THE PRICE OF UNITY
By Vernon C. Lyons
Twentieth century theologians have streamlined
Christianity by reducing all the virtues to one–unity. In
our generation the most respectable “ism” is ecumenism. Few
people discern that there is a false unity as well as a true
unity and that each is purchased at a staggering price.
False church unity, which is the most popular kind is
purchased with freedom as the price. Gospel liberty is
obliterated and liberty of conscience becomes impractical, if
not impossible. The communion of saints is forfeited for a
communion of committees. The minority speaks for the mass and
the conscience of the individual Christian is by-passed for
the consensus of a committee.
This kind of church unity is also attained at the
price of truth. Those who major on mergers tend to believe
very little and after merging believe still less. They are
more noted for their compromises than their convictions.
Their spiritual discernment having been dulled, they move in a
doctrinal dusk that calls non-churches churches and regards
unbelievers as believers. In the mania to merge, fixed truths
become forgotten tenets.
True church unity is also costly! It is to be
obtained not by compromise, but by conflict. The faith must
not be diluted, but defended (Jude 3). It may cost a man his
unscriptural creed and his man-made catechism. This kind of
unity flows from a humility which is willing to reject human
tradition and subject itself to divine truth, as stated in
God’s Holy Word. This unity is described by the words, “One
Lord, one faith, one baptism” (Eph. 4:5). The beginning of
this unity is one Lord. The basis of this unity is one faith.
The badge of this unity is one baptism.
This true unity will cost you your prejudice, your pride, and
perhaps even your popularity.