Over the years, I’ve been convicted by passages that describe the unity Christ wants in His church (John 17, 1 John 4, 1 Corinthians 12, Philippians 2, Acts 2…). But whenever I’ve made efforts toward bringing believers together, I run into seemingly insurmountable barriers. I don’t know how to overcome the differences in theology, convictions, and personalities. So I gave up long ago.
But once again, His Word is bothering me. This time around, it’s the second half of Ephesians 2 that is convicting me. I confess, I had never taken a real close look at this passage. Until this recent study, I hadn’t noticed the deep connection between the cross and unity. Our oneness is far more than a “nice idea” we should pursue if we can find the time. It was a motivation for the cross.
14 For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility 15 by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, 16 and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility. 17 And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near. 18 For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. 19 So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, 21 in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. 22 In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.
I don’t know how this will play out in my life this time. I don’t have a brilliant master plan to unite His children. I just figured I would start by getting you to stare at His Word again, and by praying that His Spirit would bring unity to His church. I certainly don’t have the answer, but I care again and more than I ever have. Our Father wants His children tightly connected, and our Savior died to make it possible. Shouldn’t we be working and praying harder about this?