Gathering of BelieversPrinciples for the Gathering of Believers Under the Headship of Jesus Christ

Chapter One

Principle 1 Solely Looking to the Person of Jesus Christ We need the kind of humility that was expressed in the early Church as recorded in the Book of Acts. This kind of humility is today manifested in many underground and persecuted Churches across the world because they have dealt the death blow to pride and independence.37 These persecuted believers have become solely dependent on Jesus Christ as the Head to lead them and guide their meeting as Churches.38 A brother stated this truth, in another way: “Christ should be the gathering center of His people. We should be drawn by His presence, not by a man. When believers see this and act upon it, the local Assembly need not be shaken by the departure of any man. An Assembly where Christians gather to Christ has strength, stability and solidarity.”39 When we come together to hear a famous speaker40 or elevate one specific teaching,41 this in many ways does not glorify or speak of Jesus Christ as Head of that Assembly. It is a good thing that orally in every meeting and through song Jesus Christ is honored, glorified and proclaimed Head of the Church. This constant referring to His person will ensure that this burden is kept in the forefront of every fellowship of believers.42 “The sign of a New Covenant Church is that people meet with Jesus every single time we gather in His name.”43 When we come together for fellowship we are prone to bring many preconceived notions of how a meeting should operate. We tend to rate our experience based on how good the worship made us feel, or how affected we were by a particular sermon—all too easily forgetting that it isn’t about us at all. It is about Him. If we come to meet with the living God and to experience Him rather than looking to men, we would be much more edified and that would result in our glorifying Him even more. The famous pastor in Scotland known as the prophet of Dundee44 once wrote: “For every time you look to men, look ten times to Christ.” This constant looking back to Christ will keep us from judging others,45 and will allow us not to be discouraged even when we see problems with others46 in the body. In chapter ten of Mark’s Gospel we find Jesus Himself teaching the early Church leaders how to lead a group of believers: “Jesus called them together and said, ‘You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.’”47 Sadly, some Pastors and church leaders today lord over their congregations.48 They exercise human power, control and pride.49 The Lord taught His disciples and He reminds His Church today: If you lead a house Church of believers, act in humility, be a servant and even a slave. In another text Jesus said: “Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves.”50 In Jewish society this was a radical statement. The older had the right to the best seat. The older would speak while the younger had to listen. The Lord Jesus was telling the future leaders in the body of Christ: Act in humility, listen often and serve others.51 We need shepherds who desire that the Lord Jesus Christ have the preeminence and not themselves.52 The challenge comes to us from the Lord: “How long will you waver between two opinions?”53 We must seek to have our Assembly meetings like the New Testament and not like popular modern churches. Jesus Christ is the Alpha, He is the first of everything.54 Therefore He should be the first in our fellowships. His Name should be honored first, His death and resurrection proclaimed,55 and His person praised.56 For it is His Gospel, His Church, His Glory, His Scriptures and His Kingdom that we proclaim. He spoke the world into being.57 He rules God’s creation.58 It is His Spirit that He gives us.59 For He is the only Son of God.60 “For from Him and through Him and for Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever! Amen.”

 

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