Reading Acts 14-18 this week. Here is a reflection from Acts 15!
Should Christians be circumcised or not? Hmm…I have an idea…Let’s fight about it!!!
By the time we get to Acts 15, the gospel was spreading among all world. The gentiles (non-jews) were experiencing God and finding their hope and salvation through Jesus. But the Jewish community was trying to convince the rest of the world to be just like them…
But the Church came together and made an agreement not to burden the new Christians with a whole bunch of rules and expectations right off the bat.
So as the church grew, more and more people started coming and getting involved, and the people of God became a very diverse group of people. This is when trouble ensued. Everyone is so different, so they have differences in opinions, different preferences and diverse beliefs and personalities. All of these “differences” caused tension among the church.
People were allowing small differences of opinion to divide them, and they hoped the leaders of the church would pick a side, but nobody did. Nobody picked a side.
“We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved, just as they are” (Acts 15:11).
Oasis church is no different than the church in Acts. We must be aware of the potential for division springing up because our different backgrounds, traditions, and preferences. Yes, we are all different, but ONE thing that is the same about all of us is that we have experienced salvation by grace through faith in Christ. We are united under ONE vision, “so that people can have new life in Christ.”
WE are ALL part of the body of Christ AND we each have a role to play. If we can learn to celebrate our differences, while focusing on our vision, we will reach people faster. Let’s be mindful that division in the church is like CANCER to the body.
And, WE are ONE body.