Return To Front Page............................
Return To Church Truth.........................
See Conditions & Comments................
DO THE READERS KNOW of those believers in Christ holding that recovery of church truth in AD 1827--- endeavoring to continue the expression of the "one body in Christ" worldwide in the scriptural order, as intend -
ed by God for "unity of the faith"----rather than independency, mergers, and sectar-ianism? Does one want to know? Such a fellowship does exist today. SEE THE SITE
MANAGER for a brief history.
Some thoughts here especially for the faithful saints who value Bible-only , who earnestly desire to be faithful to our Lord and His Word (Mt.18:20; Acts 20:27). See also other pages listed below for some thoughts. Write to the Site Manager if one has questions or comments.
- Bible Counsel: Feature Page 13
NOTE: For the faithful gathered saints already in a scriptural assembly who would like to review related papers on our path, they may write for copies of papers. Contact Site Manager with any questions.
CHRIST IS THE CENTER
If the "Kingdom of Heaven" is like an OUTER CIRCLE of profession and honor to God and His ways, as we understand, and the "Kingdom of God" is like an INNER CIRCLE of posses-sion of Christ and the "new birth", then we might well look for a CENTER CIRCLE with-in of believers gathered around Christ and His Word for obedience and submission.
This page speaks to those who value the fol-lowing G.R.E.A.T.W.A.Y: Gathering with other saints to the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ alone in love; Receiving "all the counsel of God" and "rightly dividing the Word of Truth"; Expressing the "one body" of Christ in the world; Acknowledging the "priesthood" of all believers; Trusting the Lord and keeping His Word; Worshipping in devotion as pleases God; Appreciating God's assembly, order, and government; Yielding to the leading of the Holy Spirit.
In anticipation of those who might have some objections, one ought to say: no one should presume to boast of being in a center circle; nevertheless, it remains and that should be the object and desire of faithful saints.
4. A basic appreciation of the truth of the unity of "one body in Christ" worldwide is important, and the scriptural expression of that locally and elsewhere ---like Acts 2:41-42 and the Bible Epistles. All the saints here should not be expected to know all the Holy Scripture ---just not oppose it; and also appreciate that as we will be one people in heaven in holiness, so should we be now.
5. There ought to be basic understanding of what the universal (worldwide) fellowship should hold as essential truth for all as the spiritual "body in Christ” (Rom.12; 1 Cor.12; Eph.4 -–KJV), though one may not be knowledgeable of all Scripture.
6. Seeing the need to be of "one mind", "one accord", "together", "no schism", etc. as God's Word tells us, is essential; which speaks also of honoring other assemblies in the same fellowship, accepting their judgments if true to the Word and not holding evil; and receiving visitors from them and by a recognized letter of commendation if not otherwise known, as was also done in the beginning of the Church as the Epistles of God show (note example: Rom. 16:1; 1 Cor. 16:20; 2 Cor. 1:1; 2 Cor. 3:1; Phil. 4:21-22.
7. Following the scriptural form of gathering, function, order and government, and not allowing religious ideas and innovations of men is important. Meetings for the gathered saints should be as shown in Acts 2 and the Epistles ---Collective Prayer meetings are important; Bible Study, with perhaps children meetings aside to meet their needs, while adults are studying should be set; and the "Lord's Supper" at the "Lord's Table" for the known gathered saints on "first day of the week" (Acts 20:7; Luke 22:19; 1 Cor. 10:16; 1 Cor. 11:24; 1 Cor. 16:2; etc.). Gospel Preaching meetings for inviting the public in to hear of salvation is important. Maybe also special meetings at certain times can be held for addresses by esteemed fulltime traveling servants, commended among the fellowship in the world, might be held for help and encouragement; etc. Ministry of God's Word in various ways will profit all.
8. Seeking always to uphold the holiness of God and His honor and glory personally and in the fellowship should always be our desire. Offerings of Tithes in the Old Testament was told to be a tenth of one's income, but today it is not designated ---though should be no less if possible and liberty is allowed. God knows our circumstances, and having "a right spirit" is needed (Psa. 51:10) in all that we do.
9. Essential church truth must be maintained and the Word preached and taught, rather than religious ideas ---though we should allow conscience on non-essential subjects if not pressed on others; and one should always seek the good and unity of all. Elders within who are grounded in the faith must see that all is done as "all the counsel of God" (Acts 20:27); and be "rightly dividing the Word of Truth" (2 Tim. 2:15). Other such assemblies can be supportive in understandings.
10. The Lord's table is spread in a new place with approval and support of assemblies and elders elsewhere among us for guidance; and local believers might first meet together with other Christians in their home in prayer, study, and songs of praise until a scriptural assembly can be established --- and until then embraced for remembrance meetings (breaking of bread) and full unity with gathered saints elsewhere. There is no thought in Scripture of independant gatherings in various cities, for the Bible shows in the Epistles all were of "one mind and one accord", and valued the ministry of the Apostles ---though we see there was some failure at times, which needed to be corrected.
