Two from Thoman (2 of 2)

In this blog, Roger Thoman lists some very good reasons to believe in simple house gatherings.

Along these lines, I looked up a few things in James Rutz’s book The Open Church (which I hadn’t read in several years).  There are many dynamics to consider when opening up a church to a more mutual model.  Not the least significant is the arrangement of chairs.  Rutz believes the diagram below represents the best seating plan, at least at first.  Note that it is not a circle.

      _____________    _____________
||                                                             ||
||                                                             ||
||                                                             ||
      _____________    _____________


What comments do you have — on seating, on openness, on mutuality, on officials and staff pastors, on church real estate, on simplicity, etc.?


2 thoughts on “Two from Thoman (2 of 2)

  1. John Eoff 10/28/2014 / 2:34 pm

    There are no rules or recommendations to be found for the way. When believers get together they arrange themselves into what ever seating arrangement they desire. They have no staff, or pastor unless they have committed themselves to incorporate, whether officially or not. Real estate? Each may own some real estate but unless they have constituted themselves into a business entity they can own no property except individually; nor can they have a bank account, employees, obligations, etc.. The way is people. Period. Churches are what many have constituted in order to have control over others, separate themselves from all other believers, and make a name for their invention.


    • Brian Casey 10/28/2014 / 7:25 pm

      I appreciate these comments, John. You’ve been an independent thinker long enough that it must be foreign to you to consider that people need a little security and direction. 🙂 Rutz, the author of the book I referred to, wasn’t at all suggesting that anyone has to dictate a seating pattern. He was really only saying that, when you’re starting an informal, mutual-type, open (i.e., not denominationally tied, not churchy, not pattern-based) meeting of Christians, it’s probably best to start with a seating pattern like the one he suggests. Two (or more) rows, square or rectangle pattern, so some people can hide a little in the 2nd row until they feel comfortable. That kind of thing….

      On Tue, Oct 28, 2014 at 2:34 PM, NT Christianity wrote:



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