Ephesians 4(b)

Please remember that we are gathering this evening to read through Ephesians 4. The menu tonight is hamburgers, French fries, and homemade peach cobbler. Please bring a guest.

This weekend I ran across two observations on the unity of the church.

Bishop Seraphim Sigrist (OCA) in his book Theology of Wonder compares the basic Jewish statement of faith – “Hear O Israel, the LORD is God, the LORD is ONE” (Deut. 6:4) – with Jesus’ high priestly prayer – “The glory which thou hast given me I have given to them, that they may be ONE even as we are ONE, I in them and thou in me, that they may become perfectly ONE” (John 17:22). In putting these two verses together, Bishop Seraphim observes that the concept of unity is not simply a unity among Christians, but that unity or oneness is part of the essence of who God is. Our unity, therefore, is a reflection of the unity of the Divine, and as we become perfectly united with each other, so too do we become perfectly united with God.    

Bishop William Alexander Guerry (8th Bishop of South Carolina (d.1928)) said “We should strive for unity, not uniformity. Uniformity is mechanical, barren, unfruitful, and unprofitable. Unity is organic, living, and capable of endless growth. If we are to be truly catholic, as Christ himself is catholic, then we must have a church  broad enough to embrace within its communion every living human soul.” In his pursuit of unity, Bishop Guerry, in 1914, proposed installing a black Suffragan (Assistant) Bishop in South Carolina. Because of his attempts for racial unity in the Diocese, +Guerry was murdered by one of his own priests. (And we think it’s bad today!)

Dinner is at 6, Study at 6:45, and Compline at 7:55. Hope to see you here.

There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of us all, who is above all and through all and in all.

Ephesians 4:4-6

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