Submitted by Robin Corner, Director, 222 Foundation
This draft plan for multiplication of authentic Christian discipleship in Kenya has been submitted to a number of Kenyan Christian leaders and people of goodwill for their consideration, by 222 Foundation, an international Christian organisation founded to train Christian believers in the principles of DMM/CPM.
The last 2 or 3 decades have been a time of incredible challenge for the church worldwide, but also time of tremendous advancement of the kingdom of God. We have seen rapidly growing “Discipleship Multiplication Movements” (DMM’s) and Church Planting Movements (CPM’s) among many previously unreached people groups, and well documented healings, signs and wonders in different parts of the world. Notable amongst these has been the church planting movement of Victor Choudhrie in India, where, it has been claimed that upwards of 1 million new believers are coming to faith every year, and that 90% of the new churches have been started as a result of a miracle of God.
Given this environment, it seems reasonable to expect great things of God, especially since the emergence of the new methodology of DMM/CPM, carrying with it the understanding of the principles of multiplication and discipleship, and the great signs and wonders being seen in different parts of the world. Added to this, there has been a great weight of prophetic revelation of God’s intended blessing towards Africa, and towards Kenya in particular.
The year 2015 was one in which West Kenyan CPM practitioners reflected on what they were taught in 2013 and 2014 and in which certain leadership issues were resolved. Some new leaders emerged, and new CPM streams were started. In our ministry (the ministry of 222 Foundation) we came to grips with the “Business as Mission” concept and integrated it with our CPM strategy.
2016 – getting ready
2016 emerged as a year to reignite and reorganise the CPM and set it on a steady course to have major impact on the nation. On 30 January a training meeting was held in Bungoma, (West Kenya) which was attended by 31 leaders of house churches, church starts, or Christian discipleship groups who agreed to come together again. The group adopted the following DMM vision statement and goals. However, for the most part, there was not the focused effort required to bring the vision to reality.
OBJECTIVES OF THE CHURCH PLANTING MOVEMENT IN KENYA – A VISION STATEMENT
- That the West Kenyan CPM should expand to impact the whole of Kenya, to the extent that, should Jesus return, a minimum of 50% of the population should be saved (Mat 24:40-41).
- To teach people coming to faith through the movement to be true disciples of Jesus, doing all the things that he did and commanded, and being filled and led by the Holy Spirit, equipped to fulfil the high call of God on their lives (Mat 28:18-20; Acts 1:4-5; Rom 8:14; Eph 4:11-16).
- To see the church/churches in Kenya built to a Biblical level of purity, maturity and manifestation of the Holy Spirit and presence of God (Mat 16:18; 1Pet 2:4-5; Rev 19:6-8).
- To see Kenya transformed, and this transformation to be seen in such measures as literacy; poverty; child health statistics; transparency and integrity; employment; productivity; violence; crime statistics and GDP (Deut 28:1-14).
- To send apostles and disciples to other nations to help start similar movements in those nations (John 17:18-23).
To set a goal in relation to objective 1, there needs to be an understanding of the word “saved”. Estimates of the professing “Christian” population in Kenya range from 70 – 80+ %, but it is obvious that many are Christians in name only. The level of corruption alone indicates this. According to Transparency International’s corruption index, Kenya is in the second highest corruption bracket, scoring 25, and ranking 139 out of the 168 countries assessed. If say 75% of Kenya’s population were walking in the light of Jesus, living out lives of truth, integrity, holiness and fairness, it would be impossible that the nation would be among the world’s most corrupt. So we must assume that a much lower percentage than this are actually “saved” (Matt 7:21-23; John 14:21-24; Romans 8:14; 1 John 2:3-6, 28; 3:4-9).
Of course God alone knows who is truly saved, but if a person is a committed member of a “T4T” (Training for Trainers) style home church or discipleship group, it is likely they are saved because they are accountable to a small group of fellow disciples to set themselves goals on a life of spiritual growth and sharing the Gospel with others.
One can assume that most people who are not saved would not want to join a group like this. Therefore our goal in relation to objective 1, “to see 50% of the population saved”, is to see 50% of the population participating in healthy, vibrant home-based churches or discipleship groups connected with a church.
Kenya has a population of 40.5 million. There are between 10 and 20 members in each house church, so to see half the population members of a house church, we need 1,350,000 house churches, or Christian discipleship groups, assuming an average of 15 members in each. There are various estimates of the current number of house churches in Kenya but it seems likely that there more than 250 in Western Kenya. So working on a conservative estimate of 250 as a baseline, we can challenge each church or discipleship group to facilitate the starting of two new churches or groups each year as a minimum – giving a multiplication factor of 3 – the original house church plus two new ones – each year. It doesn’t seem unreasonable to believe for this; many streams of house churches are multiplying much faster than this now. If the churches are able multiply at this rate, we will have over 1,350,000 churches in less than eight years, as shown in the following calculation:
250 x 3 x 3 x 3 x 3 x 3 x 3 x 3 x 3 = 1,640,250
This is a mind blowing figure for those who are not familiar with church planting movements, but for those who have studied the success of Victor Choudhrie’s movement in India, and other CPM’s around the world, surely it is believable. In 2 Peter 3:9 Peter assures us that God is not willing that any should perish; so we must believe that God is able to change a nation in this manner.
Of course God is sovereign, and we can never say that the spiritual climate of a nation has changed because of our methods, and our efforts. So we must hold the goals loosely, and be prepared to let God change our goals. But this proposal suggests we ask God for half the Kenya population be radically saved within 8 years.
A methodology is necessary to ensure that believers are trained to multiply the churches as described, and so that the other objectives are attained.
There are two main training areas we will briefly describe here:
1. Experiential teaching on the Holy Spirit
For the believers to have the kind of power necessary to facilitate the kind of movement described here, they need to be filled with the Holy Spirit as Jesus commanded in Luke 24:49 and also be led and guided by the Holy Spirit on a day-to-day basis to be effective in evangelism and ministry (Romans 8:14; John 5:19; John 14:12). This topic is covered in my 222 Discipleship Training Manual. We also have Stuart Gramenz, 222 Foundation International Board member, and Bishop Jacob Phiri of Zambia to give ongoing advice on this. The daily life of being filled with the Holy Spirit fulfils the other objectives described previously: spiritual growth of individuals and churches, the impact on Kenyan culture and life, and the power to be witnesses to Jesus and his work in Kenya in other nations of the world are all made possible by the daily filling and leading of the Holy Spirit.
2. Four Fields training programme
I am partnering with Chuck Wood for the implementation of the Four Fields training. Details of the training can be found on his website www.juio.net .
Some of the Four fields topics of particular usefulness are:
- “Framily” (friends and family) map for identifying who to share the Gospel with.
- House of peace search
- Gospel stories and how to share them
- Sharing your testimony
- Leading people to the Lord
- T4T meetings
- Multi-generational church networks
- Church formation
The network mapping tools are very valuable for tracking the network, verifying which churches have been started, and ongoing training.
Margaret and I will make plans to visit Kenya again at least once or twice this year. We look forward to planning implementation of this campaign with our wonderful co-workers in Kenya.
Robin Corner Feb 2016, updated April 2017