The PLNTD Network
PLNTD is a decentralized network focused on establishing and multiplying confessional church-planting churches. We seek to do this through providing rich resources, intentional relationships, and accessible church-based ministries, including assessment, training and coaching. It is our firm conviction that to fulfill the Great Commission inherently means that we must embrace the call to plant churches, and no one else is given that stewardship more than the local church.
PLNTD exists because we believe in the local church and embrace the call of the Great Commission. PLNTD is a decentralized network of churches and church planters fostering kingdom partnerships around the framework of being gospel-centered, missionally driven, distinctively Baptist, and confessionally Reformed.
Our purpose is derived from text and context. Textually, we see that church planting is the natural outcome of enduring commitment to the Great Commission. Contextually, we believe that a church-based network is not only the best way to advance God’s kingdom in an area but also the best place for church planters to be trained and supported. It is our desire to be able to facilitate both: developing church planters as well as church planting churches.
Vision: in the church | by the church | for the church
The vision of PLNTD is twofold: to cultivate community for church planters and assist churches in the process of becoming church planting churches.
PLNTD . . . in the church
We believe the most natural place from which church planting should originate is the local church. Simply put, churches reproduce churches. If the work of church planting is outsourced to parachurch organizations, denominational entities or conventions, then we are asking them to do for the church what they were neither authorized nor equipped to accomplish. The seed for church planting should find fertile soil in every gospel-centered church. Believing this to be true, PLNTD wants to bring the responsibility of church planting back to its most natural context.
PLNTD . . . by the church
Jesus Christ has given to every local church the call to plant churches. Inherent to the Great Commission is the call to advance the kingdom of God through church planting. Therefore, the responsibility lies at the feet of covenant communities of God’s people scattered throughout to be good stewards of the gospel in making disciple-making disciples who are gathered together as church planting churches. Through cooperation, churches can assist, encourage, and support one another in remaining fervent and faithful in this glorious task.
PLNTD . . . for the church
Because Christ has promised to build His church, we are committed to the expansion of His kingdom through church planting. Churches exist for Jesus Christ, and He is glorified when they are multiplied. We belong to Jesus Christ, and the Great Commission belongs to us; therefore, we are united to Him in pursuing the mission of God through church multiplication. Together, these realities fuel a passion for church planting and give a kingdom perspective knowing that we are stewards of the very purposes Christ has promised to fulfill to the praise of His glory.
PLNTD is an intentionally decentralized network. There is no centralized office or paid staff. We are a team of pastors of church planting churches and/or church planters. In other words, our primary work is not PLNTD as a network but our respective churches, and we believe that is what makes PLNTD important. The network exists to serve and equip local churches and church planters, period. The benefit of being decentralized keeps the network flexible and capable of expanding for kingdom advance.
PLNTD believes that the health and progress of both church planters and churches are determined by the centrality of the gospel. The gospel lies at the heart of everything we do and functions as a hermeneutic and grid through which we evaluate everything we do. We believe the gospel cannot be assumed, truncated, shelved, or marginalized at any point in the existence of the local church. More than anything else, we desire to train church planters who love the gospel, preach the gospel, share the gospel, and stand on the gospel as the source of their hope, ground for their confidence, and cause for perseverance in the journey of planting, establishing, and reproducing more gospel-centered churches.
PLNTD seeks to harness the missionary zeal for the advance of the kingdom through church planting. We do not see mission as a department of the church but essential with the nature of the church. As a sent people, we endeavor to be a catalyst for equipping churches to embrace this calling through structural transitioning to bring greater alignment for church multiplication. As a network of churches, we seek to incorporate a full-orbed vision of God’s mission that encompasses the entirety of church life. God’s mission coupled with God’s church and gospel are woven together as the DNA of the network’s existence.
While there is a great need for networks across the evangelical landscape, PLNTD is committed to planting churches who are distinctively baptistic. This does not mean that we do not cooperate or share resources with other like-minded evangelical organizations or networks. However, as convinced Baptists, we are seeking to network, plant, and support churches who hold to key doctrinal distinctives such as believers’ baptism, regenerate church membership, congregational polity, and the priesthood of all believers. If the researchers are correct regarding the decline and closing of Baptist churches, then there is never a more needed time than now for renewal and revitalization through a grassroots movement in this generation.
PLNTD networks confessional churches that adhere to the tenets of Reformation theology—sola scriptura (Scripture alone), sola gratia (grace alone), sola fide (faith alone), solus Christus (Christ alone), and soli deo gloria (glory of God alone). The historic Abstract of Principles (1858) serves to establish confessional boundaries. Being confessional means that we are pre-committed to foundational truths that unite us in what we believe as well as affirm the kind of churches we seek to plant and support. Recognizing that every healthy church will be “reformed and always reforming according to the Word of God”, we desire to create a culture where the foundation of fidelity to Scripture serves as platform for ongoing reformation under the Lordship and Headship of Jesus Christ.