Unity Of The Spirit

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Unity Of The Spirit

In The Bond Of Peace   2
1. Introduction To Unity

                  Psalm 133
• Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For
  brethren to dwell together in unity! 2It is like
  the precious oil upon the head, That ran down
  upon the beard, Even Aaron’s beard; That
  came down upon the skirt of his garments;
  3Like the dew of Hermon, That cometh down

  upon the mountains of Zion: For there
  Jehovah commanded the blessing, Even life
  for evermore.
             Figures Of Unity

1. Pleasant And Sweet as Aaron’s Perfumed Oil
  – High Priest Presented One Holy Nation
  – United In Worship To The One God
2. Refreshing And Invigorating As Morning Dew

   Unity Among Brethren Demands

• Avoiding Two Basic Extremes
  1. Everyone who disagrees with me is in error
    •   I may like that one personally, but is divisive
    •   God, not me, is the final arbiter of truth Rom. 14:11-12
    •   Acceptance is not based on those that agree with me
  2. We accept others in open rebellion and sin
    •   This is contrary to responsible behavior Eph. 5:9-13
    •   Accepting others in sin is equally divisive 2 John 9-11
    •   We must grow in grace and knowledge 2 Pet. 1:8
     Change Requires Conviction

• Both on our part and those we study with
• We could be wrong on every subject
• 2 Cor 4:8-13 – I believe and have spoken
  – Simple recognition does not prove change needed
  – Change must be result of study and conviction
  – Else there could never be certainty about anything

             Text For Our Study
Ephesians 4:1-6
• I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beseech you
  to walk worthily of the calling wherewith ye were
  called, 2with all lowliness and meekness, with
  longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;
  3giving diligence to keep the unity of the Spirit in
  the bond of peace.
• 4There is one body, and one Spirit, even as also ye
  were called in one hope of your calling; 5one
  Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6one God and
  Father of all, who is over all, and through all, and
  in all.
        Natural Division Of Text

• Man’s Responsibility For Unity – Vs. 1-3
• God’s Platform For Unity – Vs. 4-6

2. Man’s Responsibility For Unity

             Is Unity Possible?

•   Paul tells us unity is possible
•   That God demands we have it
•   We must endeavor to maintain it
•   Common mistake to skip our part
•   Immediately Focus on God’s platform

         Five Step Walk For Unity
              Ephesians 4:1-3

•   Walk Worthy Of Our Calling
•   Walk With All Lowliness And Meekness
•   Walk With Longsuffering
•   Walk Forbearing One Another In Love
•   Walk Endeavoring To Keep The Unity Of The
    Spirit In The Bond Of Peace

   Man’s Part – Five Steps To Unity
1. Walk Worthy Of Our Calling
  – Walk
    •   In Newness of life – Rom. 6:4
    •   Not after flesh but the spirit – Rom. 7:14-25
    •   Have the disposition to follow God – Rom. 8:4
    •   As children of light – Eph. 5:8
    •   By faith not by sight – 2 Cor. 5:7
    •   Let us walk by the same rule – Phil 3:16
  – Worthy Of Our Calling
    •   Called by the Gospel – 2 Thess 2:14-15
    •   Therefore we must stand fast in that Gospel
    •   Hold Fast the traditions taught : word or epistle   13
Unity Of The Spirit

 Unity In Diversity

           Unity In Diversity Defined
• What I Mean By Unity In Diversity
  – Ecumenicalism (Limited in some churches of Christ)
  – Accepting others despite doctrinal differences
       •   Al Maxey rejects the scriptures being a pattern to emulate
       •   Rubel Shelly and Max Lucado accept sinners prayer
       •   Ketcherside and Garrett accepts non-Christians
       •   Brothers in prospect becomes brother in fact
       •   Others accept same principle in a limited fashion
  –   Accepting them in their sin
  –   Doctrine takes backseat for sake of uniting
  –   Brethren determine to agree to disagree
  –   Doctrinal disagreement is accepted as the norm
   Leroy Garrett Restoration Review
      Vol. 20, No. 10; Dec. 1978

