Two Or Three In My Name

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Hi D____,

Thank you for your encouraging words and for your question about fellowship.
What your pastor did to you is just what we should expect from those who are protecting their turf rather than protecting God’s holy things, the truths of His Word. You are indeed blessed to be found worthy to suffer for Christ’s name’s sake.
I am thankful for your question, because you are both physically isolated, and you feel that you are spiritually isolated and unable to enjoy the fellowship of brothers and sisters of like mind, the mind of Christ.
Your question and your situation afford an example of one who wants to fellowship but cannot. The comments I made in the audio you reference were in no way intended to trouble those who appreciate the need and the functions of all the members of a single body. After all, there are many members of this one body who are not physically isolated, as you are, but they still feel spiritually isolated while living in cities with millions of other people. Fellowship has much more to do with “being of one mind” than it has to do with the physical number of people in a physical room.
It has always struck me that there is no mention of a church of Athens, the largest city Paul visited and in which he also preached. There were very likely some who responded to Paul’s words and yet, as far as history is concerned in the pages of scripture, there is no mention of a church being raised up in Athens. But physical isolation in no way isolates us from Christ and His body. We are one in Christ whether we are in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Europe, India, Asia, Africa or Australia, the islands of the Pacific, Central and South America or anywhere on earth. Christ is one, and His body is one.

1Co 12:12 For even as the body is one and has many members, yet all the members of the one body, being many, are one body, thus also is the Christ

If you have not yet done so, be sure to listen to and read the study notes of the Dallas 2007 conference talk entitled What Is The Christ? and another talk entitled The Revelation of Jesus Christ As The Christ. The doctrine of ‘the Christ’ is throughout the New Testament, but the translators, being totally blinded to the things of the spirit, did not know why the article ‘the’ was there so often. It seemed awkward to have to say “so also is the Christ.” Leaving the article off just seemed to read better, and so here in 1Co 12 and in dozens of other verses, the article was simply ignored, and this revelation that Christ has a christ was hidden from the masses of orthodox Christianity. But it is right there in God’s Word, and what this doctrine reveals is that Christ has sent His christ to do exactly what His Father sent Him to do.

Joh 20:21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.

My point in that audio was that Christ did not avoid being around people. Christ loved being around people. He actually considered all of His disciples to be his brothers, sisters and mother:

Mar 3:31 There came then his brethren and his mother, and, standing without, sent unto him, calling him.
Mar 3:32 And the multitude sat about him, and they said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren without seek for thee.
Mar 3:33 And he answered them, saying, Who is my mother, or my brethren?
Mar 3:34 And he looked round about on them which sat about him, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren!
Mar 3:35 For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother.

We are Christ’s family, but more than family, we are also His very body, and “no man yet hated his own flesh.”

Eph 5:29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:

Eph 5 is the marriage chapter, and Paul is talking about husbands and wives loving each other. Here in the next verse is His point in doing so:

Eph 5:30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.

Now if this is truly the case in our hearts, then there is simply no way that a person who really is part of that body, could possibly not enjoy and appreciate being able to look about him and see His arms, belly and thighs, legs and feet and all the parts of his own body.
This is what I was addressing in that audio. There is a wrong spirit which actually tells us that Christ died for us and for us alone. Such is not the case. Not one of us has been called or chosen for the sole purpose of securing only our salvation. We are not given this knowledge solely for our own benefit. Far from it! We are called for the specified purpose of becoming Christ’s christ:

Joh 20:21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.
Rom 11:30 For as ye in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief:
Rom 11:31 Even so have these also now not believed, that through your mercy they also may obtain mercy.

What did Christ’s Father send Him to do? Why was Christ sent into this world? What was His commission?

1Ti 1:15 This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.

What would Christ’s Father have thought if Christ had decided to go out into the wilderness and just stay there, studying God’s word and coming to know His Father better every day, but never coming to the point of sharing with others the blessings he had been given. This is the attitude of a monk or a nun, and it has no foundation in “the doctrine of Jesus Christ.”
Am I saying that there is not a time to study and pray and become familiar with God’s Word? No, I am not. There must be a time of preparation. Christ Himself waited until He was thirty years old before He began His ministry. I have written much on this topic. I have letters in which I have emphasized Joseph’s time in slavery in Egypt and Paul’s time in Tarsus before the holy spirit said “separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” But even in those cases, both men were taking advantage of any opportunity to be a witness to those around them.

Gen 41:46 And Joseph was thirty years old when he stood before Pharaoh king of Egypt. And Joseph went out from the presence of Pharaoh, and went throughout all the land of Egypt.
Luk 3:23 And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, which was the son of Heli,
Act 13:2 As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.

