Revised and re-posted from a year ago, the following blog entry on the Verse of the Day for January 12, 2016 focuses on the Church, the Body of Christ, which is described in Galatians 3:26-28 in the New Living Testament:
For you are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus. And all who have been united with Christ in baptism have put on Christ, like putting on new clothes. There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male and female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus.
God is very concerned about diversity, not only in nature and in other features of the universe but in every aspect of life, particularly among people. Acts 17:26 also makes known that God “. . . hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; Holman Christian Standard renders the verse this way:
From one man He has made every nationality to live over the whole earth and has determined their appointed times and the boundaries of where they live.
When the Church emerged as a new entity on the Day of Pentecost, God provided an amazing display of diversity. When those who waited for the promise of the Father that Jesus Christ spoke of as he departed to heaven, there was an amazing gathering of individuals who came to celebrate the Feast of Pentecost:
Now there were then residing in Jerusalem Jews, devout and God-fearing men from every country under heaven (Acts 2:5).
Although God demonstrates diversity in all of His creation, He also desires a demonstration of unity within that diversity. The Church, the collective body of believers, all those who have confessed Jesus Christ as Lord and who endeavor live out the precepts and principles of their faith also provide an illustration of unity within diversity. One of the terms used to describe this example of diversity is “the mystery,” a metaphor used to describe the union of Jew and Gentile into one new man, the Body of Jesus Christ, the quintessential example of unity within diversity.
Paul speaks of “the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27). Paul was the first to receive an understanding of this concept which was later more fully revealed in Ephesians and elsewhere in the Scriptures. As believers we endeavor to synchronize our desire to comprehend to a greater degree the mystery of the one body with God’s desire to show teach us, as expressed in this poem:
Oh, To See the Mystery
Enlighten our eyes that we might openly see;
Expand our minds and widen our comprehension
To understand the temple of the mystery.
Teach us to fully comprehend each dimension
And ascertain the magnitude without measure:
Reveal to us the true length,
though it is endless;
Teach us to find the full breadth,
though it is boundless;
Help us to reach the vast height,
though it is measureless;
Teach us to probe the great depth,
though it is fathomless.
Show us your divine design for the inner man.
Make plain the purpose, the pattern, the symmetry
Unfolded in the blueprints of your master plan
For the One Body, temple of awesome beauty.
Share with us the value of this priceless treasure,
Held in the secret places of your good pleasure.
Show us the riches of the glory of this mystery
Which is Christ in each of us, the hope of glory.
The Church is the ultimate expression of oneness or unity of purpose, of unity within diversity.
Frontline Music offers Galatians Meditations that focus on Galatians 3:24-28