• Exchange doctrine with love

• “It is love that unites, not doctrinal
  agreement. Love perfectly unites that which is
  divided. Even if people should reach perfect
  agreement on all the points of doctrine, this
  would not mean perfect unity. Only love made
  for perfect unity, and this when folk may be
  quite diverse in their interpretation of much of
  the Bible.”                                    16
                Al Maxey’s Unity
          Eliminate Doctrine (Pattern)
• Reflections – Al Maxey Issue #3 December 12, 2003

• “When God provided His people with guiding principles did He
  honestly expect all peoples everywhere until the end of time to
  implement those principles ONLY after the manner of the
  "approved examples" of a band of fallible disciples in one small
  corner of the globe? And if so, where has God ever declared
  this precept? Where has God declared specifically that unless
  we give or love or pray or sing JUST EXACTLY LIKE they did in
  Troas or Corinth or Ephesus or Jerusalem we will go straight to
  hell and be tortured for a zillion years?! Would someone please
  show me where God ever declared such a thing? What specific
  command of God makes the methodologies of these early
  disciples the universal standard for all peoples for all time?! I
  have yet to find that clear command in Scripture.”             17
         Al Maxey’s Unity
 Remove Us From The Primitive Model
• Reflections –Al Maxey Issue #3 December 12, 2003

• “I personally doubt ANY of the early disciples
  would recognize much of anything we do today,
  especially in our worship assemblies on Sunday
  morning. In external FORM we are so far removed
  from anything found among first century disciples
  that they would likely disfellowship the whole
  bunch of us (assuming, of course, that they were
  equally into this whole patternistic, exclusivistic,
  isolationist nonsense ... which I do not for an
  instant believe they were).”                       18
           Al Maxey’s Conclusion
          Unity In Diversity Realized
• Reflections –Al Maxey Issue #3 December 12, 2003

• “In short, this notion of preserving the
  methodologies and customs and traditions of first
  century disciples, and binding them upon all
  disciples the world over until the end of time, is
  ludicrous. It is nowhere in Scripture commanded,
  much less recommended. The principles of
  Christianity can be applied in any culture at any
  time in the history of this planet. Christianity is not
  frozen in 1st century practice or perception; it
  transcends such a local limitation.”
  Rubel Shelly’s Limited Ecumenicism
      Unity In Diversity Realized
• A Call to Action - Rubel Shelly Restoration Forum XII – ACU,
  Abilene, TX (November 1-3, 1995) transcribed by Tom Roberts

• “Third, we can engage in joint ministry with each
  other. We've been speaking at each other's
  conferences and lectureships on a limited scale and
  that practice seems not only to have been generally
  well received but to be growing. Frankly, more of us
  have been invited out of the acappella churches to
  be a part of lectureships and teaching settings at
  Christian Church schools and congregations than the
  reverse.”                                            20
   Rubel Shelly’s Limited Ecumenicism
       Unity In Diversity Realized
• A Call to Action - Rubel Shelly Restoration Forum XII – ACU, Abilene, TX
  (November 1-3, 1995) transcribed by Tom Roberts

• “The Woodmont Hills Church of Christ, the church were I
  preach in Nashville, and First Christian Church of Nashville are
  sharing a worship facility. Some of you already know that.
  Others of you, perhaps, would be shocked to learn that about
  three and a half months ago, the acappella Woodmont Hills
  Church of Christ sold its building. …As it turned out, the most
  practical option that was received warmly by both churches
  was a shared use of the facility of an independent Christian
  Church on Franklin Road. They'd accommodated us by moving
  their Sunday evening service a bit later and we have use of
  that building on Sunday from 1 to 6 and we have a 1:30 and
  4:15 repeat of the same worship hour and Sunday school in
  between at 3. We do our mid-week assemblies in there on 21
Rubel Shelly’s Limited Ecumenicism

