Unity. It must have been a subject very near to Jesus’ heart, for it was the primary focus of His great pastoral prayer, the prayer He gave just before going to the cross, as recorded in John 17.
Today’s devotional will be a bit different. As an introduction to this topic that God has placed so heavily upon my heart, I am simply asking you to prayerfully read the following Bible texts every day for an entire week.
Now some of you may choose to ignore this; but if you truly want what Jesus wants for the church, you will take your time and meditate upon them, asking yourselves just one question: What would Jesus do in our day and age? Some of you may even consider a type of fast, but whatever your means of seeking God’s will, I encourage you to seek what God would have you to do with the following texts:
1. “I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought.” (1 Corinthians 1:10, NIV)
2. “So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.” (Ephesians 4:11-13, NIV)
3. “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.” (Colossians 3:13-14, NIV)
4. “I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.” (John 17:23, NIV)
5. “How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!” (Psalm 133:1, NIV)
6. “Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble.” (1 Peter 3:8, NIV)
7. “Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” (Ephesians 4:3, NIV)
8. “Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.” (Romans 12:16, NIV)
9. “But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have one Teacher, and you are all brothers.” (Matthew 23:8, NIV)
10. “To be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.” (Ephesians 1:10, NIV)
11. “For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility.” (Ephesians 2:14, NIV)
12. “So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:26-28, NIV)
13. “Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.” (1 Corinthians 12:12-13, NIV)
14. “An argument started among the disciples as to which of them would be the greatest.” (Luke 9:46, NIV)
15. “Jesus, knowing their thoughts, took a little child and had him stand beside him. Then he said to them, ‘Whoever welcomes this little child in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. For it is the one who is least among you all who is the greatest.’” (Luke 9:47-48 NIV)
16. “That they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” (John 17:21, ESV)
At the end of the week, I would love to hear from you to see what God has been speaking into your heart on the subject of unity in the church. Please email me your thoughts!
I invite you to join us on as we begin to take a deeper look at unity and what it means to the church.
In His love, |
(To access the entire “Dissonance Amidst Unity” devotional series, please click here.)