Christians in Unity
There is a sense that Christians should strive to function properly together. In other words we should work harder in order to maintaining unity. 1Cor.12:12 says, “ For as the body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is Christ.’
There is a reason why Paul appealed at the beginning of his Epistle by saying, 1Cor.1:10, “ Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.” In other words Christians should strive harder at maintaining unity in the body of Christ. Paul wrote a similar idea in Eph 4:3 “Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.”
When a baby is born, normally all the body parts are present. They are all there, otherwise parents would begin to worry. You become part of the human family. You grow gradually and it takes time. The same with the body of Christ. When we were born again we were placed (baptised) into the body of Christ. We are part of that body, called the church, once you become a Christian. You are birthed into God’s family. We have to grow spiritually. The unity is present, you are spiritually connected to the Head (Christ) and to the body (the church). Do not pray that you would be united or connected. You are already united in the body. You are not divided from the body. But incorporated in that body by the Spirit. No one can take you away from that body. You are there connected whether you like it or not you are in the body. 1Cor 12:13 says, “For by one Spirit we were all baptised into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and have all been made to drink into one Spirit. The Holy Spirit connected us together. Jesus baptised us by the Spirit.
What do we maintain? Keep the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace. We have to maintain it peacefully. We need to pray constantly for peace. Do not pray for unity. We are already united. All we need to pray, is a ‘peaceful unity’. This may sound controversial for some. But I am talking to those who are real born again by the Spirit of God, not to a system or organised religion. Regardless of denomination or different persuasions, if you are born again you are united in the body of Christ. This applies specially to the local body of believers. The issue is not unity. The issue is ‘peaceful’ or proper unity. A certain wife was saying to her husband: “the issue is not that you don’t love me.” The main issue is “you don’t love me properly, you always hurt my feelings by the unkind words you say.”
We are united in the body, Christ is the Head, and the body must be kept healthy by maintaining it peacefully. The means to have a peaceful unity is to focus on Christ, rather than focus on ‘who we are.’ It is only by the grace of God, ‘you are what you are.’ Salvation is by grace through faith alone. Our present position in Christ, and what we have achieved in life is because of His grace. All by grace and grace alone.