As we approach the time of Jesus’ re-appearing, the system of religion we have embraced looks much like it did when He first came to earth. The learned rabbis [pastors] brought everyone into their elaborate temples [church buildings] where most of spiritual life was lived. Unfortunately, it was a system that led few to a vibrant relationship with God, and many to be “the lost sheep of the House of Israel” Jesus had to come rescue.
He came with a message to do just that: “Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.” He was on a mission to find and rescue those lost to religion in His house by bringing them into the kingdom He brought with Him. We believe His message to them then was the same one He wants the 90+% of His children now apparently lost once more in God’s house [if we are to believe their own polling numbers] to hear: “The kingdom of heaven on earth has come! It’s not something we have to wait until we die to experience. It’s right here, right now!”
What does this have to do with community? Along with that new kingdom, Jesus set up an entirely new culture for His apostolic church. He ignored the religious system, the temples, and their leaders that had caused the problem, and established His church with ordinary people in the marketplace. There He created a living, breathing community of mostly working-class people who would be known as His disciples.
Gathering His community was not just important, it was priority one. Prior to preaching or doing His first miracle, Jesus’ first order of business was to gather His guys in a community that would last until His death and after. Then He promised the Spirit to guide us on through time. What was the Sprit’s first order of business when He was revealed? Once again, before He sent out one apostle to minister, He established His community: the Church of Pentecost!
We believe the kingdom of heaven is now arising on earth in great power, in anticipation of the return of our King, and that the Spirit’s first order of business for this new age, as before, will be God’s people moving back into apostolic marketplace community.
The Marketplace Saints have a vision to provide an achievable, practical, reproducible model of sustainable Christian community that can be adopted by any group seeking to change church culture like Jesus did. We’re not seminarians, just passionate believers who think God anoints and sends out ordinary people to do extraordinary things with community as their solid foundation. The goal is to bring as much of life together as possible under one roof, for spending time together is critical to community.
Through this website you will be given the information you need to understand what it means to be a Marketplace Saint, build a marketplace Ecclesia community, and how you can get involved in this effort from a business, individual, group, or ministry standpoint.
Lighthouse Communities will have a twofold effect on the world around us. First, to network, encourage, and inform those with similar leadings to continue their passionate pursuit of apostolic fellowship. Second, to become distribution centers for both spiritual and physical needs, shining like beacons of God’s light in our marketplaces!
Ten Truths of Community:
- Jesus is the only way, truth, and life. Community is only possible through belief in Him and the networking of kingdom saints through the Holy Spirit as He directs.
- The children of God’s house always come before saving those outside. Jesus stated mission was to the lost children of God’s house (Matt. 15:24), and it was to them Jesus told His disciples to go (Matt. 10:6). Establishing community is the priority before reaching out to the unsaved. Twice in John 17 Jesus prays His community would be one “so that the world would know the Father sent Him.”
- We serve the kingdom of heaven on earth. The present church event-based model of religion serves the kingdom of man. Ours is the marketplace lifestyle-based model.
- It is within the Ecclesia community alone authentic models of discipleship and fellowship that we operate by (1 Cor. 14:26-31) are possible.
- Kingdom saints were created for community. It is where spiritual gifts are to be discovered, developed, and deployed (1 Cor. 12). It is the ultimate expression of God’s love, and the way Jesus said we would be known as His disciples (John 13:34-35).
- Community means spending as much time together as possible. Viable community must therefore include the marketplace, for that is where most people spend most of their time.
- Christian community is to engage culture, and shine like a city on a hill, not seclude ourselves in fear. We are to lovingly transform society through our example and words.
- Community means realizing God’s house is big enough for doctrinal differences that do not deny the foundational principles of the faith. There are no denominations in the kingdom. Grace and love must prevail over “straining on the gnats” of doctrine.
- Healthy communities maintain both inward [discipleship/spiritual gift formation] and outward [service/evangelism] focuses.
- Communities must be intentional about their mission. The community needs must take priority over individual needs [or in the instance of businesses, corporate goals and objectives]. Community is about everyone involved putting the body before all other needs. If the body is functioning properly everything else will work out.
These “LHCs” will incorporate individuals, businesses, and ministries spending time together, combined with an outreach venue [coffee shop/café] to display that community to the world. LHC’s will present abundant opportunities for all involved to live out God’s kingdom mandates.