Tuesday, May 15, 2007

UNITY...Just What Does It Take?

Unity can be a really scary word, especially when tossed around in religious circles. In fact, it can be so loaded with preconceived ideas and notions that one would almost be tempted to abandon the use of such a word. However, as Satan has always done and will continue to do, he takes the creation of God and seeks to distort it in all forms and fashions to destroy what God has made and to make it distasteful for those who are supposed to enjoy it. He has certainly done this with music, television and literature. He attempts, with great success, to drive wedges between spouses, between parents and children and between true Christians.

I certainly am not in favor of working with any who have differences of opinions about many things. Paul lists truths that are necessary for unity in Ephesians 4:4-6. If I cannot agree with someone on these non-negotiables, we probably will not be able to work together. But in many cases, it is not that we disagree about the foundations in verses 4-6, it is the fleshing out of those truths where we disagree. Verses 1-3, however, address what it takes for unity, true biblical unity, to take place.

1. Walking worthy of our calling
a. with lowliness
b. meekness
c. longsuffering
d. forbearing one another in love
2. Endeavouring to keep unity in peace

Seems to me that when the question is asked, "Can there be unity?", the bigger question is, "Do I have what it takes to pursue unity?" Striving for unity is costly. No, not at the cost of core beliefs, verses 4-6, but at the cost of my personal ambitions, verse 1-3. If verses 1-3 do not describe the one who says he is seeking peace, the chance of finding it will be slim, if at all possible. There can be no peace in unity when one is trying to step on others to get to the top.

No, I am not an advocate of working with others who are not of like faith. Surely the Scripture answers this as well. Amos 3:3 Can two walk together, except they be agreed? But when it comes to working with those who are of like faith, it seems to me that unity comes when "I" have truly reigned in my own attitudes and actions. That is right, I am saying unity comes when "I" am right with God. What does unity take? People willing to humble themselves before God.

Have a blessed day...
Luke

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