The body dies when cells stop dividing, when it stops growing new cells. In fact, it is unhealthy and abnormal for cells to grow and not result in cell multiplication. The same is true of Sunday School multiplication. Without multiplication, classes and Sunday Schools tend to shrivel and die.
It is natural for cells to grow prior to multiplication. The nucleus, the brain of the cell, leads the way by multiplying prior to the cell. In other words, without a second nucleus, there will not be a second cell. Similarly, without new leaders, there will not be a new class. New leaders come first.
Sunday School Multiplication Lessons
There are many lessons about Sunday School classes in these facts. When we no longer start new classes, Sunday School begins declining. It does not remain the same. Classes do need to gain some maturity and numerical growth prior to starting new classes. Frequently activity level will be higher shortly before multiplication.
For instance, the teacher leads the class to multiply by apprenticing a new leader. Keep in mind that if the teacher is against multiplication, it is unlikely that it will occur. Like the cell without a second nucleus, a class without an apprentice will not usually start a needed new class. Two leaders (the teacher and apprentice) will result in more ministry, care, and work being. Two can provide a better span of care and leadership.
What is the appropriate balance between growth and Sunday School multiplication? It is more than the issue of an ideal number at which a class should multiply. Multiplication requires vitality. This health is essential in order for both classes not only to survive but thrive. Revolutionary Sunday School pursues an environment that encourages multiplication–for classes and for leaders.
What are the class vitals necessary for this to happen? Consider the following questions:
- Is the class free from conflict?
- Has good communication been established?
- Have leadership roles been established and practiced?
- Are relationships being continually strengthened? Is trust deepening?
- Are needs being met? Is ministry occurring?
- Is the class on mission? Do they have a mission in the community and world?
- Have more leaders been enlisted and trained than are needed in one class?
- Have leaders for a new class been identified, prayed for, trained, and prepared?
At the same time, it is a balancing act. New classes are desperately needed. The Lord sends out classes and individuals to make disciples of all nations. And two healthy classes can reach and care for more disciples. Will you prepare new leaders? Will you lead your class to multiply? Make disciples. Be revolutionary!