We live during a time of great controversy, when dividing lines have been drawn in the sand, and the public outcry is one of anger. It is at times like these that it becomes especially necessary for the Christian to remember that all of life stands in the shadow of the cross. Therefore, it becomes necessary to take a giant step back, so that the cross of Christ will not be obscured by a preoccupation with our present circumstances.
To stand under the shadow of the cross is to be made aware of our responsibility as sanctified believers to walk in a manner worthy of our calling. Paul stated our responsibility in Philippians 2:2. “Make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.” (Philippians 2:2)
What then is the same mind, love, spirit, and purpose of which the Apostle Paul speaks? In the context, it is nothing other than the humility that is present within those who consider and respond to the sacrifice made by their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Unity is the goal as stated by Paul through the admonition “be of the same mind.” A proper view of Christ reveals an attitude of humility that was present in God’s Son, who humbled Himself by becoming a man, and not only a man but an obedient slave, and not only an obedient slave but obedient to death, and not only obedient to death but the death of a criminal.
Jesus humbled Himself in these ways because of His all consuming and eternal love for the Father and His will. We love Jesus our Lord because of His self-sacrificing love for us. We prove our love for Him by doing His will. Jesus’s will as revealed in His High Priestly prayer, just hours before His death is as follows. “The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me…” (John 17:22, 23)
If we are not placing unity above our own personal point of view at present, we are not loving Jesus as we should. Neither are we giving Jesus the glory that is due Him.
A FEW ADDITIONAL ADMONITIONS TO UNITY FROM SCRIPTURE
“Finally, brethren, rejoice, be made complete, be comforted, be like-minded, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.” (2 Corinthians 13:11) Peace, Love, and Joy are always attached to God, who is best attached to those who are unified.
“Now may the God who gives perseverance and encouragement grant you to be of the same mind with one another according to Christ Jesus, so that with one accord you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Romans 15:5, 6) Unity is the wellspring of giving God glory.
“These all with one mind were continually devoting themselves to prayer, along with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers.” (Acts 1:14) Those who are of one mind always wait for God to give the Holy Spirit as He promised
“Now I exhort you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all agree and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be made complete in the same mind and in the same judgment. For I have been informed concerning you, my brethren, by Chloe’s people, that there are quarrels among you.” (1 Corinthians 1:10, 11) To be made complete is impossible apart from being of the same mind, according to Paul.