Be United, not Divided!

The brethren in Corinth had problems. In that congregation, there was a spirit of selfishness that seemed to prevail. Some members wanted to show themselves superior to other members in the local church. Because of this, some would seek to vaunt themselves up by saying “I am of Paul, and I of Apollos, and I of Cephas [Peter], and I of Christ” (I Corinthians 1:12). They were basically saying “I was baptized by Paul; therefore, I am more of a Christian than you are.”

Paul condemns the practice of dividing the church. He instead calls for unity in Corinth. After all, he states clearly “Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?” (I Corinthians 1:13). Neither Paul nor Apollos nor Peter died for the sins of the people, only Christ did. People are not baptized in the name of Paul, Peter, or Apollos, but of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19). Therefore, Christians should not seek to follow after the teachings of any man, but instead those of Christ. Christ is not divided, nor should His church be. This is a strict condemnation of the idea of denominationalism.

Instead, Paul calls the Corinthian Christians (and all Christians) to unity. By inspiration, Paul implores, “Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment” (I Corinthians 1:10). Is such a thing really possible? Yes, it is. Not only is it possible, it is commanded. If God’s people would simply take the Bible, God’s word, as their standard instead of following traditions and their own opinions, unity would be achieved. Not everyone is willing to do this, and they will be judged by God for their rebellion. What are you doing to promote the unity commanded by God?

-Bradley Cobb

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