For where two or three are gathered together
This seems to be said in opposition to a Jewish notion, that a number less than ten, is not a congregation F1; whereas, though the number is ever so few that are met together to pray to God; or to hear his word, attend on his ordinances, or do the business of his house, or transact any affair that is for the glory of God, and the good of souls, in my name, says Christ; that is, by his authority, depending on his assistance, calling upon his name, and making use of it, and seeking the glory of it:
there am I in the midst of them;
presiding over them, ruling in their hearts, directing their counsels, assisting them in all they are concerned, confirming what they do, and giving a blessing and success to all they are engaged in. The Jews, though they say there is no congregation less than ten, yet own that the divine presence may be with a lesser number, even as small an one as here mentioned F2.
``Ten that sit and study in the law, the Shechaniah dwells among them, as it is said, ( Psalms 82:1 ) . From whence does this appear, if but five? from ( Amos 9:6 ) , from whence, if but three? from ( Psalms 82:1 ) , from whence, if but two? from ( Malachi 3:16 ) , from whence, if but one? from ( Exodus 20:24 ) .''
And again F3,
``two that sit together, and the words of the law are between them, the Shechaniah dwells among them, according to ( Malachi 3:16 ) , from whence does it appear, that if but one sits and studies in the law, the holy blessed God hath fixed a reward for him? from ( Lamentations 3:28 ) .''
F1 Misn. Sanhedrim, c. 1. sect. 6. T. Bab. Megilia, fol. 23. 2. Gloss. in ib.
F2 Pirke Abot, c. 3. sect. 6.
F3 Ib. sect. 2.