“Only let your conversation be as it becomes the Gospel of Christ—that whether I come and see you or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind, striving together for the faith of the Gospel.”

Philippians 1:27

In God’s Kingdom Work the adage is true:  “United we stand; divided we fall.”

The Bible is clear when it says division and confusion are of the devil (I Cor. 14:33).  And, quite often we blame him for it, when, in reality, it’s became we’re acting like him and operating “according to the flesh” (I Cor. 1:10-13; 3:1-4; Eph. 2:1-3; James 3:16).

Today’s Manna reminds us of the importance of “standing fast in one spirit and one mind as we strive together for the faith of the Gospel.”  The Greek word “steko” is used for “stand fast” and also means “to remain stationary, immovable, persevere, abide upon, staunch resistance, be established on, etc.,” while “sunathleo” is used for “striving together” and basically means “to wrestle in company with, to seek jointly, labor together with, contend with, etc.”

Truly, it’s the picture of “teamwork” in which all team members are working together as one.  It’s a picture of a team of mules, horses, oxen, etc., pulling a load together. . .or a team of rowers in a boat simultaneously pulling the oars through the water together in unity. . .or an athletic team advancing the ball toward the goal as a single unit.

And, Paul reminds them their motivation for doing so is not him.

It’s Christ and the furtherance of His Gospel.

Should not the same be true today?

Assuredly it should.

That’s why God’s Kingdom Work cannot be centered upon any personality other than Jesus, the Risen Lord.  That’s why no church can move forward when there’s friction in the fellowship or differing views on how to do things.

God has given us His inspired Word to instruct us and His Holy Spirit to guide us.  When Christ’s mind indwells and enlightens us (Phil. 2:5), there’ll be unity.  And, there’ll be a “standing firm” upon the Word of God and a “striving together” for the Cause of Christ.

Woe to any church or denomination that adopts the philosophies and/or practices of man as their “modus operandi.”  Such tactics may build large numbers, but they will not build the Kingdom of God.  We must never stray from “Jesus Christ and Him crucified” (I Cor. 1:17-2:5), for so doing will ensure one’s decline and demise.

Is your “conversation (lifestyle, character, conduct, etc.) becoming to the Gospel of Christ?”  When others watch you. . .or hear you talk. . .are they drawn closer to Jesus or driven further way?  In this day-and-age of “anything goes” we must “stand fast” and “strive together;” otherwise, we will have forfeited our calling and trodden underfoot the precious Blood of the One by Whose Name we are called (Heb. 6:6-8).

By Tom Smith Morning Manna November 21, 2009

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