The Gathering is birthed out of a study of the early Christian church in the book of Acts. As people encountered and met Jesus and heard the gospel, they received it with great joy. There was a response of excitement that they were followers of Jesus, which resulted in the enthusiastic gathering of believers. The simplicity of these gatherings allowed them to focus on what was essential for their spiritual growth and as they continued to be the church, the Lord added to their numbers.
As I compare the early church in Acts with the expression of the church I see today, there is a huge disparity. The complexities of “putting together a service” and the logistics of “running a church” have caused us to lose sight of what’s important. We have in essence prioritized doing church over being the church. The Gathering seeks to strip everything down to the bare essentials where believers genuinely want to come together just like those of the early church to focus on the simplicity of the gospel, on living in
The early Christian church in Acts 2:42 focused on and devoted themselves to four things every day:
- The Word of God (through the apostles’ teachings);
- Breaking of bread;
- and Prayer.
Underlying all these things was a clear desire to make Jesus known. These things were built into the lifestyle of all the believers of the early church. This is the heartbeat of The Gathering. People of different ethnicities and different generations will gather together on a regular basis in a casual space to share a meal together, to remember and celebrate Jesus together, to worship together organically without sophisticated sound equipment, to look into the Word together, and to live out the gospel together. Just like the early church, The Gathering will be multiplicative and missional.