Hey all. Sorry for the delay in posts. I’ve decided that Justin’s Apology is going to be a project I’ll work on as I have time, but not something I’ll clog up this website with. I’m afraid its put off my fellow bloggers from posting…and I hate to see that happen.
I want to leave off Justin’s Apology with just one more chapter….the most compelling chapter of all to me. It was the piece of Justin’s apology that I read in a library 15 years ago, which changed my view of church forever. It is Justin’s description of a typical gathering of the church…its the oldest snapshot we have of how the early church carried out it’s meetings….and I LOVE it. I relish this chapter…chapter 67….it woke me up, gave me hope and is literally the basis for Eastgate, the church I’m now a part of. Read what he says the meeting of the church was like, 1900 some years ago…and revel in the simplicity and kindness of that original “wonderwhat”.
I give you chapter 67 of Justin’s first apology:
Chapter LXVII.-Weekly Worship of the Christians.
It’s our habit to regularly remind each other of the things we believe. Those who have the means to do it take care of the needs of those who are poor among us. We stick with each other through thick and thin, and we thank God for supplying for all our needs. He made everything and gives us everything we need in His Son Jesus Christ, and through the Holy Spirit.
On the day called Sunday, whether we live in the city or live in the country, we all meet together in one place, and we read the stories of the apostles or the writings of the prophets for a set amount of time. Then, when the person reading has stopped, the leader of our group will teach us how we can live these writings out in real life.
After that, we pray. We stand together praying, and when we’re done we bring out the bread and wine we mentioned before (chapter 66) and the leader prays over them, thanking God for these things to the best of his ability and we all agree with him by saying “amen”. We make sure everyone gets some of the bread and wine and we all eat and drink the things we are so thankful for. We also make sure those who can’t join us are sent a portion, we send a designated waiter on a house call to serve the absentees.
Those who have the means and are willing to do so give to a common fund whatever they see fit to give. That sum is given to the leadership who then takes care of orphans and widows, those who are sick and unable to work, those who have been put in prison and their families, and any stranger who comes our way. In a word, he is the protector of all who are in need.
We meet together on Sunday because that was the first day of creation, the day God separated light from darkness and made the world we live on. Jesus Christ our Hero rose from the dead on Sunday as well. He was crucified on the day before Saturn’s day (Saturday), and on the day after Saturn’s day, the day of the sun, He rose from the dead and appeared to his disciples and the apostles.
He is the One who taught them the things that we have been taught to believe, and we have now offered them to you, for your consideration.