Isn’t renting facilities for worship a necessary inference?


Regarding "Necessary Inference," I am amused at the simplicity of learning that necessary inference promotes.

Necessary inference doesn't add anything to the equation but simply brings together all of the elements whether in the stated equation or the equation as a whole.

For example Lydia. If it had stated some of the people within her household then you could infer those people would have been baptized since they were listed as part of the household. But to infer children were present in her household would be adding to the equation which isn't allowed when using necessary inference.

Therefore necessary inference simply is a process of understanding all of the elements whether stated together or elsewhere that you can draw on to obtain the complete picture.

Such as Christ's baptism in which all elements are stated and you are adding nothing by inferring Christ went into the water since he came up out of the water. Such a simple necessary inference, which most of them are, is because it is merely an understanding of the event.

Let's move on to something more desirable and watch the necessary inference take on a new life of its own. Let's talk about the church building. The church building is almost always justified by necessary inference. If I remember correctly the gathering places used in the New Testament were outside, the temple, houses, and upper rooms. There could be more but this will get us started. The components are these locations and the members along with the meeting on the first day of the week. Without adding, you have the members gathering on the first day of the week at a location not owned by the church or gathering as a whole to worship God. The examples were owned by the members, the Jews, or somebody else other than the church or gathering.

Let's move forward to today. We deem it necessary to build a building due to necessary inference because we need a place to worship. But using necessary inference from the examples we have to add ownership to the equation as well as some argue the type of building unless you use the temple as a comparison to a church building.

Thus, you can see it is wrong to use necessary inference to justify building a building because you have added to the equation something that wasn't an original component. Also, you have changed the dynamics of the church or gathering from spreading the gospel by supporting preachers, such as Paul in the early church or gatherings, to a heavy-laden debt congregation by adding debt to the members. By using Luke 14:28-29, we would all have a much better-balanced budget for doing the work of the church instead of a budget that reflects almost no money to carry out the work of the church.


Notice that you use a different definition of what constitutes a necessary inference from the one that brother Johnson presented. From this alternative definition, you then claim that conclusions should be supported.

Let's start with your example of a meeting location. You argue that churches should only meet in locations that are not owned by the church from a list of examples. You reached this conclusion by finding a category that all your examples fit into and then claiming that is the only category that may be used. The problem is that your conclusion is not necessary. For instance, all the locations were on land, do I conclude that you cannot meet on a boat? None of the locations had electrical wiring. Do I conclude that you can't use a facility that has electric lights?

There are commands that the church must meet (Hebrews 10:25; I Corinthians 14:23,26). We have examples of churches meeting in a variety of locations. The necessary conclusion is that there isn't one type of location needed to fulfill the command to assemble. We then address what is the most expedient way for a congregation to carry out the command to assemble for worship and teaching the gospel. You claim that renting or borrowing is cheaper, but that isn't true in many locations. Borrowing puts the congregation at the mercy of the owner that a place will be available. It doesn't make it an effective way to meet each Lord's Day if you aren't certain where or when you will be able to meet. In some regions renting is cheaper but in most regions of the world, owning a building is less expensive in the long run. That a congregation chooses to purchase a facility for its use, doesn't lead to the conclusion that they are wasting the Lord's money.

For more on expediency, see Can you explain "expediency"?

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