Saturday, June 10, 2017

Manley: Christian unity

Saturday, June 10, 2017
    For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.
    —Romans 8:19-21 (ESV)
    [Christian Unity] is not a secular unity, and must be prompted by no secular motive. The unity we seek is deeper than anything that the world offers. Communism, Fascism, National Socialism, and even Shintoism have proved their ability to bind men together in a common enterprise with great devotion and self-sacrifice; but these are secular ideals, intermixed with self-interest, the love of mastery, and the use of force. Christian Unity can only be “in Christ.” It is based on the New Birth and New Life in Christ, and upon the oneness of all the members in the Christ who is the Head. Therefore, “the quest for the unity of the Church must in fact be identical with the quest for Jesus Christ as the concrete Head and Lord of the Church.” *
    What kind of unity, then, do we ask? It must be God’s kind, that for which Christ prayed, and which, therefore, must be in the line of God’s purpose. Will He not then take the initiative? It is for us to wait upon Him, and to go through the gates which He opens, to cast up the highway, to gather out the stones of stumbling, to lift up the standard, and to prepare the way of the Lord. (Isa. 62:10)
* Karl Barth, The Church and the Churches, p. 18
    ... G. T. Manley, Christian Unity, London: Inter-Varsity Fellowship, 1945, p. 86 (see the book)
    See also Rom. 8:19-21; Isa. 62:10; John 17:20-21; 1 Cor. 1:30-31; 2 Cor. 5:17; Eph. 1:13
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, unite us in Your Son.
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