Unity

Jesus was about

breaking down walls

 

His desire was

and is

 

Unity

 

One heart

one purpose

 

All is grace

 

And who do we think we are

when we coddle a grudge

 

stacking up those walls

that Christ intended to topple?

 

And who do we think we are

when we lash out with words bitter

 

cutting people with gossip

and abusing verbally?

 

And who do we think we are

thinking our reason is valid

 

for destroying unity

in the mighty name of self?

 

Christ’s desires and intentions for us

must be first in our minds

 

and the more we know Him

the more we will know

 

His beating heart

for unity

 

– Susie Stewart

 

The Measure of harmony you have with every believer will depend on your experience of Christ’s life as your own.

– BSF

 

Don’t hit back; discover beauty in everyone. If you’ve got it in you, get along with everybody. Don’t insist on getting even; that’s not for you to do. “I’ll do the judging,” says God. “I’ll take care of it.”

– Romans 12:17-19 (MSG)

 

I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.

– Ephesians 4:1,2 (NIV)

 

The apostle tells us to be eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit….Some Christian fellowships are marred by rivalries between individuals or groups which have been allowed to fester for years.  How can we possibly condone such things?  We need to be “eager” for love, unity and peace, and more active in seeking it.

– John Stott

 

There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were all called to pursue one hope. There is one Lord Jesus, one living faith, one ceremonial washing through baptism, and one God—the Father over all who is above all, through all, and in all. This God has given to each of us grace in full measure according to the Anointed’s gift

– Ephesians 4:4-7 (VOICE)

 

If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.

– Romans 12:18 (NIV)

 

But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.

– Matthew 6:15 (NIV)

 

Photo by Susie Stewart

 

 

Together

I think we don’t take God seriously

about unity in the Body of Christ

 

We divide ourselves into denominations

and separate from one another

 

We look down on this group

or that one over there

 

And we quarrel with our brothers and sisters

not taking seriously that God is about forgiveness

 

and about reconciliation

and unconditional love

 

We take advantage of His grace

and feel justified in our bitterness

 

Because if you only knew what they did….

 

When all along it has been us, too,

holding onto judgment

and bitterness

and unforgiveness

 

How ironic

 

For in our minds

we are pointing out their sin

 

And we could all be put in a basket

a basket of people stained and broken

 

BUT that is not how God sees us!

 

His precious Son died so that we

could be reconciled to the Father

 

He bought us reconciliation!

 

Do you hear that word?

Reconciliation

 

And that is what we ought to be about

with one another

 

Reconciliation

 

After all, do you not know

that together we build

 

The Holy Temple of God?

 

Each one a brick

adding to the beautiful structure

 

Jesus, the Son of God,

is the Cornerstone of that temple!

 

It is important that we be together

Each having a place

 

Brick by brick

by brick

 

So, please, brothers and sisters

let’s not judge

and criticize

and hate

and draw denominational lines

 

God has called us to love

so that others outside the building

 

Will know of our Savior

 

What barrier have you erected

that the cross already demolished?

 

– Susie Stewart

 

People are incorporated into [Jesus Christ], and when He is raised to new life, a new being comes into existence, one in which people are one with Christ and one with each other in Him.  Grace not only connects us to God and Christ, it connects us to each other.

– Klyne Snodgrass

 

Jesus prayed:   “I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in Me through their message. I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in Me, Father, and I am in You. And may they be in us so that the world will believe you sent Me.”

– John 17:20-21 (NLT)

 

Together, we are his house, built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets. And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus Himself. We are carefully joined together in Him, becoming a holy temple for the Lord. Through Him you Gentiles are also being made part of this dwelling where God lives by His Spirit.

– Ephesians 2:20-22 (NLT)

 

God’s purpose and Christ’s achievement is a single new humanity, a model of human community, a family of reconciled brothers and sisters who love their Father and love each other, the evident dwelling place of God by His Spirit.  Only then will the world believe in Christ as Peacemaker.  Only then will God receive the glory due His name.  

– John Stott

 

And you are living stones that God is building into His spiritual temple. What’s more, you are His holy priests. Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God. As the Scriptures say,

“I am placing a cornerstone in Jerusalem,
chosen for great honor,
and anyone who trusts in Him
will never be disgraced.”
Yes, you who trust Him recognize the honor God has given Him. But for those who reject Him,

“The stone that the builders rejected
has now become the cornerstone.”

And,

“He is the stone that makes people stumble,
the rock that makes them fall.”
They stumble because they do not obey God’s word, and so they meet the fate that was planned for them.

But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for He called you out of the darkness into His wonderful light.

“Once you had no identity as a people;
now you are God’s people.
Once you received no mercy;
now you have received God’s mercy.”

– 1 Peter 2:4-10 (NLT)

 

Photo by Susie Stewart