Posted by Worldview Warriors On Monday, September 23, 2013 0 comments

When I worked for a large company in Detroit a few years back, one of the main themes throughout the whole company was diversity. Every single employee was required to take at least one diversity class every single year. It was stressed that we need to recognize and be ok with the differences that we have, whether that diversity is ethnicity, age, class, gender, etc.

While it is important to recognize the diversity in one another and how we were all created by God to be unique individuals, that seems to go against the strong theme of unity that we see in the Bible.

We see in 1 Corinthians 12:12-31 that we are all diverse, yet we all need to be unified. In particular, 1 Corinthians 12:12-14 says, “Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.” Each person is like one diverse body part, but together we are unified to form one body.

In Galatians 3:28, it sounds like the apostle Paul is writing specifically against diversity when he writes, “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” We all know that we still do have different nationalities and different genders. Paul knows that it’s always easier to love someone who’s similar to yourself, so he’s encouraging us to love one another as if we didn’t have those differences.

Jesus himself prayed that we would live in unity with one another in John 17:20-21: “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you 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.” The context of this passage is Jesus praying with His disciples, but the underlying principles here apply to us today as well. We know that Jesus and the Father are perfectly united together, and it is Jesus’ desire that we have that close of a relationship with Him as well.

In all of these verses, we see two types of unity - unity with God and unity with other people. We cannot have one of these unities without the other! If we are living in a unified relationship with God, then His love will flow through us and create unity with those around us. Because we live in a sin-filled world, we cannot live in unity with other without the love that comes only from God.

Are you living in unity with God and others, or are you solely focusing on the diversity? I challenge you to work on a unified relationship with God, so that you can live in unity with other people. Want to know how to pursue that relationship? Leave a comment on this blog post and we’ll chat about it.