CHILDREN’S CHURCH? by Eddie Johnson Amarillo, TX
Does Biblical precedent exist for separating one group of the congregation from another when the Word of God is being preached by the man of God? If one could find such an example in the Scriptures, then this practice would clearly be justified as right and proper with the Lord. This practice might even have permissive justification if no example to the contrary were to be found resulting from a search of the Scriptures.
My finding is the admonition of the Apostle Paul addressing the assembly at Ephesus in Ephesians 6:1-3, “Children, obey your parents in The Lord; for this is right. Honour my father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise; That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.” Since he addressed them directly in this epistle, then it seems that to Paul the very best situation of worship, Biblical instruction, and outreach for the children of this assembly during their worship service was for them to be assembling with their parents under the preaching of the Word of God. So, the practice of separating children to a gathering of their own during the worship service of a New Testament church is a practice not found in the Bible. Indeed such a practice has a specific example to the contrary. Wherefore, when considering the outreach of a church family to the children born within and without the congregation, let the question be, “Why have a Children’s Church?”
Originally published in The Baptist Waymark, Vol. IV, No. 2, Mar-Apr 1996, p. 4, R. L. Vaughn, editor