The new Testament describes the Church as, “the body of Christ”, and we believers as , “members of it”.
Jesus said “Where 2 or 3 are gathered in my name I am there in the midst of them”.
Thus a, “Jesus gathering” at its most basic, is when two or more gather together in his name. This meeting will have many names; house church, Bible study, get-together, those people who meet at…….’s house, or whatever. The name does not matter. It equally doesn’tmatter where they meet. They can meet in a home, some sort of religious building, a restaurant or coffee shop or anywhere else. I once knew of the group that met under a motorway bridge. The place does not matter, the purpose is to meet in Jesus name.
In each town, city or locality the small “Jesus gatherings” constitute “the local Church”. This local church is not part of some pyramidical structure, but rather a recognition of all of the Jesus gatherings in a particular place. It is not defined as any particular gathering of God’s people, but rather all of God’s people in a particular place. Sometimes it will be necessary for gatherings, or meetings of this body, for example to recognise elders or leaders across all of the local gatherings.
On an even wider scale, at various times and places it has been necessary for the Church, as a gathering of all of God’s people, to make decisions that can reach to encompass the whole church, historically these Jesus gatherings are called Church councils. The earliest example of a meeting like this is recorded in the Book of Acts, where the discussion of the earliest, mostly Jewish disciples, centered around the obligations of Gentile believers. This council basically recognized the extension of God’s grace to the whole world, to all who would believe. This council was open to all believers; apostles and prophets, elders and deacons and every other believer who would draw near. The decision was made by the consensus of all attendees, the most important of whom was the Lord by his holy spirit working in the hearts of all who attended.
The truth is, that the Lord is present at and leads all Jesus gatherings by his holy spirit. From the two or three’s, through local churches, to church wide councils, each disciple drawing upon their personal relationship with the Lord, each with express the “mind of Christ”.
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