Roman House Churches
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Roman House Churches

Jewish Gentile Mixture

Roman House ChurchesRoman house churches were often of a Jewish Gentile mixture of believers who met separately in different places. This historical reality created certain tensions and required a response from Paul in Romans 14.1 where he advised, "Accept the one whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters. One person’s faith allows them to eat anything, but another, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables." and Romans 14.5, "One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike." In effect, Saint Paul's letter was saying that all believers should respect each other's ethnic, religious and social diversity and live together in unity.✞

Priscilla and Aquilla

There is currently no accurate way to determine how many house churches existed in Rome in Paul's day. Most of the evidence appeared in Romans 16, which contained Paul's greetings and commendations to a number of individuals. He wrote, "I commend to you our sister Phoebe, a deacon of the church in Cenchreae. I ask you to receive her in the Lord in a way worthy of his people and to give her any help she may need from you, for she has been the benefactor of many people, including me. Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my co-workers in Christ Jesus. They risked their lives for me. Not only I but all the churches of the Gentiles are grateful to them." Some of the named individuals in this chapter were simply Paul's friends and coworkers, but when Paul named certain individuals and refers to "other" people in the same verse, he may have churches in mind. Arthur G. Patzia in "The Emergence of the Church - Context, Growth, Leadership and Worship" suggest the possibilities include,

"Roman House Churches"
by Ron Meacock © 2018

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