18 Nov The Priority of Spiritual Unity
Last Sunday, Pastor Ken Lewis preached from Titus 3:3-8, and we considered the truth that new birth in Christ displays new behavior that glorifies Christ.
Read: Titus 3:9-15
This Sunday, Pastor Jeremy Chasteen will close our series in Titus with a sermon from Titus 3:9-15, teaching the truth that our unity in Christ is a display of grace in a chaotic world. As you prepare for our Sunday gathering, let this devotional from John MacArthur motivate you to pursue unity with the body of Christ.
Reflect: “The Priority of Spiritual Unity”
“The names of the twelve apostles are these: The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; and James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax-gatherer; James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Zealot, and Judas Iscariot, the one who betrayed Him” (Matt. 10:2–4).
Unity in the Spirit is the key to a church’s overall effectiveness.
Unity is a crucial element in the life of the church—especially among its leadership. A unified church can accomplish great things for Christ, but disunity can cripple or destroy it. Even the most orthodox churches aren’t immune to disunity’s subtle attack because it often arises from personality clashes or pride rather than doctrinal issues.
God often brings together in congregations and ministry teams people of vastly different backgrounds and temperaments. That mix produces a variety of skills and ministries, but it also produces the potential for disunity and strife. That was certainly true of the disciples, which included an impetuous fisherman (Peter), two passionate and ambitious “sons of thunder” (James and John), an analytical, pragmatic, and pessimistic man (Philip), a racially prejudiced man (Bartholomew), a despised tax collector (Matthew), a political Zealot (Simon), and a traitor (Judas, who was in it only for the money and eventually sold out for thirty pieces of silver).
Imagine the potential for disaster in a group like that! Yet their common purpose transcended their individual differences, and by His grace the Lord accomplished through them what they never could have accomplished on their own. That’s the power of spiritual unity!
As a Christian, you’re part of a select team that is accomplishing the world’s greatest task: finishing the work Jesus began. That requires unity of purpose and effort. Satan will try to sow seeds of discord, but you must do everything possible to heed Paul’s admonition to be “of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose” (Phil. 2:2).
Suggestions for Prayer: Pray daily for unity among the leaders and congregation of your church.
For Further Study: Read 1 Corinthians 3:1–9, noting how Paul addressed the issue of disunity in the Corinthian church.
May 5th Devotional: “The Priority of Spiritual Unity,” in Drawing Near, by John MacArthur.
Sing: Song List for Sunday
1. “All Creatures of Our God and King,” Arr. Sovereign Grace Music
2. “The Veil Was Torn,” by Crosspoint Music
3. “Psalm 133 (How Good and Sweet),” by Crosspoint Music
4. “Turn Your Eyes,” Arr. Sovereign Grace Music