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Vibrant: Unity

Philippians 4:1-5

Philippians 4:2 finds Paul pleading with Euodia and Syntyche to be of the same mind in the Lord. These two women, who were instrumental in establishing the Philippian church, had apparently had some sort of discord and division come between them.

In team meetings in businesses, members are often charged with the task of coming to a consensus in decisions. This means coming to an agreement everyone actively supports, or at least can live with. Consensus does not happen with a vote, where the majority rules. It does not happen with compromise, where one or more persons adjust their principles. Consensus definitely does not happen when someone insists on their way and is unwilling to listen to the others’ views. Business decisions built on majority rules, compromise, or dictatorship may as well not have a team.

Synonyms for consensus are harmony, unity, accord, oneness. This is what Paul wanted for his team. To be in unity is to be one in Christ. Now, we don’t know what Euodia’s and Syntyche’s disagreement was about. Perhaps it was something big, like one betraying the other’s confidence. Perhaps it was something small, such as what color the tablecloth should be for the church picnic. However big or small it was, our God is bigger. He would not want them to become divided over a disagreement, big or small. He wants harmony for his team.

Coming to a consensus requires having a common goal, then commitment, and trust. Our common goal is to be of the same mind in the Lord. The same can be said of commitment and trust.

For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility. Ephesians 2:14

Questions:

  1. If you are currently in disagreement with someone, is it a big problem or a small problem? Is it worth risking unity in Christ?
  2. Do you have to like someone in order to be in harmony with them? Do you think Jesus liked everyone he gave grace to?