• A Call to Action - Rubel Shelly Restoration Forum XII – ACU,
  Abilene, TX (November 1-3, 1995) transcribed by Tom Roberts

• “But not only that, we're sharing and exchanging the uses of
  personnel. We co-hosted a seminar by Lyle Shower (spell ?).
  We will do some things together in the immediate future with
  regard to hosting other events of spiritual significance for our
  two churches that will allow us to affirm our relationship to be
  a positive one. We intend for these 18 to 24 months not
  simply to be a time of landlord and tenant relationship, but a
  time of healing between these two congregations, so that we
  can henceforth work together in productive ways and not be
  obstacles to each other. We believe that's against the will of
  God.”                                                           22
       Max Lucado’s Sinner’s Prayer

• Recorded In a Lubbock radio sermon
• “God is ready to be your Father. Maybe you never
  understood that the invitation was for everyone.
  Maybe you thought that you weren't worthy. Maybe
  now you do understand God will make you worthy and
  the invitation is for you, and all you have to do is call
  him Father. Just call him Father. Just turn your heart to
  him even right now as I am speaking. Call him your
  Father, and your Father will respond. Why don't you do
  that? Father, I give my heart to you. I give you my sins. I
  give you my tears. I give you my fears. I give you my
  whole life. I accept the gift of your Son on the cross for
  my sins. And I ask you, Father, to receive me as your
  child. Through Jesus Christ I pray.”
           Max Lucado’s View Of Baptism

• Recorded In the same Lubbock radio sermon

• “If today is the first day you've ever prayed a prayer like
  that, could you do me a favor? Could you write me a
  letter? I don't have anything I am going to ask from
  you. I do have a letter I would like to send to you. I'd
  like to give you a word about the next step or two. I
  want to encourage you to find a church. I want to
  encourage you to be baptized. I want to encourage you
  to read your Bible. But I don't want you to do any of
  that so you will be saved. I want you to do all of that
  because you are saved.”                                   24
    Unity In Diversity The Only Unity

• The Twisted Scripture by Carl Ketcherside

• Some of those who mistake conformity for unity appear
  to be startled when they first learn that we suggest there
  may be unity in diversity. Actually we go much farther
  than that. We assert that if there is any unity at all it
  must be unity in diversity, if it is to be enjoyed by free
  men. There is no other kind of unity except for slaves.
  Our opponents themselves are proof of this. Not one of
  them is a member of a congregation where every person
  understands each scripture alike. Each party agrees upon
  the factional test which it has singled out and made the
  supreme issue. Upon every other matter the greatest
  latitude is permitted. Conformity does not make for
  better Christians, but for greater hypocrites.             25
   Unity In Diversity Not By Conformity

• The Twisted Scripture by Carl Ketcherside
• ”Every group which contends for conformity of every
  member is inconsistent. Those who quote scriptures
  urging the saints to live in harmony under the delusion
  that unity and harmony are identical, misunderstand
  both human nature and the scriptures.”
• “Of even greater significance is the fact that if unity
  came by intellectual agreement rather than as a grace-
  gift from God, it could never produce a peace that
  passes understanding.”
• “Conformity as a basis of unity is a fantasy, whether in
  the realm of politics, economics, philosophy or religion.”26
Unity In Diversity – Limited Ecumenicism

• http://www.thefreedictionary.com/ecumenici
  – Noun 1. ecumenicism - (Christianity) the doctrine
    of the ecumenical movement that promotes
    cooperation and better understanding among
    different religious denominations: aimed at
    universal Christian unity

Unity In Diversity – Limited Ecumenicism

• http://encarta.msn.com/dictionary_18616074
• Ecumenism – Synonym of Ecumenicalism
  – noun Definition: Church unity: a movement
    promoting unity between different Christian
    churches and groups

