Happy Thursday! I am blessed to be a part of a group of bloggers who feel led to share a bit of encouragement each week from the Bible. We recognize that the source of our peace, strength, and security in this life comes from Jesus, and we aim to share that with our readers. Plus, when Thursday comes around, we can all use a little encouragement right? I hope that this posting blesses you and that you find strength and rest in the Lord today. God Bless! <3
This week I’m sharing:
“For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”
~Matthew 18:20 (NKJV)
This is easily one of my favorite verses. No, this verse isn’t saying that we need other believers around us in order for God to be present. (It also doesn’t mean he disappears after the fourth person shows up). It does however paint a picture of the design of fellowship. God not only created us to have fellowship with Himself, but with other believers as well. When we are fellowshipping with other believers in a way that is honoring and glorifying to God, He will be in the center. The NIV translates the verse as “For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” No, I’m not calling out one translation as better than another, but for this specific verse I prefer the NKJV version because it doesn’t just say “there am I with them,” but “I am there in the midst of them.” “Midst” is really just a fancy way of saying “middle.” So what this verse is saying is that God is in the middle of us. It means He’s not only a part of our group, but He is the center. Knowing this, would it change how you view “fellowship?”
This verse is both a comfort and conviction. I can rest in the knowledge that when I am with other believers, God is right there in the middle of us. It can also be a conviction that our time with other believers should also be well spent. I don’t mean to say that every conversation we have has to be about God, but is everything we say pleasing to him? Or are we spending more time gossiping and/or complaining about life?
When you zoom out from just this verse and look at the passage, you see that the verse isn’t only talking about random fellowship, but how important it is to restore fellowship when a brother or sister has wronged you (or visa versa).
15 “Moreover if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother. 16 But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, that ‘by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.’ 17 And if he refuses to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he refuses even to hear the church, let him be to you like a heathen and a tax collector.
18 “Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.
19 “Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”
Restoring relationships with other believers is very important because it not only restores our unity with each other, but our familial relationship with the Lord.
I hope that this passage blesses and encourages you today!
Now, it’s your turn!
What Biblical verse is encouraging you today?
And, check out more Thursday Encouragement from my fellow blogger friends:
Nicole @ Christian Fiction Girl
Trisha @ Joy of Reading
Jacquelyn @ A Heavenly Home
Jessica @ A Baker’s Perspective