Spiritual Unity

Mark Twain used to say he put a dog and a cat in a cage together as an experiment, to see if they could get along. They did, so he put in a bird, pig and goat. They, too, got along fine after a few adjustments. Then he put in a Baptist, Presbyterian, and Methodist; soon there … More

Unity

The first three chapters of Ephesians deal with doctrine while the last three chapters explain our responsibilities as Christians. The word “therefore” shows that Paul is basing what he now has to say on the doctrines he has taught in the first three chapters (v. 1). The better we understand Bible doctrine the easier it will be to obey Bible duties.

The key thought in these verses is the unity of the believers in Christ. Unity does not mean uniformity. Unity comes from within while uniformity is the result of pressure from without. Unity does not just happen; we have to work at it. If we are going to have unity we must exhibit humility, meekness and longsuffering (v. 2). We need to try our best to let God’s Spirit keep our hearts united (v. 3). We do this by living at peace with each other.

Many people today attempt to unite Christians in a way that is not Biblical. Paul names seven basic elements of unity (vv. 4-6):

  1. One Body - What each believer is placed into
  2. One Spirit - The Holy Spirit
  3. One Hope - The rapture.
  4. One Lord - Jesus Christ
  5. One Faith - Basic Bible doctrine
  6. One Baptism - Happens at conversion
  7. One God and Father - Creator and sustainer
Purity of doctrine doesn’t necessarily produce spiritual unity. You can be sound in doctrine but unsaved in practice. Our behavior in Christ is to match our profession of Christ. To “walk worthy” means that we are to live in a way that honors and pleases God; we were “created in Christ to do good works” (Eph. 2:10).

Application

It has be said there are two ways of being united. One is by being frozen together, and the other is by being melted together. It is my desire to be united in brotherly love with other Christians, and then I can expect to have God’s power in my life.

Ephesians 4:1-6 (English Standard Version)


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