Two or Three is All it Takes
based on Matthew 18:15-20
by Rev. Randy Quinn
Let me read that
last verse again: “Where two or three are gathered in my name, I am
there among them” (Matt. 18:20).
That sentiment is
consistent with what Matthew has presented about Jesus throughout the
Gospel. In the very first chapter, for example, Jesus is named
Immanuel, God with us (Matt. 1:23). And in the very last verse of the
last chapter we hear Jesus make the promise to be with us always
It’s no surprise
then when we hear an echo of that in the promise that “where two or
three are gathered in my name, I am there among them” (Matt. 18:20).
But what Jesus says
in our text today is more than a promise that he will be with us. It’s
also a variation of a popular Jewish thought circulating from that era
in time – although, like the gospels, it wasn’t put into writing until
a century or so later. Listen to one translation of the Rabbinic
If two sit together
and words of the Law are between them, the Divine Presence rests
In other words,
whenever two people discuss the scriptures, God is there.
In meetings – public
meetings, club meetings, even church meetings – we often make
reference to a quorum. And depending upon the organization, the size
of the quorum varies. One of the most commonly used definitions is
more than half of the members, such as 4 out of 7. (For United
Methodists, a quorum is defined as anyone who is present at a properly
Jews, however, a congregational quorum consisted of ten men – although
more liberal Jews today might say ten people or members of ten
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