Unity In Diversity – Limited Ecumenicism

• http://www.merriam-
  – Main Entry: ec·u·men·i·cal Pronunciation: \ˌe-kyə-ˈme-
    ni-kəl, -kyü-\ Function: adjective Etymology: Late Latin
    oecumenicus, from Late Greek oikoumenikos, from
    Greek oikoumenē the inhabited world, from feminine
    of oikoumenos, present passive participle of oikein to
    inhabit, from oikos house — more at vicinity Date:
    circa 1587 1: worldwide or general in extent,
    influence, or application 2 a: of, relating to, or
    representing the whole of a body of churches
    b: promoting or tending toward worldwide Christian
    unity or cooperation

Unity In Diversity – Limited Ecumenicism
• Ecumenicism
   –   Attempt To Unit Denominations of the World
   –   By Minimizing Doctrinal Differences
   –   Accepting each other in their differences
   –   Has not united denominations of the world
   –   Accepting divergent doctrines of others
   –   No denouncing error of others doctrines only disagreements

• Limited Ecumenicism Of Unity In Diversity
   –   Attempt To Unit All Believers in Christ
   –   By Minimizing Doctrinal Differences
   –   Accepting each other in their differences
   –   Will not unit the splintered factions of a divided body
   –   Acceptance of those in error only leads to further error
   –   No denouncing error of others doctrines only disagreement
          Unity In Diversity Is Not
•   Diversity of Nationality
•   Diversity of Culture
•   Diversity of Race
•   Diversity of Education
•   Diversity of Regional Background
•   Diversity of Physical Characteristics
•   Diversity of Talent
•   Diversity of Spiritual Knowledge
•   Diversity of Spiritual Maturity
•   Diversity of Politics                   31
  Some Promoting Unity In Diversity
• See the Corinthian church as the model
  – They had unity in diversity in action
  – They didn’t even remove an immoral member
• See the seven churches of Asia as models
  –   Ephesus lost their earlier love – Rev 2:4
  –   Smyrna had no stated problems – Rev 2:8-11
  –   Pergamos had diverse doctrinal issues Rev 2:12-15
  –   Thyatira had the woman Jezebel – Rev 2:18-20
  –   Sardis had a name but was dead – Rev 3:1
  –   Philadelphia had no stated problems Rev 3:7-12
  –   Laodicea was luke warm Rev 3:14-15
What Did God Say Of These Models Of
         Unity In Diversity?

• 1 Corinthians 1:10-13
• Now I beseech you, brethren, through the name of our
  Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing and
  that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be
  perfected together in the same mind and in the same
  judgment. 11For it hath been signified unto me
  concerning you, my brethren, by them that are of the
  household of Chloe, that there are contentions among
  you. 12Now this I mean, that each one of you saith, I
  am of Paul; and I of Apollos: and I of Cephas; and I of
  Christ. 13Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you?
  or were ye baptized into the name of Paul?
What Did God Say Of These Models Of
         Unity In Diversity?
• 5 of the 7 were told to do something to repent
   – Ephesus remember, repent, do first works – Rev 2:5
       • Or I will remove thy candlestick from its place
       • No longer have Christ walking among it
   – Pergamos repent Rev 2:16
       • Or I will come quickly
       • Fight against thee with the sword of my mouth
   – Thyatira given time to repent but she did not – Rev 2:21
       • I will cast her in a bed of tribulation and kill her children
       • That all church will know I search the hearts
   – Sardis remember, hold fast, repent – Rev 3:2-3
       • Be watchful and strengthen what remains
       • I will come like a thief
   – Laodicea be zealous and repent Rev 3:16-19
       • Spiritually Wretched, miserable, poor, blind, naked
       • Buy gold and white garments and eye salve
               Unity In Diversity

