Jesus encourages church unity
We live in a fallen world. Sin closes in around us daily; we see it in our lives all the time. We tear each other down as a society, “canceling” those with whom we disagree, words we have deemed offensive or religious traditions that are no longer “appropriate.” When our religious beliefs, political opinions and moral ideologies clash, it is second nature for us to become defensive.
People become so fixated on one fact that they disagree with or one person they dislike, forgetting that that fact or person does not represent the entire picture. Believing that our own opinions are infallible is dangerous and harmful to society. When we are proven wrong, we can become bitter, hurt and angry.
One would hope to find humility and grace within the church. Unfortunately, we let political opinions get in the way of serving Jesus. Disagreements on topics like gay marriage and abortion draw attention away from Christ. The Bible calls us to unity in Christ, being of one mind and one spirit. Instead, we let opinions and hurt feelings get in the way, forgetting the immense sacrifice that Jesus paid. “
“And by that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all,” says Hebrews 10:10. Once for all, He died for our sins. Once for all, He paid the ultimate price. Once for all, He died for everyone: the alcoholics, the abortionists and prostitutes, the BLM and pro-choice activists. He died for you and for me, for Kamala and Biden and for Trump and Pence.
The gospel can save anyone, anytime, anywhere. So shouldn’t we focus on the Gospel’s message of overwhelming love instead of bickering for hours on end?
I’m not saying that we shouldn’t talk about these subjects. In fact, the Bible calls us to talk about them. However, the keyword here is “talk,” with love and understanding. The Bible doesn’t call us to debate or to agree to disagree, and it certainly doesn’t call us to argue with one another. We are told to be united in the teachings of the Word. Philippians 2:2 says, “Complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.”
However, I want to make sure that this message of love and unity isn’t mistaken for tolerance of sin (Galatians 6:1).
In the Bible, we are given specific warnings and instructions about topics like gay marriage, abortion, alcoholism or other controversial topics. However, you won’t find a verse telling you which political party is correct. What you will find are instructions to make decisions using discernment and biblical knowledge to make the most Christlike choice. Not only are we called to be united with those with whom we disagree, we are actually instructed to love one another because of those differences.
The theme of the Gospel is one of overwhelming, never ceasing love. As believers, we are called to partake in and share that love. Instead of tearing others down for their opinions or sins, we should come to them in love sharing the message of redemption. Colossians 3:4 states, “And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.”