'unity' Tagged Posts

'unity' Tagged Posts

Daily Devotions

He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’” vs. 31  Luke 16:26-31 There were plenty of warnings about the danger of riches in the laws of Israel, and especially in the writings of the prophets. But there was little inclination among the rich to take any of that seriously. They likely considered the different strata in society to be God’s intention. Of…

Daily Devotions

He was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.’” vs. 1 Luke 11:1-4 From the gospel record it appears that Jesus began each day with prayer, often getting up before dawn to go off by himself. Obviously his disciples noticed, and one morning when he returned to the group they asked if he would teach them to pray as John…

Daily Devotions

There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus.” vs. 29 Galatians 3:27-29 Guided by the Spirit, Paul had developed a magnificent vision of unity in the Church that aligned perfectly with the desires of Jesus for his followers. He knew that the  congregations of Galatia were a mixture of Jews and Greeks, slave and free, and men and…

Daily Devotions

I ask not only on behalf of these, but also on behalf of those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” vss. 20-21 John 17:20-23 John reports that Jesus spent his last evening with his disciples praying for unity, not only in their little group,…

Daily Devotions

When they heard this, they were silenced. And they praised God, saying, ‘Then God has given even to the Gentiles the repentance that leads to life.’” vs. 11 Acts 11:11-18 Luke leaves us with the impression that this one conversation was enough to change the minds of the Jerusalem believers and open their hearts to the uncircumcised. Of course we know from Paul’s letters that it took years for the gospel to be seen in an inclusive way. Judaizers dogged…

Daily Devotions

So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcised believers criticized him, saying, ‘Why did you go to uncircumcised men and eat with them?’” vss. 2-3 Acts 11:1-10 Oh how hard it is for the community of faith to actually practice inclusion! In Peter’s day the circumcised believers found it impossible to believe that the uncircumcised could be included among the faithful. When word came to them that Peter had been seen having table fellowship with Gentiles, they were appalled…

Daily Devotions

After this I looked, and there was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, robed in white, with palm branches in their hands.” vs. 9 Revelation 7:9-12 While certainly not to be taken literally, John’s vision, as seen through heaven’s open door, provides an expansive glimpse at the never-ending resurrected life that is ours in Christ. Here there are no great…

Daily Devotions

When many of his disciples heard it, they said, ‘This teaching is difficult; who can accept it?’” vs. 60 John 6:56-61 Many people are attracted to the person of Jesus. His teachings point us to a way of life that is admirable–we can all agree on how important it is to love others and give ourselves in humble service. But there are some teachings that have been contentious from the very beginning, and one of those has to do with…

Daily Devotions

For he is our peace; in his flesh he has made both groups into one and has broken down the dividing wall, that is, the hostility between us.” vs. 14                                   Ephesians 2:11-18 Humans love dualistic systems. We regularly speak of light and darkness, good and evil, heaven and hell–such pairs are a way to describe the universe and our various life experiences. One of the consequences of that dualistic thinking in religion has been the division of people into two…

Daily Devotions

And now I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one, as we are one.” vs. 11 John 17:11-16 As children of God and members of the peaceable kingdom we are daily reminded that we also live in the world and are subject to all its pressures and temptations. Like everyone else…

Daily Devotions

How very good and pleasant it is when kindred live together in unity!” vs. 1 Psalm 133 The psalmist nails it today! His dream has been around for a long time and describes one of our deepest yearnings. There is nothing that can be any better than unity in the life of our communities. When Jesus was completing his mission John tells us that he told his disciples that he was giving them just one commandment, that they should love…

Daily Devotions

Isaiah 25:6-9 … “On this mountain the Lord of hosts will make for all peoples a feast of rich food, a feast of well-aged wines, of rich food filled with marrow, of well-aged wines strained clear.” vs. 6 As the people of God have looked toward the future, prophets like Isaiah have painted vivid pictures of the magnificent banquet that will be prepared for us by the Lord. This feast of victory will provide the best food imaginable, rich goodies…