|Thoughts on Unity & Koinonea, part 1||| Print ||
|Written by Dr. Kluane|
|Friday, 25 July 2008 15:28|
Looking for Koinonea
by Dr. Kluane Spake
In trying to apprehend the truths of unity, there are several things that we should consider. Perhaps the most amazing may well be that God decided to use us (human beings) to manifest His unity by showing forth koinonea (koinonia). As fallible as we may be -- that’s still His plan.
In this article, we’ll talk about how:
1. Unity is an already existing fact. We need a fundamental and internal change in our thinking to understand that unity already is a present reality.
2. Obtaining unity is the accepting of that which Christ died to achieve. The church belongs to Him.
3. Unity is the fundamental mark of the Church; for without unity, a gathering cannot become a church. Unity is the source of strength, authority, and organization -- whereas dissension and schism are the source of strife and confusion.
4. God expects us, as Christians, to maintain unity in the Church (Matt. 18:15-17). He expects us to act like we believe the Bible is true!
5. It is the charge of apostolic ministry to release and activate this ever-present unity – now upon the body.
CAPITAL ONE -
One night awhile ago, I had a dream about unity. I heard the words “Unity has a CAPITAL ONE.” I awoke with a start -- realizing that the church has “capitalized” on trying to get along with one another… we’ve tried to make things work among ourselves – and nothing has worked. We’ve given importance to the wrong things.
Historically we have had wars (denominational, racial, national, cultural, etc) in and because of the church for centuries. We’ve eradicated thousands upon thousands in pointless battles (both in theological wars and military wars)- because of differences in doctrine. Somehow we’ve never fully understood how to love our fellow man. Because of our narrow mindedness (capitalizing on self), we’ve turned against one another. And so we wonder, how can we recapture that spiritual passion we once excitedly held? Hey…. we’re even divisive about how to have unity!!
Christians have arrogantly clamored in defense of our favorite philosophy and doctrine insisting that it is truth with such supercilious certainty-- that now, even the very notion of truth existing is questioned. Now, there’s no way to even begin to imagine the enormous amount of credibility we’ve lost before the unbelieving world. Our haughty self-righteousness has given credence to the world’s decisions to stay far away from us.
So what can we do? Just making a rule to “have unity” does not put unity into our heart. Today’s mainline rhetoric usually leaves the impression that somehow it can be obtained by focusing on unity itself – we just have to love each other. Or maybe, we can have unity by adapting to current social trends. The most popular suggestion usually is that we could have unity IF we didn’t speak in tongues – (which indeed was the very consequence of unity)! Others continue to insist that unity could happen if we diluted or modified our theology – thereby achieving a wider-ranged consensus.
The Bible insists upon unity — therefore, it must at least be accessible, unless God is merely taunting us. It would be incorrect for us to view this COMMANDMENT as merely a theological generalization with no possibility of practical application. So what do we do? We’re all tired of the lack of unity –
Now, very softly, we begin to hear the Lord telling us that the problem is us. We’re the reason. We’ve forfeited apprehending His “INCARNATION” within us by “IN-CARNALIZING” our own preferred doctrines. We’ve not understood that true unity is an already given gift of God to us who believe. And contained within this gift comes the implication of the necessity to fulfill His purposes and exemplify His character.
Knowing these things, we can look back at the phrase, “Unity has a capital ONE.” Webster’s dictionary defines “capital” as follows:
1. The official seat of government in a political entity, such as a state or nation (or kingdom).
We can take those definitions above to discover greater meaning in unity! The “capital” ONENESS of unity is found as we look toward God – and not one another. Unity exists because of the ONE Who loves us. Jesus is all that matters. He’s our focus. He is the CAPITOL ONE – the one in charge.
He draws us together unto to Himself. “BY HIM, the whole body is JOINED and HELD TOGETHER by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work” (Eph 4:16 NIV). Jesus is the source of life, the energy, and glue that draws and holds the body TOGETHER. Every member then contributes to the harmonious action of the beautifully sustained body. Nothing is lacking when the members are in their place and functioning.
|Last Updated on Sunday, 12 February 2012 11:07|