Reading: “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”—Matthew 18:20
What an encouraging declaration is this of our Lord, to prompt the faithful to meet together on the Lord’s Day; or in short, any day, at all times, and all places. Observe how sweet the Lord speaks: there am I in the midst of my people, not by my word only, not as represented in ordinances, not by the ministry of my servants, but I myself spiritually. The calls, the motions of grace felt in the heart, the tender tokens, the manifestations of my suitableness, fullness, and all-sufficiency—these are all truly mine, which have the influences of my Spirit.
The churches are, indeed, as you have taught, the golden candlesticks; and your ministers are as stars in your right hand. But the candlesticks have no light, until by your presence, you enlighten them. Ministers of God, draw all your comfort and encouragement, amidst all the difficulties you meet with, both from within and without, in your sacred service, from this sweet assurance of Jesus.
Whenever you go up to the assemblies of God’s people, hear the footsteps of your Master behind you. And when you pant after sweet fellowship and communion with Jesus, seek it by the footsteps of the flock, beside the shepherd’s tents, where Jesus feeds his sheep. Who would be absent from that blessed place where Jesus comes to bless? And oh, what encouragement to the faithful to bring with them their unawakened friends and relations to the assemblies which Jesus honours with his presence. Surely He who worked salvation in our hearts, can work the same in theirs.