“Until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ…” Ephesians 4:13 ESV
I witness a lot of strife between Christians these days, especially when it comes to differing denominations. People seem to get this notion that their denomination and theology is the only way to get into Heaven, and this is especially true in the Reformed community. We walk around with our noses stuck up in the air and knowledge consuming our brains, yet there is no grace in our lives whatsoever. I think it’s time we, the Reformed community, take a look at our own hearts and ask ourselves if our actions truly reflect the love of Christ.
Paul says in Ephesians 4 that pastors and teachers are to equip the saints “until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God.” In other words, the unity we pursue is unity in the Truth. We are here in pursuit of the same thing: to know God more and to glorify Him forever (or at least that should be our main goals in life). As true Christians, we should be coming together to spread the Gospel, to love one another, and to build each other up instead of tearing each other down.
In Christ, we are unified by His perfect blood and sacrifice on the cross, no matter what our denomination is. Don’t get me wrong, there is always a time for correction and reproof, but if our rebuking of sin lacks grace and love, we will accomplish nothing. We must remember we once were lost and in sin, yet Christ forgave us forevermore when we least deserved it. The ultimate aim of Christian unity is the glory of God. Christian unity includes affectionate love and sacrifice even for those we disagree with. We must rely on God’s word and the forgiveness of Christ to bond us together until He comes again.
Father, forgive me for having a lack of grace towards those who I disagree with. Help me to take the plank out of my own eye before I start pointing fingers at others in the faith, for I know my theology is far from perfect. Teach to me to humbly and boldly love as You have loved me, although I never deserve Your love or mercy. Amen.
Do you struggle with hatred towards other denominations? Reflect on Romans 15:5.