Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
October 11, 1951

The Bible A Book Of Unity

Jimmy Wood, Brownfield, Texas

Quiet often we talk to people who give the following excuse for the chaotic and divided condition of the religious world today. "The Bible is a hard book to understand, and we just can't all see it alike. You believe it the way you have been taught, and I believe it the way I have been taught. God is going to accept all religions anyway." This idea suggests that God has given us a guide in the religious world today that produces a multiplicity of churches, and that causes people to walk in a thousand different ways. This is not so, and we propose in this article to show why it is not so.

God has never been the author of confusion in the material or spiritual world. When he spoke the universe into existence, he created order and not chaos. Each of the heavenly bodies move in their own respective orbits, performing their own separate duties. We have day and night, the seasons of the year, the sunshine, and the rain ,all because God is the author of order and not of chaos. This is not only true of the universe, but it is also true of the body of man. The most nearly perfect machine that man has created has not been able to compare with God's sublimest creation, man. When God in the very dawn of creation made man, who was made a perfect individual. The members of the body of man were so designed and created to work in perfect unison in the sustenance of man. Not only is this true of man's body, but it is true of everything else that God has made. The natural laws of the universe give order instead of chaos. There is the law of gravity, that keeps the ocean in her beds, that keeps man on the earth, etc. There is the law of life insofar as plants are concerned. Everything that we know in the natural world is subject to the laws that God made in the beginning. One object is not under the law of gravitation, and another object exempt from it, all are subject to the same law.

Does it not sound reasonable then, that God who created order in the material universe, would create the same sort of order in the spiritual universe? Do you think God would create a solar system that was perfect in every respect, and then write a book that would cause men to walk in hundreds of different ways spiritually? Do you honestly believe that God, who would not exempt a single material thing from the law of gravity, would exempt a single individual from obeying the law of the spirit? Do you think that God, who created the body of man, and caused each member to depend on the other members, would create a spiritual body whose members would intentionally and deliberately do harm to each other? I believe that I know your answer to these questions without your telling me.

Common sense tells us that the word of God is a book of unity, and not of chaos, but let us look at the Bible and see what it has to say. From the very morning of time, God has expected his people to recognize Him as being "One God." Moses says in Deut. 6:4, "Hear 0 Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord." Israel turned many times to the gods of the heathen, but they were always punished for it. Most of us believe in the one God, and we believe also that there is only "One Christ." John 3:16 tells us that God loved man so much that he gave his only begotten son. Again nearly all religious people in our land believe that there is but one Christ. The holy trinity is not complete without the Holy Spirit, and again we notice the unity of God's book on his subject. Paul tells us that we have been all made to drink into the one spirit. I am sure that most of those who read this article will agree with these facts, that there is but one God, one Christ, and one Spirit.

The same book that tells us there is but one God, tells us also that God is responsible for but one church. "There is one body, and one Spirit even as ye are called in one hope of your calling." (Eph. 4:4) Colossians 1:18 tells us that the body and the church are the same. I have never been able to understand why men who believe the truth, and who believe that God is the creator of order, can believe that he has responsible for every one of the 250 different religious organizations that exist in America today. Neither can I understand why they use such phrases as these in their religious parlance today. "One church is just as good as another," "It doesn't matter which church you belong to," "God is responsible for all the religions bodies that exist today," etc., etc. There are just as many scriptures to prove that God approves of only one church, as there are to prove that he had only one Son, or sent only one Spirit. If the Bible is a book of Unity, then the church that it produces must be a United Church.

We do not believe that the Bible is responsible for ail the creeds, disciplines and manuals that churches use today either. Jesus said that he was "The way," and this of necessity excludes all other ways. There is but one way to obey God today, and that is through faith and obedience unto his word. Men must believe in the one gospel that was preached by the disciples of Christ in the long ago, and they must not accept any other. "Contend earnestly for the faith, which was once delivered unto the saints." (Jude 9) Paul tells us that the anathemas of heaven will rest upon those who preach not that gospel, or faith. (Gal. 1:8) When the gospel is preached it will produce the same obedience on the part of everyone that believes and accepts it. God's book is a book of unity and not of chaos.

Members of the church of Christ are often criticized for preaching so much on the subject of baptism. The Bible declares that there is but one baptism, (Eph. 4:5) and that this baptism requires water, that it is a burial, and that it is for the remission of sins. If preachers of the church of Christ did not preach on the subject of baptism it would not be preached on, for sectarian preachers seldom mention it today from the pulpit. God's word is not responsible for the different modes (?) of baptism that exist today in the religious world. This would make his word responsible for division. There are many ways to get into sectarian churches, but there is only one way to get into the church of the Lord. That is through obedience to his divine word, and by being added to his church. (Acts 2:41, 47)

In conclusion let us say that unless men accept the Bible there will always be religious division. When men accept the Bible it will produce Unity in the religions world. The one hope for the chaotic condition of denominationalism is the word of the living God. Let us accept it, obey it, and live by its precepts. Then, and then alone can we be one.