As I mentioned in a previous post, I make a distinction between “commands” and “principles” based on context. “Commands” are given specifically in the context of believers gathering together, while “principles” are not.
While it’s popular to state that Scripture answers all questions, Scripture itself never makes that claim. In fact, there are a few examples of people discerning what God wants them to do when Scripture does not answer the question.
As we’ve looked through many early writings, we’ve seen various descriptions of early church meetings. Each author had their own reason for writing about church gatherings. What do we make of all of these different descriptions of early church meetings?
Justin places a lot of emphasis on an individual that he refers to as “the president.” He uses a unique term here – one that we do not find in the NT and one that we have not seen in other early church writings.
The Epistle of Barnabas is a very early Christian document. It was probably written sometime between 70 AD and 132 AD and was included in Codex Sinaiticus, one of the earliest complete manuscripts of the New Testament.
The Didache (“Teaching”) was probably written in the late first century or early second century (80-150 AD). While it was referenced very early (Eusebius ~ 324 AD), the actual text of the document was not discovered until 1873.