Unity in Christ’s Light…Coming Into Full Stature

can-two-walk-together-1

 

 

 

 

…until we come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature and full grown in the Lord, measuring up to the full stature of Christ. (Eph 4:13, NLT)

God has one goal for each of us and that is to grow up in the Lord until we measure-up to the full stature of His Son. That cannot happen without the unity of His saints (See John 17:21-23). What is Christian unity? Does it happen when we reach 100% church attendance on any given Sunday? Or does it happen when we all adhere to the “articles of faith” handed down by the home office of our denomination? Maybe it happens when all the local churches (as they did in our area) agree to have a great rally together at the local fairgrounds one Sunday each year. All these things were totally foreign to the early church, yet they had a unity in the Spirit that caught the attention of the world around them. They were even accused of turning the world upside down for Christ.

Oh, how far this thing called Christianity has fallen! How about we start with just two people walking together in unity for openers? How often do we see that in our Christian experience? Many of us who “have a ministry” are still Lone Rangers at best and it shows our weakness to the spirit realm. Our “ministry” is still all about us! It is interesting to me that most of the examples of effective ministry in the New Testament are found when two people walked together in the Spirit of God. Wouldn’t this be good place to start? Maybe we should be praying that God puts us together with another saint so we can both prayerfully support one another as we encourage each other to focus on Christ and what His Spirit is saying and directing us to do.

God has no Lone Rangers when it comes to walking in the power of the Spirit much less the unity of the Spirit, yet we totally overlook this in modern Christianity. A person who walks alone is an easy target for the enemy and “one-man band” ministries fall every day. In Mark we read a very interesting thing that Jesus did. “And he called unto him the twelve, and began to send them forth two by two; and gave them power over unclean spirits” (Mark 6:7, KJ2000). It was being sent forth by Him in pairs that they were given power over the works of the devil. When will we ever learn, dear saints?

We don’t know how long Adam walked alone in the garden with God until God observed, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.” In Ecclesiastics we read:

Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falls; for he has not another to help him up… and if one prevails against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken. (Eccl 4:9-12, KJ2000)

Two saints walking together in the Spirit of Christ are that threefold cord. Unity in the Spirit and walking in the transparency of the truth of God He calls “walking in the light” and it is imperative if we are to know the fellowship that Jesus shares with His Father. In John’s first letter we read:

This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanses us from all sin. (1John 1:5-7, KJ2000)

First, notice he did not write, “If you walk in the light as He is in the light…” He wrote we! If we walk in the light of the Father and the Son, the light of the Spirit that He defines as doing the truth, not just talking about it, we will have fellowship with one another. All through Christendom we see people desiring fellowship and not finding any meaningful form because they overlook this one important prerequisite, walking in the light of the Spirit. Allowing God to shine His marvelous light into our hearts seems to be too great a price for most of us. John put the problem this way:

And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone that does evil hates the light, neither comes to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he that does truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are worked in God. (John 3:19-21, KJ2000)

Revelation by the Spirit

It is one thing to read the scriptures and another thing to have them revealed to us by the Spirit of Christ. When we walk together in the unity of the Spirit, we soon find out that His marvelous light starts showing us things that He wants us to walk in and understand so that we can enjoy the unity of the Father and the Son. We soon start experiencing our fellowship around the deeper things on God’s heart.

And their eyes were opened, and they knew him… And they said one to another, Did not our hearts burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures? (Luke 24:31-32, KJ2000)

I believe that the unity of the Spirit in revelation is what was meant when Peter wrote,

We have also a more sure word of prophecy; to which you do well that you take heed, as unto a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of one’s own interpretation. (2Pet 1:19-21, KJ2000)

Here in this passage we see light, revelation and fellowship among the saints of God who walk in His light together.  They don’t try to be complete in themselves, have their own private interpretations, or compete with each other. We need to have the light of God shine into our darkened hearts! Darkness attracts darkness and Light attracts light. We need the Day Star to arise in our hearts as we fellowship together in the Father and the Son.

Praying in God’s Love

James gave us a key to keeping our unity alive in the Spirit.

 “Confess to one another therefore your faults (your slips, your false steps, your offenses, your sins) and pray [also] for one another, that you may be healed and restored [to a spiritual tone of mind and heart]. The earnest (heartfelt, continued) prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available [dynamic in its working].” (Jas 5:16, AMP)


When we walk in unity with the one that God puts us with, we soon find that totally opening up to one another in transparency is imperative if we are to continue to walk in the light. Two people who hope to walk this way must be so crucified to themselves that they can trust one another with their deepest secrets and know that the other person will not use these things against them or turn away when we dare to “hang out their dirty laundry.” We dare to reveal such intimate things so that we can pray for one another and be healed of what caused these slips and missteps in the first place. There is one thing needed for this to happen–God’s agape love that knows no selfishness and lives for the good of others. There is tremendous power over sin when we pray for one another in this kind of unity.

