Ephesians 4:1-10 / Ephesians 2:13-18
How can we all get along?
Three Competing Visions:
1. The post modern approach: No one can believe anything very strongly. (ie. John Lennon’s Imagine)
2. The Domination option: smash all opposition, restrict everyone’s freedom. (ie. Vladmir Lenin, the Taliban)
3. The Christian faith approach based on Ephesians 4:2-3
Be completely humble and gentle; be patient,
bearing with one another in love.
Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit
through the bond of peace.
The Christian Approach
- Make every effort
- Getting along, creating unity is not a peripheral activity. It is at the heart of the Gospel. (Mt 5:9)
Romans 14:19 So then, make it your top priority to live a life of peace with harmony in your relationships, eagerly seeking to strengthen and encourage one another.
- The mission of Jesus in the world was reconciliation. (Ephesians 2:13-18)
- The Holy Spirit is a reconciling agent.
- “Make every effort…”- Making peace is not going to happen on its own.
What effort have I made to make peace, to reconcile, to unify?
2. The Importance of the “bond of peace.” (Matthew 5:23)
- Reconcile first, then worship.
Do everything you can to make things right.
3. The Attitude of a Peacemaker (Ephesians 4:2)
- Pride is what drives so much of the discord and the disunity that we find in our relationships with each other.
- Pride is behind so much of the criticism that we have of other Christians.
In Essentials, Unity
In Non-Essentials, Liberty
In All things, Charity
motto adopted by the Moravians
4. Unity must be maintained (Ephesians 4:3)
- Relationships need constant maintenance.
With whom have I drifted?
What relationship do I have that needs maintenance?
5. Unity BEYOND (to those outside) – Romans 12:18
- Being at peace with others and making peace between people who aren’t getting along is our vocation as Christians. It is not confined to other believers.
- The Cross of Christ and the gift of the Holy Spirit is the answer to how we can all get along.
Descend – Divest – Die
Romans 15:7 Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.