We all know that unity within a church or ministry organization is important, but how do you obtain it? It won’t be found in everyone trying to bend to one another.
Unity is a tricky thing. It is not a compromise between differing opinions but an alignment to one standard. So for unity to happen, there must be agreement on what transcends all the lesser options.
In this passage, the Apostle Paul reveals the focus of the church’s unity – God. With a complete list of seven “one” phrases, we find the rallying point in the center – “one Lord.” If Christ is Lord, we find unity in Him – not trying to compromise our differing opinions about Him.
4 There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope at your calling— 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of all, who is above all and through all and in all.
7 Now grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift.Ephesians 4:4-7
There is one body (gathering us), one Spirit (guiding us), one hope (encouraging us), one Lord (governing us), one faith (saving us), one baptism (identifying us), and one God (fathering us).
The path to unity is not in us bending to each other; it is breaking before him.
God the Father has declared the truth, God the Son has lived it out for us, and God the Spirit animates us to follow after his ways.
One can become so discouraged by the numerous churches, ministries, and denominations that seem increasingly unable to get along with one another for the sake of Christ. Some divisions through the years were necessary due to doctrinal error or sinful acceptance, but others were due to sheer protection of preferences.
With people growing disillusioned with the divided Body of Christ, we are tempted to find common ground among numerous chasms. But if our compromise differs from where Jesus is, we have convened in the wrong place.
There is one Lord to whom we must rally, and it is not our opinions.
God, our Father, is above all and through all and in all (Eph. 4:6). He is the transcendent one. We find our place in him individually (Eph. 4:7). His grace given to each of us creates ways we can use our gifts to maintain the unity found in Him. As each of us uses our skills, we can stay centered around him and help others to do the same.