•   Accepts division of doctrine
•   Accepts division of clear bible teaching
•   Accepts division within the body as normal
•   Accepts division of major biblical conformity
•   Accepts and promotes division
•   Overlooks significant doctrinal differences
    Unity Is Not Promotion Of Error
•   Common Salvation – Jude 3
•   One Flock – John 10:16
•   Unity of the Spirit – Eph. 4:3
•   Stand Fast In One Spirit
•   Striving together For One Faith – Phil. 1:27
•   Unite All Children Of God – John 11:52
•   Worship In Spirit and Truth – John 4:24
•   Truth Will Set You Free – John 8:32

    Unity Promotes Doctrinal Conformity

•   Faith Once Delivered – Jude 6
•   Abide in the Doctrine of Christ – 2 John 9-11
•   Steadfast in Apostles Doctrine – Acts 2:42
•   All Speak The Same Thing – 1 Cor. 1:10
•   No Division But be perfectly joined together
•   In The Same Mind And IN The Same Judgment

      Is Unity In Diversity Worthy Of Our
•   Stand Firm In Gospel       •   Unity In Diversity
•   Unity in reality desired   •   Unity in name only
•   Follow God who calls       •   Depart from God’s call
•   Hold apostolic tradition   •   Depart apostolic teach.
•   Teachings/writings         •   Distort teachings
•   Treading same path         •   Not walking same path
•   Minding same things        •   Not mind same things
•   Led by the spirit of God   •   Led by diversity
             Five Steps To Unity
• 2. Walk With All Lowliness And Meekness
  – Lowliness (compound word)
     1. Not raising far from the ground, low
     2. Having the mindset of ones low standing
     • Humility of mind understands own low worth before God
     • Not advance teachings contrary to God’s direction
     • Then expect others to follow their lead over God’s

               Five Steps To Unity
• 2. Walk With All Lowliness And Meekness
  – Meekness
     •   Equestrian term combining strength with gentleness
     •   Might, Strength, Power brought under control
     •   To retain strength of poise under provocation
     •   Not lend itself to promoting of self interest
     •   Not rebellious against God’s instruction
     •   Disposition of gentleness not divisive or confrontational
     •   Jesus was epitome of meekness – Mt. 11:29
     •   Matthew 15 demonstrate the dichotomy of meekness
          – Jesus stood strong against error – Mt. 15:1-8
          – Jesus was gentle with Canaanite woman – Mt. 15:21-28
            Five Steps To Unity
• 2. Walk With All Lowliness And Meekness
  – Jesus demonstrated meekness and lowliness
  – Being strong in opposition against error
  – While possessing a meek and gentle spirit
  – Minor differences will not be pushed to division
  – Departures must be met with strong resolve

             Five Steps To Unity
• 3. Walk With Longsuffering
  – To suffer long, not lose patience,
  – Slowness to avenge a wrong done against us
  – Makros – long & Thoomos – heat, quickly boiling
  – All Christians must have as fruit – Gal 5:22
  – God’s longsuffering antediluvian world – 1 Pet 3:20
  – God was angry with man’s wickedness – Gen 6:5
  – But kept anger in check while Noah built the ark

            Five Steps To Unity
• 4. Walk Forbearing One Another In Love
  – To suffer, to bear with, endure, to hold up
  – Quality that holds up and bears under differences
  – It puts up with others when problems surface
  – Puts up with others in a spirit of love
  – Paul tells how to hold up another in love – 1 Cor

     Paul Tells How To Hold Up Another In
              Love – 1 Cor 13:4-8a
•   What Love Is            •   What Love Is Not
•   Suffers long            •   Envious
•   Kind                    •   Boastful
•   Rejoices in the truth   •   Arrogant
•   Bears all things        •   Rude
                            •   Insist on his own way
•   Believes all things
                            •   Irritable
•   Hopes all things
                            •   Resentful
•   Endures all things
                            •   Rejoice in iniquity44
           Requirements Of Love

