Not Rending the Body of Christ
Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. - Ephesians 4:3
It is only by charity and self-less love that we will be able to preserve the unity of the body of Christ. The Apostle Paul writing from prison shares that believers must make "every effort" to maintain unity. This is not something that will automatically happen, our normal flow of Church-life will result in divisions, disunity as we are prone to follow the flesh and our own individual desires. We must make disciplined effort to seek peace and unity constantly with our brothers and sisters in the Lord. Our Lord's heart is hurt when there is disunity, hurt and pain caused by people taking their own will and way. Our Lord gave us the pattern to follow that He said not my own will but God's will be done. He followed his Father in Heaven in all things and was able to walk in unity with brethren who failed him and others constantly. If someone where to shun a believer Jesus had all the opportunities having 12 disciples who constantly failed and doubted.
The early Church Father Cyprian says, “Because the coat was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom, they said, ‘Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it. (John 21:23-24) That coat had a unity from the top down, that is, unity that came from heaven and the Father, that could not be torn by those who received and possessed it. It is whole and undivided." What a sin for us not to tear the robe of Christ but the very flesh of Christ as we divide against each other. What a sin when we bite and devour each other as believers and not seek love, unity, and forgiveness. God's Church is unified and filled with those who seek unity, though there are different expressions of His body in the world all true believers will seek have a spirit of unity amongst all other fellow believers.
#unity #peace #bodyofchrist