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Working Towards Unity in the Church November 2, 2022

Wednesday, November 2nd

Take5 Devotional today written by Pastor Jason McMaster, Executive Pastor

 

Working Towards Unity in the Church

 

 

“I am obligated both to Greeks and non-Greeks, both to the wise and the foolish. That is why I am so eager to preach the gospel also to you who are in Rome.  For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile. For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: ‘The righteous will live by faith.’”

Romans 1:14-17

 

 

Paul is writing to the early church in Rome about 55-57 A.D., about 25 years after Christ’s death and resurrection. This early church is once again divided because it is filled with Hebraic Jews and Hellenistic Jews – or simply put Jews and Gentiles. What made the divide even wider was when Emperor Claudius expelled all the Hebraic Jews from Rome for a period of five years, leaving the early church in Rome to be run and led by Hellenistic Jews. When the Hebraic Jews returned, they found differences in traditions, customs, and culture that raised significant concerns. Members wanted clarity regarding what was or was not required of these Gentiles from the Torah and specifically wanted Paul to offer clarity and direction. 

Division in the church is not new. Paul had to address these divisions from the very beginning and often did so through his letters. In his letter to the Romans, Paul attempts to address these two culturally different groups of Christians by laying out a case for unity; both groups are only saved by their faith in Jesus Christ. There is unity in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. 

That which unites us as a church is much more powerful and compelling than our own human preferences that we allow to divide us. We all play a role in this and it takes work by each of us to unite together. The work of Christ is already done. Pray that the Lord can use each of us to bring unity and healing to a divided and broken world. 

 




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