December 28th, 2018
Strength in Unity (Ephesians 4:1-3)
Ephesians 4:1-3, “I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”
Having told us what God expects of us, Paul now moves to tell us how to bring this to pass in our lives. He teaches us in these verses how to walk the worthy walk. He mentions “unity” in Ephesians 4:3, and again in Ephesians 4:13. The word means “agreement.” It simply means that we are to walk together as one in the Lord. Let me just pause here and say that unity is God’s goal for His church. If the Lord is that interested in unity is His church then we should be interested in it as well. The church has no greater testimony than when we are united in Jesus in spite of our differences. By the same rule, there is no greater slander against the cause of Christ than a church family in which the members are at odds with one another.
God put in each of us a deep inner need for fellowship. The need for relationship is deeply rooted in all of us. According to Hebrews 10:24-25, Christian fellowship is designed to challenge us to unity and fellowship. God’s plan is that we will exhort one another and encourage one another. God, in His wisdom, didn’t give us everything we needed to follow Him successfully. Instead He chose to give us one another. God fills in the gaps (the areas of need) in the church. Have you ever noticed when God adds someone to the church body, He places them in a position that fills the gap that was needed?
Let me illustrate: In some ways, men are like redwood trees. Redwoods grow for millennia—some are two thousand years old. They reach as high as 350 feet. Yet their roots generally run only 6-10 feet below the surface. How do these top-heavy monsters stand the tests of storms and high winds? The reason they are able to is they grow close together (NO GAPS), and they literally intermingle their roots. In essence, they stand strong because they stand together. In today’s world, men often have an independent “go-it-alone” mentality. Yet, like redwoods, we will find it’s easier to stand strong when we “stand together”.
Rooted in the Word of God does 4 Things.
1. Roots are unseen: First, the important thing to do is to set aside time in privacy (underground). By doing this we immerse ourselves in God’s Word and grow in Him.
2. Roots are for taking in: Quiet time alone in God’s Word to feed upon it will ensure your spiritual growth.
3. Roots are for storage: As you daily study God’s Word, you’ll find a vast, deep reservoir of Divine hope and strength forming for the rough times ahead.
4. Roots are for support: A deep-rooted Bible study will help you to stand firm against the pressures of life. The routine care for your roots through exposure to God’s Word will cultivate you into a remarkable Christian of endurance.
Prayer, Father in Heaven, I am so thankful that You desired to have a personal relationship with me. I know that it was only possible through the shed blood of Your Son, Jesus Christ. I desire to have a deeper relationship with You. I understand that the closer I walk with You the stronger my relationship with You and with others will be, Amen.
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship.