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Outline and Audio Sermons:
Dr. Walter D. Huyck Jr. D.Min.

www.thischristianjourney.com


Beyond Comprehension

A Unified Church

Ephesians 4.1-7, 13-16

[Resourced from Adrian Rogers, Unity in the Church] 

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[Illustration:  There was a man who was ship wrecked on a desert Island.  He was there all by himself for many years.  Over the years he had built himself a wonderful house, and then a magnificent Church complete with a steeple.  Then he built himself another great building.  ] 

[When some rescuers arrived they ask him, “What is that big building?”]

[He answered, “That is my house.  That is where I live.”]

[Then they asked, “What is that magnificent building?”]

[He said, “That is a Church.”]

[Then they finally asked, “Well, what is that other building?”]

[He Replied, “That is another Church.  I had an argument in the first Church and moved my membership.”] 

[What about Unity?] 

[Ephesians 4:3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.]

[Psalms 133:1 Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! ]

[Proverbs 6:16,19 These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: . . . and he that soweth discord among brethren]

[Unity in the Church is produced by the Holy Spirit.  It is produced and provided because it is God’s desire for the Church.  The Church cannot produce unity, the Holy Spirit produces, and we are commanded to preserve it.] 

Three Concepts of our Unity: 

A.    The Ground of our Unity (Eph 4.3-6) [-  Truth.  There are seven basic truths that are the ground of our unity.  No one can call himself a Bible believing Christian who does not believe these basic seven truths.  These are the foundation of our unity.  The Ground of our unity is Doctrinal and Spiritual.] The Seven Truths of Unity: 

1.      There is One Body (vs 4) [– This body is the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ.] 

a.       [Not one congregation, but one body.] 

b.      [Not one denomination.  Not all Baptists are going to make it to heaven.  But if you are twice born, then you are a part of the Body of our Lord Jesus Christ.] 

c.       [Not an organization, but a living organism, a body.  Now a living organism has organization, but this body also has life.] 

d.      [There is a local expression of this universal Church Body.  Every New Testament Christian ought to be a member of a local New Testament Congregation.] 

1)      [Illustration:  A man once approached a church choir director and said, “I want to sing in the choir.” 
The Choir director asked, “Are you a member of this Church?”
The man responded, “I am a member of a Church, just not this Church.”
The Choir director asked, “What Church are you a member of?”
The man responded, “Of the invisible Church.”
The Choir Director responded, “I have a suggestion for you.  You go and sing in the invisible Church Choir.”] 

2)      [A local Church is the expression of the functioning body of Christ.  It has Pastors, Deacons, Ministry Teams, and performs the work of the body of Christ in our world.] 

3)      [If you are a disunified member of the Church, if you sow discord among the brethren in the Church, you dishonor the head of the body, which is Christ, you harm and damage the other members of the body, and you harm yourself as a member of the body.] 

2.      There is one Spirit (vs 4) [– The Holy Spirit who is the substance of our life, the secret of our strength, and the source of our unity.] 

a.       [It is the Holy Spirit that knows each and every other member of the Church of our Lord.  You may not know the name of every other Christian, but the Holy Spirit knows us all.] 

b.      [Dr. Vance Havner said, we are not to be wired together by organization, frozen together by formalism, rusted together by tradition, but melted together by one Spirit.] 

3.      There is One Hope (vs 4; Titus 2.13) [– This hope is the second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.  ] 

[Titus 2:13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; ]

a.       [You cannot call yourself a New Testament, Bible Believing Christian if you do not hold to this blessed hope.] 

b.      [Now there are many different positions concerning the second coming of Christ (A millennial, Pre millennial, and Post millennial).  Some don’t understand the differences in these positions.  That’s okay, so long as we are all looking forward to His future coming.] 

c.       [We are living in the closing shadows of this age.  The labor pains and contractions are getting especially sever and close together.  We must all be looking for and expecting the second physical coming of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.] 

4.      There is One Lord (vs 5; Philip 2.10-11) [- This one Lord is Jesus Christ.] 

a.       [The early Church did not call Him Jesus nearly as much as they called Him the Lord Jesus.] 

b.      [The idea of a Lord is foreign to contemporary Christianity in America.  We recognize Jesus as Savior, but we rarely want Him as Lord.  ] 

c.       [The Church has a head, who is Lord, who arranges the body as He sees fit, and we must learn to get under the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Jesus is Lord!] 