The Christianity most of us have experienced in the churches rarely knows what it means to worship God in Spirit and in truth, but what a blessing it is when we dare to embrace and seek the truth with one another and truly walk in His all-revealing light. But this can only be experienced between two hearts that have been broken and crucified in Christ. May these hearts find one another by the power of God. Amen.

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26 comments on “Unity in Christ’s Light…Coming Into Full Stature

  1. Excellent article, Michael! ⭐ Describes our latest, often painful but in the end victorious experiences perfectly. I could sense the Spirit’s breath and confirmation while reading this outstanding blog post.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Michael says:

      Susanne, thank you so much for your wonderful comment. Yes, we both have been on the same track together as we have sought to walk in the light as He is in the light. Often times the honesty has hurt at first, but as we have prayed our way through those times, God has shone the marvelous light of Jesus Christ into our hearts.

      It seems that the saying is true, “It is always the darkest before the dawn.” I know that we both were about to hang-up blogging more that once for lack of inspiration in this dying process that Father has had us in. But what a marvelous fellowship there is to be had as we walk in His light. Thanks for all your prayers and encouragement on this path, dear sister and friend in Christ. And thanks to everyone else for their prayers for us as well. ⭐ ❤ ⭐
      Michael

      Liked by 2 people

      • You are most welcome, Michael.

        Indeed, my interest in blogging and/or reading anything about “godly stuff” has been quite low, or rather, has disappeared somehow into nirvana. I remember that I once felt encouraged as I could share another comment or article of which I would sense it had been inspired by God. But not so today… Meanwhile I wonder where these “feelings” have gone…? Even though I published another entry lately, it seems to me as if that had nothing to do with me any longer. VERY strange, indeed (scratching my head).

        I also thank you for your many prayers, both for my family and as to the temptations I have had to go through lately, my dear brother. I have been so encouraged to see how God works out His plans in our lives through this fellowship without us knowing when and how things might change. However, they ALWAYS change to the better, though in His time. Thanks to everyone for praying us through these difficult times of which we did not share that much publicly on the internet. ⭐ ❤ ⭐ Maybe more about it in the days ahead, God willing…

        Much love to everyone,
        Susanne

        Liked by 1 person

      • Michael says:

        Susanne, I know what you mean about feeling dead to writing or reading anything spiritual. I just went through a couple of months of that. Even the last blog I wrote before this one, five weeks ago, was blah for me. But it is a wonderful thing to be knit together with you in the Spirit, dear sister, and to be there for you in prayer when you are down in the pit of a trial, just as it has been wonderful when you have been there for me in the spirit and prayer when I was going through my testing times. It really has been just like the verse I shared in Ecclesiastics, “When one falls the other is there to lift them up.” You have been a tremendous blessing for me, dear sister. May we continue to grow into the fullness of Christ together in the days ahead. ❤

        Liked by 1 person

      • Amen to your prayer, Michael. ❤

        It has indeed been a great experience to be knit together with you in the Spirit, my dear brother. Thank you very much for having been my 'uplifter' so often, esp. during the last two 'dying years' of mine!!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Michael says:

        ⭐ 🐻 ⭐

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Pat Orr says:

    Thank you, my brother, for the encouraging blog.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Amen, Michael! See, we have unity already 🙂

    I have been a real Lone Ranger, so I know how vulnerable we can be alone in faith. The wolf goes after the unattended lamb and picks them off when no one’s looking. God has really watched out for me however,I’ve always found refuge with a group of believer somewhere. Literally refuge,shelter, however temporary.

    Something that really helped me was reading how we are called to “preserve the unity,” not to establish it or fix it. The unity is already there, much like the gates of hell shall not prevail against the church, Even if we can’t see it, it’s a fixed thing, God has already given it to us. So many problems in the church seem to stem from trying force or create unity, even to proudly declare how set apart we are……in unity. It can get crazy. We have unity at the foot of the cross and that just transcends everything.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Michael says:

      Yes, Gabrielle, we have true unity at the foot of the Cross where we and our earthy desires have been crucified with Christ. Unity is found in “not I, but Christ that lives in me,” first in Him and then in our fellow crucified saints.

