Over the years there have been many unspoken conversations in my mind. Recently I’ve had conversations with people that afterward I keep mulling over, rehashing what was said in an effort do identify what bothered me about that conversation.
One topic happened to be about church closures during the most restrictive part of the Covid-19 ado, which seems to still be lingering. In relating a story in which church closure was part of the cause of an incident that occurred the person I was talking to expressed disagreement with church closures on constitutional grounds. That is all fine and good, but, that was not the point I was making at the time. What had happened within that church resulted in a number of people leaving and the congregation was reduced in size such that the minister believed they could no longer support a full time minister and he resigned.
After many days of contemplating the conversation I came to the conclusion that the person I was talking to did not realize that part of the enemy’s tactic, that is Satan the evil one, is to create division among believers. The government’s forced closures of businesses, churches, synagogues, mosques, schools, etc… was cause for much disagreement among the nations citizens. This is exactly the kind of thing that Satan puts into the minds of people who unwittingly become the pawns of he who “prowls about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour.”(1)
Congregations of Christians are not immune to the enemies devises. Whether a congregation chose to close as state governors imposed lock-downs or chose to protest by remaining open and risk the penalties imposed is not relevant to the discussion. What is relevant is the two opposing reactions has caused division among believers and that is exactly what the devil wants.
As I ruminated over the conversation many things popped into my head. Rehearsing potential conversations pointing out that believers allowed themselves to be divided. This should not be. Jesus himself prayed for unity among believers that they would be one just as he and the father are one. Unity, being one, does not mean we all have to have the exact same understanding of everything pertaining to scripture. I believe it means that we are to be one in our unwavering faith in the God of creation and His Son, our Saviour, the Messiah that came and died on the cross as the ultimate sacrifice for the sins of the whole world, that God raised him from the dead on the third day conquering both sin and death. This so all who confess Jesus as Lord of their life and believe in their heart that God raised him from the dead have eternal life. All the rest is teaching doctrine and each individual understands as the Holy Spirit gives understanding. So, when a congregation allows the evil one to place a wedge between the members they are not being alert to the workings of the devil in the church. This fact is disturbing.
Why is it disturbing? Well, some time ago I drafted another blog that I never posted. It covers that subject. Jesus asked if he would find faith when he returns.(2) There will be some who have a deep abiding faith when he returns, but I’d say that kind of faith will be relatively rare by then, whenever that may be. I may finish that faith blog and post it as well. After all, the subject of faith doesn’t go stale. The point is, without pure, abiding faith, groups of believers can be deceived creating dissent and division where there ought to be unity and unwavering faith. Jesus warned his disciples, and therefore us, to be careful that we are not deceived. He was talking about the false Christs and false prophets that will arise in the last days. Still, believers need to keep their spiritual eyes open for the things that the devil and his minions place in their path to divide and conquer and weaken faith in God and his Christ, Jesus our Savior.
That off my mind I encourage all believers to stay vigilant to avoid divisions within the body of Christ. Blessings to all.
Notes: (1) Reference 1 Peter 5:8
(2) Reference Luke 18:8