Unity and the Church

All churches experience conflict. Vintage Church (a recent book by Mark Driscoll and Gerry Breshears) offers helpful insight about the premium of pursuing unity in the midst of conflict:

Every church and every church leader knows the painful cost they must pay when there is disunity. While a lack of unity does not always rise to the level of betrayal that Judas demonstrated, every breach in unity costs the leaders time, energy, emotion, and momentum. Division is often the cause of the greatest stress, pain, conflict, and despair in any church….Theologically, unity is to be pursued by churches and among churches for five reasons. (1) Jesus prayed for it often. (2) As the leadership goes, so goes the rest of the church. (3) Without unity spiritual health and growth cannot be maintained because the church gets diverted from Jesus and his mission for them. (4) Unity is fragile because it is gained slowly and lost quickly which requires that it never be assumed or taken for granted. (5) Paul repeatedly comands unity in churches.

May God grant such unity among church leaders and the people they shepherd amidst a skeptical and watching world.