Paul and Barnabas were not called to be deacons and wait on tables. Am I in any way placing Paul and Barnabas above a deacon? I am doing nothing of the sort. Most Christians cannot share their new found knowledge with others in an articulate and convincing and convicting manner, and yet we are all part of one body which does get the Truth of God’s Word out to those who are being called out of Babylon and which body also witnesses against all the false doctrines of Babylon. God places each of us in that body as He sees fit. I cannot begin to express the gratitude I feel toward every person who simply takes the time to write words of gratitude and words of encouragement for the work God is doing through those of us who make the ministry of iswasandwillbe. com possible. My writings are the result of many brothers and sisters from all around the world, fellowshipping with one another and sharpening one another in the word and doctrine of Christ.
There are several brothers who also have blogs of their own who are being used of God to share the revelation of Christ and His christ with others. Check out Aaron Lohman’s on Paltalk and his weekly bible study over skype.
There are small groups all around the world, many of only two or three, gathered together in the name of the True Christ; and there are even far more who are like you. They have absolutely no one at all with whom to share their new found blessings. That was the case with Christ Himself. Sure He had disciples who thought they had heard and seen the mysteries of the kingdom of God through Christ’s parables, but not even Christ’s own chosen apostles understood what He was teaching in His parables. Not one was willing to die with Him for His gospel and His doctrine.

Luk 9:43 And they were all amazed at the mighty power of God. But while they wondered every one at all things which Jesus did, he said unto his disciples,
Luk 9:44 Let these sayings sink down into your ears: for the Son of man shall be delivered into the hands of men.
Luk 9:45 But they understood not this saying, and it was hid from them, that they perceived it not: and they feared to ask him of that saying
Joh 12:16 These things understood not his disciples at the first: but when Jesus was glorified, then remembered they that these things were written of him, and that they had done these things unto him.

But Christ was not alone for the same reason you are not alone.

Joh 8:16 And yet if I judge, my judgment is true: for I am not alone, but I and the Father that sent me.
Joh 16:32 Behold, the hour cometh, yea, is now come, that ye shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave me alone: and yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me.

If what the apostle said is true, and “evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse”, then God’s people are more scattered than ever.

2Ti 3:13 But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.

Christ, at that time just like His christ to this very day, is forsaken by all, and yet He is never alone, simply because “My Father is with me. As we always do, we have taken God’s spiritual word which is used of the holy spirit to “teach comparing spiritual things with spiritual,” and we have wrapped that ‘gold’ which was given to us by God, around our own idols of the heart.” In other words we have taken this verse, and we have compared physical with physical or maybe physical with spiritual, and have tried to force God’s hand, and demand that He give us a person in our lives with whom we can fellowship. Here is that much abused word:

Mat 18:20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

Christ knew that these were spiritual words dealing with a spiritual concept. When He was condemned by the Jews for bearing witness of Himself, He denied ever doing so.

Joh 5:31 If I bear witness of myself, my witness is not true.
Joh 5:32 There is another that beareth witness of me; and I know that the witness which he witnesseth of me is true.
Joh 8:18 I am one that bear witness of myself, and t he Father that sent me beareth witness of me.

How often have I and others like me thought, ‘Well, it is no wonder Christ was killed, He really didn’t have anyone else to witness for Him.’ In so doing I also was denying the witness of the Old Testament that “another prophet,” another reformer like Moses, was witnessed to come and to be rejected of God’s people.

Deu 18:15 The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken;
Deu 18:16 According to all that thou desiredst of the LORD thy God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God, neither let me see this great fire any more, that I die not.
Deu 18:17 And the LORD said unto me, They have well [ spoken that] which they have spoken.
Deu 18:18 I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.
Deu 18:19 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him.

When we compare spiritual with spiritual we are in the exact same place in which Christ found himself. There is no one around us but God’s own word with whom to claim a second witness, and most of the time there is no one but God and His word with whom to find fellowship.
So I hope this helps you to see that while we should take every opportunity to assemble together physically, it is even more important that we be ‘assembled together spiritually’ being of ‘one mind in one body with one spirit and one Lord and one baptism of the water by the Word.’
God’s Word is more of a “second witness” than are all the multitudes of Babylon.

Rom 3:3 For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect?
Rom 3:4 God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged.

When it is, let him also be your fellowship “in spirit.” We really are with one another “in spirit”.

1Co 5:3 For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed,
1Co 5:4 In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ,

So when you are listening in on our Bible studies, you are with us and we with you if we both have the mind and spirit of Christ and His doctrines and His Words.
You have friends all around the world, who are praying with you and for you. I pray that Christ will give to you the ability to realize that your fellowship is in Him, and not in the physical number of people who are gathered in a physical room. By all means, we should take advantage of any opportunity to fellowship with others who are of the same mind and spirit, but when that is not physically possible, then this is as true today as it every was:

Mar 14:27 And Jesus saith unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered.
Mat 18:20 For where two or three [ Christ and His christ] are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

Stay in God’s Word. That Word is Christ, and He will never leave or forsake you:

Mat 28:20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

Your brother in Christ,
Mike

Other related posts