[Philippians 2:10-11 10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. ] 

5.      There Is One Faith (vs 5; Jude 1.3; 2 Tim 4.7) [– The unified body of truth we call the Bible.] 

[Jude 1:3 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. ]

a.       [This one faith is the Bible.  There is one Bible and it is the inspired revealed Word of God.] 

b.      [When Paul said, “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:” (2 Tim 4.7) he is talking about keeping the Word of God.] 

c.       [We must all hold to the same Word of God, the Bible.  There is no other book that reveals the will and way of God.  There is not other book that is the written Word of God.  Divinely inspired, divinely given, divinely preserved.] 

6.      There is One Baptism (vs 5; 1 Cor 12.13) [– This is not immersion or sprinkling.  This is talking about the Baptism of the Holy Spirit that grafts us into the Body of Christ.] 

[1 Corinthians 12:13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. ]

a.       [We believe in water baptism, but water baptism only symbolizes the greater truth of what God has done for us and through us.] 

7.      There is One God and Father or all (vs 6; Eph 4.6) [– This is the one and only living God of all.] 

[Ephesians 4:6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. ] 

a.       [This is not Allah, this is Jehovah God.  The one and only God.  He is not one of many God’s on the horizon of polytheism, He is the one and only living God.] 

b.      [You can not know Him apart from Jesus Christ.] 

B.     The Glory of our Diversity (vs 7; Rom 16.17) 

1.      What is Unity? 

a.       Unity is not Unison.  [We can sing in harmony without singing same thing at the same time.  If everyone in the choir is singing the same note, that would be boring.  In harmony sometimes we sing different things, but they all compliment the same piece of music, they all work toward the same goal.  We can hold the same basic truth while presenting it in many different lights.] 

b.      Unity is not Uniformity.  [We don’t all have to look the same.  We are not to be an army of clones.  We don’t always have to dress the same.  Uniformity comes from without, Unity comes from within.] 

c.       Unity is not Union.  [You can be in the same Church and not be in unity.] 

1)      [Someone has said, you can take two tom cats, tie their tails together and hang them over a clothes line.  You have union, but you don’t have unity.] 

d.      Unity is Doctrinal and it is Spiritual . 

2.      [We have Unity in Diversity - God made us one, but He also made us different.] 

[Romans 16:17 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. ]

a.       [This is not different kinds of beliefs, we all hold to the same seven beliefs that are the ground of our unity.] 

b.      [This is a reference to different kinds of gifts.  God gave us all different empowerments and abilities.] 

c.       [What would happen if every member of our Church were to discover and use their spiritual gifts?  Spiritual gifts are not for your ecstasy, it is not a toy it is a tool.] 

d.      [Sameness is not unity.  Unity comes from diversity.  When we recognize that others have gifts we need and don’t have we will find unity based on our need.] 

e.       [In unity we have different tastes.  Not everyone likes liver, some people love it, some people hate it, that’s fine.  Not everyone likes the same kind of music, that’s fine, but we can still have unity.] 

C.     The Goal of our Maturity (vs 13) [– Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:”] 

1.      Stature comes with Maturity [– When you grow up you develop stature, you become fit for use.  Stature is the measure of who you are.  Who do you measure yourself against?] 

a.       [Peace comes with unity, diversity, and maturity -  “. . . the unity of the faith . . .” Children squabble and fight, adults learn to live together.  Bickering comes from immaturity.] 

b.      [Who are we o measure our maturity against?  - “. . . unto the measure of the stature of the ullness of Christ:” – We are not to measure ourselves against some other Christian but against Jesus Christ.] 

c.       [If you want to know whether or not you are spiritually mature, then compare yourself to the Lord Jesus Christ.] 

2.      Stability comes with maturity (vs 14) [– That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;” ] 

a.       [Get your feet on the rock.  Know what you believe, stand on the Word of God.] 

3.      Speech comes with Maturity (vs 15) [– But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:”] 

a.       [We are not to speak truthless love, or loveless truth.] 

1)      [Truth without love is brutality.  The Bible is a wonderful sword, but a poor club.  Don’t be a Bible bully.  Speak the truth in love.] 

2)      [Love without truth is hypocrisy.  Don’t ever jettison the truth for the sake of love.] 

4.      Service comes with maturity (vs 16) [– “From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.” ] 

a.       [This is one Christian helping other Christians in harmony.] 

b.      [We have joints.  The Greek word for joint is the word we get our English word harmony.  The joints in our body allow the parts of our body to work together.] 

c.       [If my service in the Lord makes your service difficult them something is wrong.  We will then be a handicapped body.  We need to work together in harmony.] 

 


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