Wherever two or three are gathered…


#1

Wherever two or three are gathered…
By Randy Carson

Non-denominational Christians often reject the concept of a structured, hierarchical Church led by bishops, priests and deacons. One of their common objections is that the “church” exists wherever two or three believers are gathered in His name. Is this really how the Bible defines the Church? Let’s take a closer look at the Word of God to see if this is true.

Matthew 18:19-20
19"Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. 20For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them."

From this passage, many Christians conclude that the “church” is composed of small groups of believers that come together from time to time. While it is true that Jesus has promised to be with believers who are gathered in His name, it is obvious from another passage that this is not how Jesus Himself defines the Church.

In fact, just a few verses earlier, Jesus had given a fuller picture of the Church when He said:

Matthew 18:15-17
15"If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over. 16But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ 17If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a tax collector.”

If “two or three” believers gathered together really constitutes the “church” (as envisioned by those who reject “organized religion”), then it would not be necessary for us to refer the one who sins against us to “the church”. Doing so would be redundant! To the contrary, it is obvious in this passage that Jesus actually makes a clear distinction between the “two or three others” in verse 16 and “the church” in verse 17.

Clearly, Jesus does not consider that “two or three” constitute the Church that He Himself would build. Neither should we. Beginning with Peter, the rock, and the apostles, Jesus has built the Church just as He promised through their successors—the bishops, priests and deacons of the Catholic Church.

Thoughts and critiques welcomed. :tiphat:


#2

At Pentecost, there were approximately 120 people gathered together into one church. Christ claimed to found one church, not 40.

Much less 30,000.


#3

One of the things I’ve begun to learn since entering this forum is that catholics often misunderstand protestants far more than I ever imagined. this thread illistrates this. protestants believe in only one mystical body. however, they tend not to believe that a particular identifiable political body has the monopoly on the physical appearance of that mystical body. so the 2 or 3 argument does’nt mean that there are seperate churches where-ever seperate groups of two or three are gathered. what it means is that where-ever 2 or more people are gathered in the name of Christ in sincere devotion to him there is the physical appearance of the one mystical body. these denominations appear distinct in opinion and culture but are united by one common belief–a belief that in detail actually corresponds to the apostles creed.

if this seems strange, consider all the varying opinions permitted within catholocism. catholics are not required to believe in every vision of every saint, yet they are permitted to believe in several. hence some catholics put a great deal of importance on the madonna of medjugoria while other’s are stearnly in oposition. some catholics accept the pastoral councel of the vattican ii while other’s remain loyal to the catholic faith but practice without taking the vattican ii council into account. some catholics are pentecostal and other’s are not. all these variations are permitted within catholocism.

protestants claim unity not by being able to point to a particular person as leader of all denominations, but by the same Spirit of God working in them who have received Him. 1 corrinthians 3:1-10


#4

Being a protestant for many years, switching camps often, lets face it we have 30,000 to chose from. I just wonder why God would lead millions and millions of his faithful astray when there was only ONE recognised universal christian church while patiently waiting for Martin Luther and a King who had a choice of obeying his fathers death wish of an heir… or God.

Yes as catholics we do have a lot of freedom of choice… whatever is not dogma as defined by the Magestarium, we can contemplate and use our God given intelligence. But to reject the 7 great sacraments which Christ gave to His church because of pride of men is the price one pays for not recognising the true faith.

I am really happy you have joined this Forum… God Bless you for it… We all pray that you come home to the one true church:signofcross:


#5

HMMMMM- Wherever two or three are gathered?

Then every Burger King and bowling alley , Mcdonalds even the mall? How about the park? Are those “churches”?

Where ever “Christians get together”? and ask for something?

How about a whole baseball team asking for a win?

Do you think that is what Jesus meant?


#6

So how is this view of yours consistent with your notion that if the Bible is inconsistent the Catholic Church is true? Isn’t it a problem that all of these various Protestant bodies disagree completely on many things, therefore are internally consistent, and indicate that either the Holy Spirit spouts completely different things one day than the next (as Luther did) or that they are in fact not inspired by the Holy Spirit at all?

Seems you have some consistency issues to work out.


#7

Hi
Is there a quote in this connection from the OTBible?
Jesus was raised from childhood as a Jew by Mary who herself was trained by Zechariah a Jewish Prophet. Jesus always referred to OTBible for religious guidance as he was a subordinate Prophet and follower of Moses - the principal.
The Catholics must follow what Jesus did, that is why I have asked this little question.Please don’t mind. I love Jesus and Mary.
Thanks


#8

:rotfl: Paarsurrey do you mean the prophet that wrote about 520-518 BC:rotfl:


#9

Luke 1
5 In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zacharias, of the division of Abijah; and he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.

Did you mean John th Baptist’s father, who was alive at the time of Mary and was married to Elizabeth her cousin? Who Mary spent three months with?

Luke 1
Mary Visits Elizabeth

39Now at this time Mary arose and went in a hurry to the hill country,** to a city of Judah**,

40and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth.

41When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.

42And she cried out with a loud voice and said, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!

43**"And how has it happened to me, that the mother of my Lord would come to me? **

44"For behold, when the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby leaped in my womb for joy.

45"And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what had been spoken to her by the Lord."

56And Mary stayed with her about three months, and then returned to her home.

Why would Elizabeth, filled with the Holy Spirit, call Mary the mother of her Lord (God) if Jesus was just a "subordinate Prophet "?


#10

Hi
English is not my mother tongue; I could not understand the meaning of your above sentence.
Could you please elaborate it for me ?
Thanks

**Since Jesus left no written Word of GodAllahYHWH revealed on him, or authenticated by him when he last departed from Galilee; hence my Catholic friends believe many creeds created by the Catholic Clergy **not originated by Jesus in person.


#11

You need ten adult Jewish males for a minyan, or prayer group. That’s an idea that Christians don’t accept.

However we don’t reject the idea of a priesthood. Two or three gathered together without a priest is not the same as priest together with people. However two or three with a priest is substantially the same as several thousand with a priest.


#12

Jesus was raised from childhood as a Jew by Mary who herself was trained by Zechariah a Jewish Prophet.

I was referring to this statement by you. The prophet Zechariah was born 500 years before Jesus. It was funny that you said he taught Mary. I suppose you mean someone else but who:shrug:


#13

[quote=paarsurrey;2480837
]Since Jesus left no written Word of GodAllahYHWH revealed on him, or authenticated by him when he last departed from Galilee; hence my Catholic friends believe many creeds created by the Catholic Clergy not originated by Jesus in person.
[/quote]

paarsurrey, your Catholic friends say, for example, the Apostle’s Creed. That Creed is a list of our most basic beliefs. Our beliefs come from Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, Who inspires the Church to teach us the truth. So your statement seems to say that Catholics say creeds created by men and not coming from Jesus. Rather, we say creeds written by men who were guided by God.


#14

Paarsurrey-

My apologies, but I don’t understand the question. Is there a quote in connection with WHAT from the Old Testament?


#15

Hi
Sorry for the inconvinience.
Sir you wrote and quoted from NTBible:

church? exists wherever two or three believers are gathered in His name. Is this really how the Bible defines the Church? Let?s take a closer look at the Word of God to see if this is true.
Matthew 18:19-20
Matthew 18:15-17Thoughts and critiques welcomed.

I asked to provide references in this connection from OTBible also as Jesus often quoted from the OTBible.
Thanks


#16

Hi
What was the name of the father of John the baptist?
He was the tutor of Mary, as I understand.
Thanks


#17

Hi
Thank you. I meant this Zacharias.
Lord as per usage of the OTBible is not synonymous with God.
Thanks


#18

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