Meeting together

 

Why do we meet together?

It is not good that the man should be alone. (Genesis 2:18). Have you ever thought of this simply stunning statement by God as a reason why we are to gather together in corporate worship?

Our corporate enjoyment of God is rooted in a great mystery: the Trinity. God is one (Deuteronomy 6:4James 2:19), but he is three in one (Matthew 28:19). Because of this unfathomable truth we can say, in a sense, that it is “not good” that God should be alone. There are ways that God experiences God more fully and joyfully as three in one than if he were some monochromatic deity.

And in his Trinitarian counsel he said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness” (Genesis 1:26). This doesn’t mean that he made each of us little trinities. But it does mean that God designed us, in a way unique to humans, that many would become one. There are ways that we experience God more fully and joyfully as many in one than if just one human existed.

It is “not good” that God should be alone, not only in the Trinitarian sense, but also in the marriage of Christ to his bride. The three-in-one God and the many-in-one church join in one beautiful holy union, as it were, that allows all of us to experience God more fully and joyfully than if any less of us existed.

That’s why we gather as the church. We are not merely “going to church.” We are participating in the greatest mystery and most wonderful wonder that any individual or group of human beings can ever experience: oneness with the body and bride of Christ who together become one with Christ in God.

There is an enjoyment of God, a “[taste] of the heavenly gift” and a “[sharing] in the Holy Spirit,” and a “[tasting] of the goodness of the Word of God and the powers of the age to come” that cannot be experienced apart from the corporate gathering of Jesus’s church (Hebrews 6:4–51 Corinthians 14:26Colossians 3:15–16). And there is a manifestation of Jesus’s presence that only occurs when this happens:

Where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them. (Matthew 18:20)

The Bible does instruct us to worship and pray privately (Matthew 6:6). But that will never be the fullest, deepest, most joyful experience of God for us. That is reserved for Christ’s united body, his bride.

That’s the most profound reason we are not to neglect meeting together (Hebrews 10:25). For when it comes to seeing and savoring Jesus Christ to the fullest, it is not good that man should be alone.

Use the links above to discover more about how we gather together regularly at St Alban’s.