I have long contended that Apostolics do not have a problem getting a home Bible study (HBS). They instead have a problem getting people willing to teach them. With a little effort, churches can usually have more Bible studies than they can teach. How can a church line up many dozens of HBS’s each year and keep their trained teachers busy teaching? Here’s how:
First, offer the HBS ministry in your guest packet. Include a nice full-page flyer on how great a HBS is and how it will enhance your knowledge of the Bible. Your guest card should also have a box to check that says, “I would like information on having a home Bible study in my home.”
Second, make it a habit to talk about the HBS ministry over the pulpit. Promote it at least weekly. Occasionally have the users walk down the aisle with HBS request slips, handing them out to those that desire one.
Third, train your altar workers to ask for a HBS at the altar. Once people are finished praying, they should be offered a HBS.
Fourth, make HBS a strong part of your visitor follow-up ministry. The letter from the pastor should mention it, and the follow-up worker who knocks on the door should ask (after giving them a small gift bag and inviting them back), “Have you heard about our home Bible study ministry? No? Let me tell you about it!”
Fifth, once a year bring in an outside speaker to talk to the church about the HBS ministry. This can be a pastor with a strong HBS ministry in his church or an evangelist that has been successful with the HBS ministry. At the service conclusion, ask people to come forward who wish to be a HBS teacher. Starting the next night, offer a one, two, or three evening seminar (or all day Saturday) on how to teach a HBS. This training should include instruction on how to set up HBS’s with your family, friends and coworkers.
Sixth, once a year sponsor an “Open Your Home to A Home Bible Study” promotion. The thrust here is for people to host a HBS in their home: i.e. “You supply the home and we will supply the teacher.” A simple contest works well here. Divide the church into two teams and the team that teaches/hosts the most HBS’s wins.
Finally, every few months contact all your trained HBS teachers and those that are not currently teaching, offer to take them out on a Saturday and let them use the Quest Survey door-to-door to get HBS’s. With a few hours effort, almost anyone can come back with several HBS’s to teach.