Following in Unity
Read: 1 Corinthians 1:12-13
In these verses, we read about members of the church proclaiming to follow different men. Paul makes the point that there should be no division among those who follow Christ.
Before we dismiss these verses and take to confidence that we already abide by Paul’s point, think hard about the root of the message being conveyed, and not just Paul’s remarks on the surface. If we are baptized into Christ who was crucified one time for all who believe in Him, why do we have such distinct notions of division between those in the world who proclaim to believe in Jesus?
Whether it’s in regards to a specific denomination or one person that is part of the same church, we are often all too eager to establish how we are different as believers. The words “liberal” and “conservative” tend to be used a lot in our culture, backed by sincere passion. Theology oftentimes turns from a sincere pursuit of understanding God to supporting preexisting personal ideas, which nurses pride and ignorance. And sometimes it’s nothing more than cultural standards that lead us to view other believers as not following Christ appropriately. All of these things encourage us to perceive God’s church as a divided, ailing body.
If we consider the Biblical relationship of the church being Christ’s bride, perhaps we can more clearly see how offensive we come across to God when we adamantly try and segregate other believers from ourselves based on issues that fall under the umbrella of salvation through Christ. How saddened would a husband be if he witnessed his wife trying to cut off her own hand?
Church division is spiritual dismemberment. If we encounter a follower who we believe to be in the wrong, we need to rebuke in love with the heartfelt purpose of restoring the member to righteousness, not issue a personal crusade to rid ourselves of contamination. Christ finds the greatest beauty in His church when it comes together to serve Him, not itself.
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