Is It Really That Important?
Read John Chapter 17
Jn 17:23 I in them and You in Me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that You sent Me and have loved them even as You have loved Me.
We haven’t looked at Christian unity in a while. Today’s verse will allow us to once again address that issue. Christian disunity may do more to hinder the spread of the gospel than any other single factor. Jesus stated, in this verse, that unity of believers will prove to the world that Jesus and God are real and are whom they claim to be. The world may not like what they see in us, but if we are devoted to one another, living in love for one another as Christ commanded, they will be forced to consider the reality of God. Jesus said the same thing earlier in the gospel of John.
Jn 13:35 By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you love one another.”
We have a tendency to divide over things which do not matter. Most discussions between Christians and their beliefs are over some matter which is not vitally important in regard to one’s eternal destiny. For example, men like to argue over Armenian versus Calvinistic theories, differences in end-time beliefs, how important speaking in tongues might be, and even arguing over which denominations are the most true to God’s word. Well, those discussions are okay to a point. It is when they cause rivalry, disunity, and division within the believing community that they become detrimental to spreading the gospel. None of the beliefs mentioned in this paragraph will determine whether or not a man will spend eternity in Heaven or Hell.
For the most part, we need to keep our discussions within the realm of those truths which we all have in common. There are only a few biblical truths which, if not believed, can prevent a man from spending eternity with Christ. Those are the only important truths, and they are the ones on which all Christians can rally around in complete unity.
Mk 9:38 “Teacher,” said John, “we saw a man driving out demons in Your name and we told him to stop, because he was not one of us.” 39 “Do not stop him,” Jesus said. “No one who does a miracle in My name can in the next moment say anything bad about Me, 40 for whoever is not against us is for us.
However, within the discussion of SSA, we must always stand firm. The truth about whether or not homosexual behavior is against God’s will cannot be compromised as a way of preserving unity within believers. The reason is simple. The bible is very clear on this subject; same-sex actions are an affront to a Holy God. Anyone who can live continually in a willful gay life does not belong to Christ. It is impossible for the Holy Spirit to reside in a man’s heart and not convict that man of his sinful behaviors. It is of the utmost urgency that we fight for the truth on this issue. It does have a vital impact upon a man’s eternal destiny. Homosexual behavior will not send a man or woman to Hell. But to live that way, without any discipline or conviction from God, is proof that a man needs Christ as his Savior. He has never submitted his life to Christ.
Mt 16:24 Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone would come after Me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me. 25 For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it. 26 What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?
Prayer: Father, give us wisdom about what is important and what is not important. We don’t want to waste our time arguing over trivial matters. There should only be one division between men, over what prevents a man from spending eternity with Christ. Help us to know what those things are, that we may stand firm on only those issues. We do not want to be argumentative over anything which does not cause a man to miss Your narrow pathway to eternal life.