For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. Matthew 18:20 – KJV
This is a pretty straightforward verse, right? I mean, it is one of “those verses” that churches around the world, mine included, use to show the importance of coming together every Sunday morning. Here’s another:
How should one chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight, unless their Rock had sold them, and the Lord had shut them up? – Deuteronomy 32:30
We’ve been taught that one’s prayer puts 1,000 angels to flight but the prayer of two puts 10,000 to flight, and so on…
I was really excited to put these two verses together and teach about the awesomeness of gathering together with your spouse and praying angels over your house, but that’s not really what these verses mean. These verses aren’t about church or prayer at all. They are about resolving conflict and fighting wars. So, just as I was about to scrap my idea, God spoke to me and showed me why these two verses are so important for us to remember.
In Matthew 18:20, Jesus is talking about two or three gathering to resolve conflict between two people. Right before this verse, He is telling His disciples to confront the one who has aggrieved you, and if he will not listen, to bring to or three people, gathered in His name, to mete out the truth. You and your spouse are at odds, and each of you has a side of the story to tell; but who are you telling it to? And who is giving you advice?
When my husband and I were separated, my friends completely turned their backs on him. They said horrible things about him, because that’s what they thought I wanted to hear. They thought I needed their agreement, but I didn’t. I needed truth. I needed someone to tell me lovingly where I had gone wrong, what I could do to fix myself, and how to keep hope alive. My husband needed that also, because he had surrounded himself with a group of friends that constantly reminded him how much better off he was without his family, regardless of whether it was true or not.
I challenge you today to take a good look at those who are aware of your situation. Are they fighting for you, or are they fighting for the truth? Whose advice are you taking? Is it Godly? Are they willing to tell you when you’re wrong as quickly as they would when you’re right?