• Brethren Not overlook error or sinful behavior
  – Corinth overlooked error of fornication 1 Cor. 5:1
  – They did not mourn the division but accepted it
  – They were to judge him that wrought this Vs. 3
• Walk in Lord’s commandments – 2 Jo 5-6
• Shared responsibility to correct one another
• Correct Brothers we see in error – Jas 5:19-20

              Forbearing In Love

•   Love enough to save from sin
•   Love enough to save a soul from death
•   Does not overlook sin
•   But holds up another
    – By correcting brethren in error
    – By opposing sin wherever we find it
• Forbearing spirit go a long way for unity
    – Better marriages
    – Better employer and employee relationships
    – Better relationships with brethren           46
              Five Steps To Unity
• 5. Walk Forbearing One Another In Love
  – To suffer, to bear with, endure, to hold up
  – Quality that holds up and bears under differences
     • Not accepting doctrinal differences – 1 Cor 1; 5
     • Puts up with others when differences arise
  – It puts up with others when problems surface
  – Puts up with others in a spirit of love
  – Paul tells how to hold up another in love – 1 Cor
              Five Steps To Unity
• 5. Walk Endeavoring To Keep The Unity Of The
  Spirit In The Bond Of Peace
  – Endeavoring as used by Paul
     • To Timothy after being forsaken by others – 2 Tim 4:9-13
        – Do diligence to come shortly unto me
     • To Timothy to come before winter – 2 Tim 4:21
        – Do thy diligence to come before winter with his coat and books
        – Paul wanted Timothy to hurry up, make sure to come
     • To Titus come to Nicopolis – Titus 3:12
        – Be diligent to come unto me to Nicopolis
        – For I have determined to winter there
              Five Steps To Unity
• 5. Walk Endeavoring To Keep The Unity Of The
  Spirit In The Bond Of Peace
  – Endeavoring as used by N.T. writers
     • The apostles to Paul remember the poor – Gal 2:10
        – Which I also was forward (zealous ASV) to do
     • To Timothy work as an evangelist– 2 Tim 2:15
        – Give diligence to show thyself approved unto God
        – A workman not ashamed rightly dividing the word
     • Encouragement to enter our rest– Heb 4:11
        – Let us labor therefore to enter that rest
     • Paul’s use in our text – Eph 4:3
      To Keep The Unity Of The Spirit
•   Hurry up to do it
•   Make every effort to get the job done
•   To exert oneself in the task
•   It takes work and great effort
•   Not just something we would like to do
•   Something we must do and be quick to do it
•   Seems to be a foreign concept to many
   Every Disagreement Now Becomes A
            Test Of Fellowship
• Biblical instruction when disagreements come
   – Hasten to keep the unity of the spirit in peace
   – Exert one’s self to be united
   – Working quickly toward uniting brethren
• Divisive Spirit
   – Hastening to find something over which to divide
   – Very little effort exerted to maintain unity
   – Every effort is exerted to force conflict and discord
   – Every disagreement becomes a test of fellowship         51
         In The Bond Of Peace
• Translated as band, bond, string, or chain
  – That which binds together, a bond
  – Used of ligaments that bind together the body
  – Of things that are tied together in a bundle
• The bonds of peace
  – Unite brethren together who might disagree
  – As the human body is united by the ligaments
• We must endeavor, work, make ever effort
  – To maintain the unity of the spirit
  – In the bond or bands of peace that tie us together
 How The First Century Kept Unity
• Division at Corinthian church – 1 Cor 1:10-13
  – Ungodly Attitudes Of Corinthian Brethren
     • Divided over different preachers who taught them
     • Paul worked to correct the division in the church
  – How Paul Correct Them
     •   Now I beseech, implore, beg you, please do this
     •   That ye all speak the same thing
     •   That there be no division among you
     •   That you be perfectly jointed together (bound together)
     •   Be of the same mind and the same judgment
  – Unity of the spirit in the bond of peace
     • Criticism so sharp – see vss. 14-17
     • Feared the redemptive work of Jesus would be vain           53
      The Import Of 1 Cor 1:14-17
• Denominational friends miss last point Vs. 17
  – They think Paul says baptism is unimportant
  – Paul taught – Col 1:13-14
       • It translates one out of power of darkness
       • And into the kingdom of Hid dear son
       • It is extremely important and we understand that
• Some Of Us Miss Paul’s First Point Vs. 14-16
  –   The horrible ugliness of division
  –   So horrible Paul was glad he baptized only a few
  –   To limit the ammunition for dividers to use
  –   Our focus should be teaching not baptisms
     Some Of Us Have The Divisive
          Corinthian Spirit

