ORTHODOXY as BARRIER to UNITY

If you’ve been observing Christianity for any time at all, you will have noticed all the divisions that have resulted from schism. This is nothing new, in fact the tendency was already evident within the Biblical narrative- in New Testament times. The sectarian spirit which is now in full bloom, can be a major barrier to the full realization of the Unity which is inherent in the Body of Christ-God’s new creation. But it doesn’t have to be a barrier; it can be instead a great source of strength in diversity if we can only recover the fulness of God’s original design. It is, among other things, a question of desire and deliberate choice to be obedient to God and to live by faith.

One thing should be abundantly clear by now: all of the various claims to “orthodoxy”, or “the right doctrine on paper” as Horton says in his previous essay, can not possibly have any legitimate claim on the universal Church. If we would all just dwell on that reality alone until it became undeniable to all, we would then be ready to confront the enormous challenge of agreeing to put our version of “orthodoxy” in the place of distant second to God’s Orthodoxy. No, I’m not going to tell you what that is, I only will tell you that it exists and does not equal any one that is out there “on paper” nor is it in any way “the sum of the parts”.

Here is William Dell speaking about the strength of the Christian which is the gift and function of Christ’s Spirit, who alone creates and nurtures (sustains) this Unity-

“And this unity of believers is their strength; and when GOD shall take away all prejudices, suspicions, jealousies, particular ends and interests, divisions, separations, and schisms, that are among his own people, and the people of GOD shall be reduced into this blessed unity among themselves, and the Lord be one, and his name one, among them all, then shall the church also be of invincible power.”

” So that all they that strive with it shall perish; and all they that war against it shall be as nothing; yea, then shall the Lord make the Church as a new sharp threshing instrument, having teeth, and it shall thresh the mountains,” (that is, the kingdoms of the world,) ” and shall beat them small, and shall make the hills,” (that is, the lesser common-wealths,) ” as chaff.”

“But till the churches of GOD attain to this unity, it shall not do any excellent thing, it shall not work any notable deliverance in the earth, neither shall the inhabitants of the world fall. When the Spirit of GOD shall be a Spirit of unity in the faithful, and shall heal all the sad dissensions that are now between them, then also shall it be a Spirit of admirable power in them. ”      – William Dell, Christ’s Spirit: the Christian’s Strength

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