Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not have all the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.
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. There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope when you were called—one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.
As we saw on Monday, Jesus prayed that we might be one. The Spirit of Christ has baptized us into one body. Now we are to keep the unity that the Spirit has made. We cannot make that unity through human effort and will. Only the Spirit can create this kind of unity, but we are to maintain it. All true believers belong to one body, and we need to realize we are one in Christ.
In Ephesians four, Paul gives us a list of seven things that unite us: one body, one Spirit, one hope, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father of all. Biblical unity begins when we recognize that God is sovereign over all creation. There is only one authority, and we are all subject to His authority. There is only one body. There are many expressions of this one body that are called churches. But at the end of the day, there is only one church. Biblical unity is possible when a body of believers surrenders to the lordship of Christ. There can be only one leader in the church and that is Christ. For there to be unity, every part of the body must surrender to Christ who is the head of the body.
Unity is possible when a body of believers is committed to love and submission to Christ. We see this in Jesus’ earthly example in the Garden of Gethsemane. At the end of His earthly life, Jesus surrendered Himself to the rule and authority of the Father, “may your will be done.” Because of Jesus submission to the Father, we have been reconciled to God through His death on the cross. A way has now been made for us to become part of God’s eternal family. Unity is not everybody getting along. Instead, it is everybody recognizing Christ’s authority over the church and submitting themselves to His authority.
Questions to Ponder
Are you making every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace? Do you daily surrender your will and your ways to God? Why do we struggle to submit?
Spend some time in prayer meditating on what God revealed to you today.