• Allow things to divide us
• With an ungodly spirit unworthy of Christ
• How many when division arises
  – Are working toward unity of the spirit
  – Or are parsing words looking to divide

  Jesus Prayed For Unity - John 17:20
• Neither for these only do I pray, but for them also
   that believe on me through their word; 21that
   they may all be one; even as thou, Father, art in
   me, and I in thee, that they also may be in us:
   that the world may believe that thou didst send
   me. 22And the glory which thou hast given me I
   have given unto them; that they may be one,
   even as we are one; 23I in them, and thou in me,
   that they may be perfected into one; that the
   world may know that thou didst send me, and
   lovedst them, even as thou lovedst me.

 Summary Of Man’s Part For Unity

1.   Walk Worthy Of Our Calling
2.   Walk With All Lowliness and Meekness
3.   Walk With Longsuffering
4.   Walk Forbearing One Another In Love
5.   Walk Endeavoring To Keep The Unity Of The
     Spirit In The Bond Of Peace

3. God’s Platform For Unity

       Seven Fold Structure For Unity
              Ephesians 4:4-6

1.   One Body
2.   One Spirit
3.   One Hope Of Our Calling
4.   One Lord
5.   One Faith
6.   One Baptism
7.   One God And Father Of All
        1. One Body – One Church

•   He is the head of the church – Eph 1:22-23
•   The church is the ONE body of Christ
•   He purchased it with His blood – Acts 20:28
•   His because He built it – Mt. 16:18
•   Also God’s church - 1 Cor. 1:1-2
•   God’s because He planned it – Eph. 3:10-11

                Only One Church

• It is Jesus’ Church
  – He built it – Mt. 16:18
  – He purchased it with His blood – Acts 20:28
• It is God’s church – 1 Cor. 1:1-2
  – Planned in the eternal mind of God – Eph 3:10-11
  – Which He purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord
• More Than Just A Name
  – It is to whom we belong
      One Universal Church Many Local

•   Each built on ONE foundation – Eph 2:19-22
•   Each united in doctrine and practice – 1 Cor 4:17
•   Each standard is doctrine of Christ – 2 Jo 9-11
•   Unity In Diversity Disrupts This Framework
    – Not built on the foundation of apostolic teaching
    – Unity is no longer in conformity to God’s word
    – Doctrine of Christ is less important for unity
      The Denominational Model
• Differing doctrines and practices
  – Destroys the unity for which Jesus prayed
  – Destroys the unity God planned in one body
• Unity In Diversity Is A Denominational Model
  – It divides by accepting those teaching error
  – Making the doctrine of Christ unimportant to unity
  – Unity in diversity opposes unity of the spirit
  – It divides those in the one body
  – Overlooking doctrine for limited ecuminicism

 Unity Of The Spirit Must Be Achieved

• Endeavoring To maintain the proper spirit
  – Immaturity in the faith alone does not divide
  – Must be accompanied by ungodly attitude
• We Must Not Deviate From The One Body
  – And allow acceptance of division
  – Which will segment the One body God planned
  – Forcing division over every difference among us
  – This proves to the world this is not God’s design
           1 Corinthians 14:33

• For God is not the author of confusione, but of
  peace, as in all churches of the saints. e

