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Unity Series: The Benefits of Unity

October 13, 2015

This is a new series of articles surrounding the history behind Christian unity, where we’ve been, and where we are now. This is as much for myself as for you, because, like many others, even I am not totally convinced that this movement won’t be used by the Antichrist one day to form the end-times’ “one-world church.”

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However, Jesus basically told us that the most effective strategy for world evangelism will be through Christian unity (see John 17:21-23). So, will this current movement towards unity create the conditions to help build Christ’s Kingdom or will it build the Antichrist’s church of deception? I think both are likely to be true at some point in time. In the beginning, the believers began going down this road to heed Christ’s plan to draw the world to Himself. Jesus told us that unbelievers are supposed to witness our love for each other and eventually accept Him because of that, as follows (John 17:20-23):

I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.

 

There is a very distinct difference between Christian unity and the ability to coexist in peace with other “opposing” world religions. This is not what Jesus was referring to. Although, there will likely be some huge benefits from Muslims coexisting with Christians and Jews, such as world peace due to the bloodshed going on in the name of Islam these days. But that is not the type of unity Christ was referring to in that scripture, above.

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However, it could very well be the beginnings of the formation of the one-world church we are expecting to appear on the scene in the end. I will explain more about that in another article when I cover the potential dangers of Christian unity. But first, let me explain how beneficial Christian unity could be.

Huge Benefits of Christian Unity

Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brothers to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious oil upon the head, Coming down upon the beard, Even Aaron’s beard, Coming down upon the edge of his robes. It is like the dew of Hermon Coming down upon the mountains of Zion; For there the LORD commanded the blessing– life forever. (Psalm 133:2-3)

Despite the potential for Christian unity to be used for evil purposes, nevertheless, the Holy Spirit has most assuredly been leading me in this direction ever since He started me down the path to teach His plan to bring accelerated transformation to the members of the Church.* He made it a point to highlight for me that unity is one of many benefits to come from this plan. In other words, unity can only be gained if hearts are healed of their identity wounds. This is what the plan presented in Accelerated Transformation seeks to do, see book to the right.

Of course, the natural fruits that are produced as a result of our personal transformation are going to gain us greater intimacy with those we care the most about. This comes to people who have gained a higher sense of security within. When I say security, I don’t mean pride or arrogance either. These can give one a false sense of security but they have no foundation. And any house that is built on sinking sand will go down during a storm.

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Inner security gives us the ability to be more mature (less defensive, less self-absorbed) as well as more vulnerable and humble with others.

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This sort of vulnerability and humility makes us more capable of hearing the hearts of those we are listening to (including God’s); hearing what they actually have to say. Rather than interjecting our words right on top of theirs, we give them the gift of listening.

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Think about it. When was the last time someone actually listened wholeheartedly to you? It’s a rare, but very precious thing, indeed. When was the last time you listened for God to speak to you rather than filling the air with all of your own requests? There is a very good reason that He tells us to, “Be still and know I am God” (Psalm 46:10).

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What will naturally arises from maturity, vulnerability, and humility will be greater unity among Christians. Because, when you come right down to it, listening to other points of view is what helps one appreciate why others are taking the stand they are taking. Only then are people able to feel “safe” enough to discuss the possibility of changing those views to match the proper interpretation of Scripture.

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Opening our hearts to hear the points of view of others can build the trust needed to make progress in any discussion. Trust is built when we feel our closely held views are going to be respected and our hearts are going to be heard. This is the only way to come anywhere close to reaching some sort of consensus regarding certain controversial or contentious differences in the interpretation of Scripture.

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The following is an example of the transformation process David du Plessis went through when joining the ecumenical movement. Recounting a meeting with 24 ecumenical leaders in Connecticut, this Pentecostal leader among the Charismatic movement, wrote:

I could remember days when I had wished I could have set my eyes upon such men to denounce their theology and pray the judgment of God upon them for what I considered their heresies and false doctrines. … After a few introductory words, I suddenly felt a warm glow come over me. I knew this was the Holy Spirit taking over, but what was He doing to me? Instead of the old harsh spirit of criticism and condemnation in my heart, I now felt such love and compassion for these ecclesiastical leaders that I would rather have died for them than pass sentence upon them.[1]

Du Plessis had to endure many hardships from his own denomination for his expanded point of view. They even asked him to resign from the Assemblies of God for going in this direction. It would take another thirty years for them to see the err of their ways to re-institute his ordination with them. However, he was used mightily of God to bring the baptism of the Holy Spirit with speaking in tongues and all the gifts of the Spirit into the mainline churches in what would come to be known as the Charismatic Movement. He recounted how Smith Wigglesworth prophesied over him ahead of time that Du Plessis would be greatly involved God’s pouring out his Spirit upon many other churches.[2]

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*Accelerated Transformation: Maturity, Intimacy, and Unity through Emotional Healing by Tracey Nelson can be found at http://thespotlessbride.com or click on the image at the top right hand side of this page.

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_du_Plessis
  2. Ibid.
  3. http://www.catholic.org/news/hf/faith/story.php?id=51077
  4. http://www.thespotlessbride.com/#!goals
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