EXHORTATION TO UNITY IN THE CHURCH
Believers in Christ are to be practically united in common faith. This comes as they demonstrate the manner of life and love for one another. God makes us one and gives us gifts that we may mature. While calling for the need for unity in the body of Christ, he qualified himself as a prisoner of Jesus Christ. He wanted to put across the message that it was worthy to go to prison for Christ’s sake.
The call to Christians to walk worthy of the calling wherewith they are called has wide implications for a Christian. In another reference, Paul told believers that their character must be fitting of the gospel of Christ. Christians must have an external testimony that speaks for them. Everything that is included in the calling ought to be seen in one’s life daily. When Peter spoke on the day of Pentecost in Acts 2:37-40, he called for repentance and baptism in the name of Jesus Christ. Those were acts of public confession for everyone who had accepted Christ as Lord and Saviour. That profession is a lifelong commitment and nothing must deter it.
Paul preached in like manner at Ephesus and he expected new believers to show the same commitment in forsaking their sins and embracing Christ. In all his writing he did not fail to mention specific sins by name and warned that these must be avoided. On many occasions he admonished his audience to the effect that they lacked common sense. They had to make the gospel of Christ their yardstick.
The Apostle also advocated humility and the forbearance of one another in love as a means of keeping the unity of the body of Christ. He said that in doing this they were endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. The desire of the Apostle needs to be seen in our church today.
THOUGHT: Unity is not ecumenism, but genuine obedience of faith.
PRAYER: Lord, may I strive to keep the unity of the faith.