Like me, you’ve probably heard or shared that verse a few times (especially in the context of going to church).
It’s from Matthew 18.
Except that’s not what Jesus said.
Check multiple versions of the Bible, and you’ll see these specific words from Christ:
“For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” (NIV)
“For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” (KJV)
“For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.” (ESV)
“And when two or three of you are together because of me, you can be sure that I’ll be there.”(The Message)
Jesus clearly did not say two or more.
What is the significance?
My friend and fellow brother Wendell brought this important detail to my attention the other week as we shared fellowship with brother Rob.
It was just the three of us.
And I remember the conversation.
We normally have about six men who gather together, and it always one of the best hours of my week.
I’m not making the case that a group less than 4 is necessarily better (and for fellowship purposes, I’ll take a group of 6 over a group of say 16 any day of the week).
The purpose for this blog post is simply two fold:
1. To bring this detail to your attention for your thoughts and experience.
2. To remind all seekers that you don’t need to be in the presence of 400 churchgoers on a Sunday morning to share in the body of Christ.
There’s Something Special About Three
Authors C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and Charles Williams were famously connected to the literary discussion group The Inklings in Oxford, England.
When Charles Williams passed away in 1945, C.S. Lewis remarked:
“In each of my friends there is something that only some other friend can fully bring out. By myself I am not large enough to call the whole man into activity; I want other lights than my own to show all his facets. Now that Charles is dead, I shall never again see Ronald’s [Tolkien’s] reaction to a specifically Charles joke. Far from having more of Ronald, having him “to myself” now that Charles is away, I have less of Ronald.”
Stated simply, C.S. Lewis experienced less of his friend Tolkien because Williams was no longer present.
“For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” (Matthew 18:20)
What are your thoughts on what Jesus said?
What has been your experience in fellowship with just two or three?
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