Attaining the Unity of the Faith

 

Eph. 4
11  And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers,
12  for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ;
13  until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ.
14  As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming;
15  but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ,
16  from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.

 There has been much emphasis in recent years concerning the ministries listed in verse 11, especially apostles and prophets, which are called the foundation upon which God’s house is built, with Christ Jesus Himself being the chief cornerstone (Eph. 2:20). In the days opening before us, these ministries give way to higher expressions of the kingdom of God. The soulish, religious realm has taken the titles of apostle and prophet and parlayed them into uncountable opportunities to build personal kingdoms and control God’s sheep. Thus, God is deemphasizing these ministries as they have come to be recognized. However, the authority associated with true apostles and prophets is not being deemphasized, only the name tags and titles of Adamic prestige. God is opening gates into Zion for His people to enter through. He is establishing Christ’s spiritual priesthood in a people that they might faithfully bring His people into the “Promised Land.” The spiritual Promised Land, like the literal land given to Abraham, is a realm where God becomes to us all that He has promised. We want to examine the above passages because they define this spiritual Promised Land we are to enter.

It’s important to understand that all the verses we are going to examine are opened to us through the authority of Christ as it is manifested in true shepherds after His own heart (Jer. 3:14-15). These shepherds are without title or position. They come in His name to open the streams of living water to as many who are thirsty. This is important to understand because we do not just wander into green pastures of fulfillment on our own. We are led into them. Let’s take a look at verse 13.

13  until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ.

The unity of the faith is something that is talked about a lot in certain Christian circles. There are countless books written about the need to “come into unity.” But notice carefully how the verse is worded. “Until we ATTAIN to the unity of the faith…” The unity of the faith is already established. It is just a matter of “attaining” to it. How is this done? It is done through rising in the Spirit until we are abiding in a conscious awareness of the mystical body of Christ. The true body of Christ exists in a spiritual realm, and that is where it functions. It is not obvious to the religious eye. While the religious realm is busy “building unity,” the true body of Christ functions.

Heb. 12
22  But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels,
23  to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect,

Mount Zion is forever established. It remains for us to rise into her and behold her glory in Christ. When we enter this realm, we become eternally part of it. This is where we become members of one another. This is where individuality gives way to oneness. Listen to how Rotherham translates verse 13.

Until we all advance––into the oneness of the faith, and the personal knowledge of the Son of God, into a man of full–growth, into the measure of the stature of the fulness of the Christ;”

“Until we all advance into the oneness of the faith” nails it perfectly. Jude says it like this:

3 ¶  Beloved, while I was making every effort to write you about our common salvation, I felt the necessity to write to you appealing that you contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all handed down to the saints.

“The faith” has once for all been handed down to the saints. It is a done deal. We are to contend earnestly for it. Verse 13 of Eph. 4 continues: “and the personal knowledge of the Son of God, into a man of full–growth, into the measure of the stature of the fulness of the Christ.” The personal knowledge of the son of God differs greatly from the religious realm’s perception of Him. We are to see Christ as He is, stripped of all the religious trappings the soulish realm has attached to Him.

These passages in Ephesians are speaking about the true body of Christ. The body of Christ abides in a perpetual state of oneness with the Lord and each other. It is the body as a whole that attains to the fullness of Christ. It is not about individual fulfillment. False ministries, regardless of their name tags, will emphasize individual achievement and fulfillment every time. This goes to the root of the Adamic nature. It appeals to the individuality inherent in Adam. Can we discern the difference? In Adam, everything is about “me,” an individual. In Christ, everything is about “us,” the collective body of Christ.

 

 

2 thoughts on “Attaining the Unity of the Faith

  1. There are to ways mentioned in this post, one is of a lesser realm, and the other is through the realm of Zion. When we weigh these two, it’s very clear which is better. And better is always…better.

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