask questions in large crowds. In a household setting, there is freedom to ask for clarification, deeper understanding and seek answers to questions of the heart.
This principle needs to be thought through carefully because it runs counter to our culture. If you desire God to use you and be effective in spreading the gospel, teaching biblical principles, and impacting lives with a godly manner of life, you will need to rethink the setting you use.
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