Paul says, "Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” (Eph.4:3)
Eph 4:1-6 & Rom 14
Unity and love strengthen our witness.
First, keeping unity involves effort. The Christian life is a partnership between us and God. Here, we are told to make every effort to maintain the unity God has brought us.
Second, we are told to keep or maintain unity, not to create it. The unity that Christians experience comes straight from God. We can’t create it, but we need to work at keeping it because it can be too easily lost.
Third, we can see a close connection between unity and the Spirit’s work within us. The preceding verse refers to humility, patience, gentleness and love. This has a lot of overlap with Paul’s list of the fruit of the Spirit in Gal.5:22-23. It is not surprising that it is “the unity of the Spirit in the bonds of peace” (another fruit of the Spirit). When we are filled with God’s Spirit we will make every effort to keep the unity that comes from him.
Finally, the church’s Christian unity and Christian love both bear testament to the world that God is at work. Jesus prayed in John 17:22-23, “that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me...” He also said in John 13:35, “By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” Unity and love strengthen our witness.
Let’s commit ourselves to making every effort to maintain our unity as the church.