Mark 3:25 | Hebrews 12:1-2 | John 17:20,22 | Romans 2:9-10, 3:23-24
Let’s get together!
A new word has stirred up controversy lately: unity. People on both sides of the political “aisle” have cringed at the word.
How can we be united with people who think so differently on key issues? Why is it so important that we be united in the first place?
“…A family splintered by feuding will fall apart.”Mark 3:25 NLT
Jesus tells us that if we don’t figure out how to be united, we will fall apart. It makes sense–if you can’t get together, you split up.
And Jesus wants his followers, especially, to be united. He even prayed for it!
“I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me through their message. […] May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me.”John 17:20,22b NLT
How can we be united with our Christian brothers and sisters, when we do not agree on everything? The answer is: by focusing on what is important–Jesus. We can do this through prayer (individually and corporately), Christian fellowship, and studying scripture, all in response to our commitment to follow Christ.
And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.Hebrews 12:1b-2a NLT
Beyond our fellow believers, we can focus on what we have in common. For instance, many people these days are concerned with justice. We worship a supremely just God…who is also supremely merciful.
There will be trouble and calamity for everyone who keeps on doing what is evil—for the Jew first and also for the Gentile. But there will be glory and honor and peace from God for all who do good—for the Jew first and also for the Gentile.Romans 2:9-10 NLT
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.Romans 3:23-24 NLT
Perhaps we can use this common ground to introduce people to God’s mercy and, ultimately, unite them with Jesus.
Questions for Group Discussion
- Can people be united in some respects, but not others?
- Should Christians be united with non-believers? If so, how? If not, why?
Challenge: Spell it Out
Sometimes, to avoid confusion, you have to spell things out. Sometimes literally, sometimes figuratively.
That said, you are hereby challenged to spell out what you mean when you say “unity”. Are you talking about everybody, or a specific group? What does it mean to be united? What does it not mean? Is your type of unity possible–or a utopian ideal? Spell it out.
- There is no required format or word limit.
- Be as clear as possible.
- Be sure to revise your document as you see fit.