        2. One Spirit – One Source Of
• H.S. Teach Apostles All Things – John 14:26
• H.S. Continued Work Of Jesus – John 16:12-13
    – Jesus had more to teach that they could not bear
    – Spirit of truth would guide them into all truth
    – H.S. delivered truth from God to man
•   H.S. Inspired Men With God’s Very Words
•   Only H.S. Knows God’s Mind – 1 Cor. 2:11-13
•   Not handed down man to man – 2 Pet. 1:19-21
•   Men spake from God moved by H.S.
        One Spirit – One Revelator

•   All Divine Truth Revealed By H.S.
•   All Disciples Must Receive One Inspiration
•   Through the One Spirit God revealed all truth
•   No creeds or writings of man acceptable
•   The One Spirit Is the Only Revelation Of God

     3. One Hope Of Our Calling – One
            Reward Of Heaven
•   Our sure and steadfast reward – Heb. 6:18-19
•   It is the ONE hope of our calling
•   We were called for our glory – 2 Thes 2:13-15
•   Our calling is spiritual so is our reward
•   Our reward must be in keeping with our calling
•   Our calling is not by carnal means
    – Gymnasiums, Day Care Centers, Family Life Centers
    – Are carnal means calling a carnal people
    – Our calling is spiritual not carnal
• Called for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord
Other Hopes Destroy Hope Of Heaven

• Premillennial Hope – Battle Of Armageddon
• Mormon Hope – To become a god or goddess
• J.W. Hope – To live on an earthly paradise

         4. One Lord – One Master

•   Master – He To Whom A Person Belongs
•   He is the possessor and disposer of a thing
•   We are what the Master owns – Acts 20:28
•   He alone must be master of our lives
•   Unity In Diversity accepts those in sin
•   Accepting sin destroys our subservient position
•   We must consistently follow our master
 5. One Faith – One System Of Faith

• One Doctrine
• E.W. Bullinger’s Figures Of Speech In The Bible
   – One faith is one system of faith, or one doctrine
   – It is “the faith”
   – Metonymy of the Adjunct
      • The thing “faith” is put for the object itself
      • Faith is put for the thing believed
      • Faith put for doctrine
• The Faith Once Delivered To The Saints – Jude 3
• It is that which must be obeyed – Acts 6:7
• Unity In Diversity Destroys The Faith by accepting error
    We Must Submit To The One System
               Of Faith

•   Without which unity is not possible
•   Union with error is not Unity Of The Spirit
•   Ecumenicists accept those practicing error
•   Believe from one of two sources – Mt. 21:23-25
    – From heaven
    – From men
• One system of faith makes unity possible
    – Anything else is another gospel – Gal. 1:6-9
        6. One Baptism – One Way Of
            Contacting Jesus Blood

•   The Bible References several baptisms
•   Only One baptism cleanses us of sin
•   One burial and resurrection with Jesus
•   One baptism for remission of sins – Acts 2:38
•   One new birth creating a new creature

  7. One God And Father – One Great

• One Great Architect
• One Great Planner with One great plan
• One Father who animates us – Eph 3:20-21

• Man’s Obligation For Unity
  – Walk Worthy Of the Calling
  – Walk with all lowliness and meekness
  – Walk with longsuffering
  – Walk with forbearance for one another in love
  – Walk endeavoring to keep the Unity Of The Spirit
    In The Bond Of Peace

• God’s Sevenfold Platform For Unity
  – One Body
  – One Spirit
  – One Hope Of Our Calling
  – One Lord
  – One Faith
  – One Baptism
  – One God and Father of All

 Let Us Endeavor To Answer Jesus’
• John 17:21
• that they may all be one; even as thou, Father,
   art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be
   in us: that the world may believe that thou
   didst send me.

• God give strength to develop a spirit of unity
• Wisdom to maintain structure God provides
s: that the world may believe that thou
  didst send me.

• God give strength to develop a spirit of unity
• Wisdom to maintain structure God provides

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