In the wake of the Zimmerman trial, I am grieving. For me, the main issue isn’t the outcome of the trial but what it reveals about us – the church. We are deeply divided, and our differing opinions are sincere and passionately held. The division is so deep that we find that we cannot even talk about them, but talk we must!
Our unity as brothers and sisters in our Lord must and do transcend our differences. We have to strive for this unity, as Paul insisted:
· 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. (Ephes. 4:2-4)
How do we “keep [our] unity?” According to Paul, the emphasis must be on the Gospel:
· It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. (Ephes. 4:11-13)
However, speaking the Gospel is not merely the work of the professionals:
· Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ. (Ephes. 4:15)
However, our growth and unity are stunted because we are not speaking to one another. We remain with our own kind and have allowed the media to co-opt the conversation.
Please pray with me that our Lord will pour out upon us a zeal for His concerns and that, above all else, we would seek – more than even our own welfare - that He would be glorified in the midst of His church.