Suggestions to Saints

Who meet simply in the name of the Lord Jesus for the Breaking of Bread on the First Day of the Week

    1. Make it a special point, if in your power, always to be in the place of meeting in due time; better be a few minutes before the time, and spend them in secret prayer, praise, or meditation. Coming in late tends to distract the minds of those gathered. Remember, "When the hour was come He sat down" (Luke 22:14; 1 Cor. 14:40).

    2. Be occupied with "Jesus only," as He who died and rose again; who ascended, and who is coming again. Do not talk to each other, unless it be really needful, nor turn over the leaves of your Bible or Hymn-book except when necessary. "This do in remembrance of Me" (1 Cor. 11:24).

    3. Remember that EACH one gathered at the Table either helps or hinders in blessing, therefore the need that EACH saint there be in realized fellowship with God. "But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread and drink of that cup" (1 Cor. 11:28).

    4. Remember that the Holy Spirit is present to guide in the worship and ministry. Let the brethren see, when leading in worship and ministry, that they are in the Spirit; for only as worship and ministry are in the Spirit can it be pleasing to God, and profitable to those gathered. "The Father seeketh such to worship Him....They that worship Him must worship Him in Spirit and in truth" (John 4:23,24).

    5. Remember that we are all in the same position as worshipers: blood-bought sinners saved by the sovereign grace of God (Eph 2:4,5); but not so with regard to ministry; some are special gifts given by Christ, the living Head, for the edifying of the Body (Eph. 4:11-16); but there is also a general ministry, in which all members of the Body have their place (1 Cor. 14:29-34).

    6. Any brother leading in worship or ministry, should read and speak so distinctly that all present can hear well, and give due time to those gathered to find the hymn, or portion to be read, before beginning. "Let all things be done unto edifying" (1 Cor. 14:26). Edifying is to be the object. "Except ye utter by the tongue words easy to be understood, how shall it be known what is spoken?" (1 Cor. 14:9).

    7. When you miss any from the meeting, visit them if you can, and learn the reason; if in trouble, help them if possible. "The members should have the same care one for another" (1 Cor. 12:25). "Bear ye one another’s burdens" (Gal. 6:2).

    8. Take heed not to condemn or hinder a weak or young brother in the exercise of any gift, however small; try rather to encourage and help him; but do not show love at the expense of truth. Both are to be exercised together; and each member in the Body has its own special place. "Why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at naught thy brother?" (Rom. 14:10).

    9. When gathered at the Lord’s Table, remember that the special object in gathering thus is to "show the Lord’s death till He come" (1 Cor. 11:26). Just in proportion as this is kept in mind, will the praise, teaching or exhortation be profitable; therefore the breaking of bread ought not to be kept in the background, as it sometimes is. Though there is no special time appointed for the dividing of the bread and wine, yet we have the example of the Lord Himself, for He gave it a prominent place, as the special teaching in John, chapters 13,14,15 and 16 appears to be after the breaking of bread. "The disciples came together to break bread" (Acts 20:7; Acts 2:42).

    10. Be considerate and courteous to strangers who come amongst you. Bear and forbear one with another. Love each saint for Jesus’ sake. If the flesh be manifested in any one, pray for that one, speak kindly to such, and remember the flesh is also in you. "Let brotherly love CONTINUE." "Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love" (Heb. 13:1; Rom. 12:10).

    11. Do not be wounded if others do not show love to you; let this rather lead you to show love to them. Manifesting thus the mind of Jesus, you will enjoy His love, and draw out their love. "Overcome evil with good" (Rom. 12:21).

    12. If any one offend you, be sure to take the Scriptural way of dealing with that one; speak to that one personally first, go in the spirit of prayer and forgiveness; pray together over the point first, if possible. "Go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone " (Matt. 18:15).

    13. If you find your interest in gospel work abating, be sure that something is wrong; go to God at once about it in prayer and supplication. "Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world" (2 Tim. 4:10).

    14. Remember that each saint has an individual responsibility to God, and that "we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ" (Rom. 14:10; 2 Cor. 5:10).

    15. Keep the coming of the Lord Jesus continually upon your hearts. "Looking for that blessed hope" (Titus 2:13; 1 Thess. 4:16-18).

    16. Let none be brought into fellowship except with the full approval of all gathered; and if any has not full confidence in the one proposed, mention it at the time, or to those who have the rule, and who watch for souls.

    17. In giving for the poor saints or the Lord’s work, give cheerfully, as the Lord hath prospered you. If you have little, the Lord only expects little; if much, the Lord expects much. Beware of "covetousness, which is idolatry" (Col. 3:5).

    18. As stewards, each has his individual responsibility to God. There is also a responsibility at gatherings. Remember those in whom you have confidence as sent of God to preach His gospel, not only when laboring beside you, but also when they are laboring in the "regions beyond." "Ye sent once and again unto my necessity" (Phil. 4:16).

    19. Do not be ashamed or backward to take your stand beside the Lord’s servants who preach the Word in the open air. "Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord" (2 Tim. 1:8).

    20. In speaking to anxious souls, point them to the word of God. "They spake unto him the word of the Lord" (Acts 16:32).

W. G. S.