Pardon the grotesque analogy, but what would you call a scene with scattered body parts (as in… no longer connected)? I think most of us would call it a crime scene, and a brutal one at that.
Now here’s a good one: what would you call a scene where you discovered a bunch of Christians that are no longer connected?
While it probably should be called a crime scene, we just call it “normal.”
There are many places today where the body of Christ is scattered. The body of Christ I’m talking about consists of all believers, but not many are connected any more… not to each other, and sometimes not even to Christ.
This disunity is not normal. Jesus, in one of His last requests on earth prays to The Father for Unity:
“I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me through their message. I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. And may they be in us so that the world will believe you sent me.” (John 17:20–21 NLT)
Of all the things Jesus could have asked for… why Unity?
Consider the alternative: disunity. Disunity equals dysfunction. And dysfunction is the surest way the enemy can make sure the body of Christ is ineffective.
Our enemy would like nothing more to render that body useless, perhaps even tear it limb from limb. What makes this sad is how often we do that work all by ourselves.
The enemy doesn’t even have to fight today’s body of Christ. Why would he risk injury and loss? All he has to do is to get us to fight each other. We injure each other… we lose brothers and sisters along the way… and there sits the enemy without even a scratch. Let’s face it… he’s good at what he does.
But Christ is greater still.
And Christ beckons us to this same greatness… through unity. So how do we get this unity?
Here’s a little secret: we already have Unity. It’s not something we have to get… it’s something we have to keep.
Believing in Christ gives us unity. We are brothers and sisters in a family of believers regardless of where we live, what we’ve done, the color of our skin, and even who we voted for in the last election!
Keeping unity is the challenge. When we begin to displace Jesus’ call with our own motives… when we think we have a better plan than God… when we feel we must control the outcome and “win” by the world’s standards, unity begins to atrophy.
We become separate, individual players rather than responsive body parts. It’s no small irony that there’s a specific term for a separated body:
It’s called a dismembered body.
And it’s not normal… it’s the scene of a crime.
The only way I know to fix a dis-member is to re-member.
- Remember what Christ did for ALL of us
- Remember that Christ gives us unity
- Remember that we will keep unity to the extent that we keep Christ alive in us
There’s nothing I’d like to see more in 2013 than the body of Christ cutting the crime rate on dismemberment. Don’t you think it’s time we stopped doing the enemy’s work and started doing the Lord’s work?
“We must live together as brothers or perish together as fools.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
What will you do to renew your membership in the body of Christ in 2013? What are some specific things we can do to promote unity within the body of Christ?