      Liked by 4 people

  4. Ken Dawson says:

    Yes Mike excellent word and indeed true comodity comes when we realize our own crucifiction to our self rule and let Christ in us bring us together into His life

    Liked by 2 people

    • Michael says:

      Thanks, Ken. Your comment about crucifixion and then being brought back together according to His design in newness of life reminds me of Ezekiel ch. 37 and the valley of dry bones. While we are going through it and wondering if these bones will ever live again, we finally are reduced to total helplessness and say, “Only thou knowest, Lord.” Thank God that “that which falls into the ground is not that which springs forth!”

      Good to hear from you again, my brother.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. dimple says:

    How good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell together in unity! It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, on Aaron’s beard; down to the hem of his robes. It is as the dew of Hermon descending on Mount Zion, for there the LORD commands the blessing, even life forevermore. (Ps. 133; Louise’s memory version 🙂 )

    You struck a long established chord in me, Michael. Thank you.

    I am very tired after having a family member stay at my house several weeks while recovering from heart surgery, and would appreciate your prayers for rest and refreshing.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. It is true that our culture is self-centered. We worship the self — seek self-aggrandizement, and self-fulfillment. It can, for that reason, be difficult even to find other followers of Christ.

    Oh, there are churches of every variety. But that is not the same thing. Those of us who are followers of Christ can feel very isolated in this world.

    Since I am often confined to home because of health, fellowship online has been a godsend. My experience w/ blogging has not, therefore, been the same as yours. Blogging has given me the opportunity to think deeply about my faith. I am always encouraged, regularly educated, and often inspired by the faith of others.

    Whether you choose to continue writing is between you and God. But I am grateful for all you’ve shared.

    With love,

    A. ❤

    Liked by 3 people

    • Michael says:

      Dear Anna,

      I always love your comments and you often challenge me to see things from outside “my box” with the way your write. Your encouragement is much appreciated. I am sorry to hear that your health keeps you confined at home. May the Spirit continue to teach and encourage you through what you read online and, God willing, He will continue to use me to do so in the days ahead. Please pray that God continues to inspire Susanne and I in both our blogs. It has been a long dry spell for us both as He continues to dig deeper into our hearts and draw us further into the fullness of His Son.

      Your friend and brother,

      Michael ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  7. wanda collins says:

    Hi Michael,
    It has been a long time since I have written. Thank you so much for this blog, I read it all the time. I wanted to share my thoughts about unity and maturing. For a long time I did not understand my suffering and I was bitter but your website and the wise words you give has really caused me to grow up and to thank the Lord for my hardships. I was a spoiled brat and I wanted life to go my way. Now I am filled with JOY everyday!! I remember a while back you saying you felt much joy in the Spirit, I felt it too but thought it too weird to mention at the time. God truly loves us and wants us to Grow up!!

    Your friend in Christ,

    wanda

    Liked by 2 people

    • Michael says:

      Wanda, it is good to hear from you again. Sister, I think that all of us start out as spoiled brats when we come to Christ, but our Father knows just what we need to make us mature members of His family. I don’t think that there is greater joy to be found than when we rest in His great love instead of in our circumstances, knowing that He is using everything we go through to raise us up into the fullness of Christ. It is good to hear that you have found the joy of the Lord even when things are hard. Thanks for writing.

      Your brother IN Christ,
      Michael

      Liked by 1 person

  8. When we walk in God’s light we have fellowship with one another.

    My thought is simply about the importance of this “Fellowship” to each of us. I think it is very base to our likeness of God’s image

    The God Head is based on this type of “Fellowship” between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Wow, and we are invited to join them.

    The whole world seeks to be loved. (I.e. to have fellowship with another person based on respect, acceptance, faithfulness, honesty and care for each other.)

    The “Fellowship” used in the verse is a special kind of fellowship and cannot be manufactured by ourselves. It can only be experienced while walking in God’s light. I don’t mean what I am about to say in a flippant and self-serving way, but I find the “fellowship” experienced while walking in God’s light to be like falling in love for the first time. We honestly desire “good” for the other person and it easily flows out of us like a flood from deep within. It is so real and pure that it even allows us to throw ourselves out of the way so as to prevent any hindrance to their wellbeing.

    God is so good and this “Fellowship” of his is good too.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Michael says:

      Well said, Russ! Real fellowship in the Spirit has working in it the fruit of the Spirit and as Paul said in 1 Corinthians, the greatest of these is love. The love of the Father and the Son is the glue that holds us together in a bond that is never easily offended and wants what is best for the one who is loved. You can not get enough of this kind of fellowship because God is present in it. Walking in the light of the Spirit cleanses us from all unrighteousness and if we sin we have an Advocate with the Father for the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin. Nothing can stand in the way of this kind of loving fellowship that is ours as we abide in the Father and the Son.

      Thanks for your comment, my mountain brother,

      Michael

      Liked by 1 person

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