11. Showing the love of God to all, and seeking the good of every saint of God everywhere to go on well in the faith, should be our desire; though one should see the difference and not follow or embrace some contrary independent path (note Amos 3:3; Phil. 2:1-2; 1 Jn. 1:3). This certainly is not speaking against a family meeting in home with no other Christians gathered around them; and Bible studies at home is good.
12. Receiving other believers into the universal fellowship worldwide and at the Lord's table in the same manner; and not associating with any evil or the various sects and religious associations, meeting on other ground should be expected (considering such as the Epistles at 2 Cor. 10:12; 2 Jn. 08-11; etc.).
In summary we surely should not expect perfection in any of us, but hold to the perfect mind of God for His testimony, purposes, and Will among us. We need to be faithful servants together here on earth.
Let us emphasize these important things for the good of all, and to distinguish between essential and non-essential things. New assemblies should have close relationships with Elders and such helpers in other established assemblies, which can feel a responsibility to encourage and care for the new gathering and help the dear ones there go on well, as the Lord leads. One should read the Epistles to appreciate God's mind for the fellowship; and consider such as 2 Timothy, chapters 2, 3, 4 to see the sad condition that developed among God's people in the course of time, which condition we must also judge if it arises today. God's testimony is not about pleasing the flesh, but serving the Lord, keeping His Word, and helping His people in "unity of the faith" until our Lord comes for His "bride". All these saints can meet together at Bible Conferences at times to share and enjoy fellowship. - RLD: CF13; 2008; add: 12/2020.
Constitution Of Christian Assembly
Thoughts Also About Christian Gatherings Becoming Scriptural Assemblies
By Robert DeWitt
When we speak here of Christian assembly it is making distinction about the essential difference between those Christians who gather and those who "...are gathered" by the Spirit of God scripturally, as in Matthew 18:20; and that which is a faithful local testimony and expression of the universal church in the world (though individual believers therein may not be found perfect). There is NO true scriptural testimony as a church of 'CHOICE', as some Christians practice. Actually, the word translated as CHURCH (from 'kuriakos') ---"pertaining to God", and originally just called "kirk" for short, and later as "church") seems to be the translators' choice from the Greek word: "ecclesia", which means Assembly. It is presumed the translators made the change to Church to avoid confusion with a Civil Assembly. Thus we can understand it as that 'universal assembly of believers pertaining to God', as a fellowship in a local place representing the worldwide testimony there.
A question was raised by an interested believer as to how a group of Christians, not near to an established and godly Bible-only gathering, might become a scriptural assembly. That is a good question and there are some fundamentals, but also it depends on circumstances somewhat which might be different in one town from another; and certainly the work must be of God in "unity of the faith" as God states. Some of us would say a gathering of "born again" believers in a remote place could become a recognized scriptural assembly along these lines here stated for 'unity'--- which is probably not a complete list, but are some basic considerations. More thorough information is available in other sources from the publishing house: Bibletruthpublishers.com and at the biblecounsel.net web site.
1. True believers by faith in Jesus --the "Christ of God" (as Luke 9:20) found together in a place reading the Bible, who each desire to be associated and part of God's universal church testimony in the world, ought to seek unity (note 1 Cor. 12:25) ---for reception to the fellowship is NOT mergers as a group, but by individual conviction, and also recognizing the revival as a work by God and not of men. This testimony is intended to be of "one accord" in the truth from the beginning as in Acts 2 and Epistles, and functions now worldwide since that revival of church truth in AD 1827 in Ireland, then England, which has spread worldwide.
2. It is helpful for believers to see and appreciate something of church truth and church history to understand how the recovery of God's purposes was set forth in the early 1800's out of the sectarian spirit that existed in the world ---which descended from the bondage of the R.C. religion of circa 500- 1500 AD, and then into Denominationalism with many of those rituals and innovations. One may not know the history, but should NOT then act contrary to what the assembly must hold, and cause dissention among saints.
3. Each participant or applicant for fellowship, needs to be found as: (A) a true "born again" believer in Christ (John 3:16; John 14; Rom. 8; Gal. 2:20; etc) ---one who is devoted to Him; (B) is baptized according to the Word, clear of evil ---doctrinal or otherwise; and stands apart from the various sectarian church groups and religious ideas, innovations, and doctrines. Any visitor should be welcome to come, learn, and sit back and observe, 'til all can get acquainted and agree; thus having all "of one accord" in "unity of the faith" at the Lord's Table as enjoined by God. (C) We must thus regard this holiness of the Table and Supper which has been going on over 190 years now. On might well seek this out, as shown in the addresses herein. (D) A true "born again" saint should see they are viewed by God as a "holy and royal priesthood" (noting 1 Peter 2: 5 & 9), and need not a man-made 'preacher' or 'priest' to participate in ministry. (E) study of Scripture will show forth further truths to guide us.