Summary: God is a God of variety. He loves diversity. However, He despises division.
I. God Has Called Us to Unity
A. Text: I Corinthians 12:12-27
B. Diversity is a part of the Body.
1. God is a lover and creator of variety.
C. We are not all the same.
1. There are no big “I’s” and little “we’s”
2. God is no respecter of persons.
II. Unity Doesn’t Necessarily Mean Union
A. Ephesians 5:30 tells us: “For we are members of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones.”
B. We must unite in order to stand. Matthew 12:25, Jesus told us:
“Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and every city or house divided against itself will not stand.”
C. Galatians 3:28 “There are neither Jews nor Greeks, slaves nor free people, males nor females. You are all the same in Christ Jesus.”
III. God Desires A Unified Body; Not Uniformity!
A. God doesn’t expect all of us to be the same!
B. He doesn’t desire “cookie-cutter” Christians!
C. There are diversities of color, race, beliefs, gifts, works, etc. within the Body of Christ and it will always be so. Some of God’s people might as well get used to it.
D. That’s why Paul said, in I Corinthians 1:10, “Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing (have a uniform testimony), and that there be no divisions (dissensions) among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”
E. Paul reminds the church of Ephesus the same thing:
“I therefore…beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, Who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” (Ephesians 4:1-6)
F. John 17:20-23, Jesus prayed for unity within His body:
“I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; that they may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. And the glory which You gave Me, I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.”
G. Ephesians 2:14, Paul reminds us: “For He Himself is our peace, Who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation.”
IV. Unity Has Its Privileges
A. Obedience to the Father, Secures Our Benefits
1. Jesus said, “Whoever does what My Father in heaven wants is My brother and sister and mother.” (Matthew 12:50 )
B. Unity Makes Us Heirs With Christ
1. Romans 8:14-17 “Certainly all who are guided by God’s Spirit are God’s children. You haven’t received the spirit of slaves that leads you into fear again. Instead, you have received the Spirit of God’s adopted children by which we call out, ‘Abba, Father!’ The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. If we are His children, we are also God’s heirs. If we share in Christ’s suffering in order to share in His glory, we are heirs together with Him.”
C. Unity Breaks Down Barriers
1. Ephesians 2:19 “That is why you are no longer foreigners and outsiders but citizens together with God’s people and member’s of God’s family.