Related: The Assembly; The Ground of Gathering
What are assembly meetings? There is a difference between the times when believers are gathered together “in assembly” (1 Cor. 11:18) and the times when believers meet together for recreational purposes, casual fellowship, or even a bible study. Assembly meetings are official meetings, where the assembly comes together in a purposeful way. The book of First Corinthians takes up the order of the local assembly, and from ch.11, v.17 to the end of ch.14, behavior in “assembly meetings” is discussed. Reference 1 Cor. 11:17, 18, 20, 33, 34; 14:23, 26, 28, 34, 35. Scriptural assembly meetings are:
- the breaking of bread (1 Cor. 11:18),
- the prophecy meeting (1 Cor. 14:23),
- the prayer meeting (Acts 12:12),
- a meeting for assembly action (1 Cor. 5:4), and perhaps,
- a meeting for the public reading of the scriptures (1 Tim. 4:13).
An illustration of this could be the Unites States Congress. There are certain set times when Congress comes together in an official capacity. They may meet after hours for social events, etc. but no laws can be made. It is only when Congress is “in session” that they can act in their official capacity.