“I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought.” (I Coriinthians 1:10 NIV).
This appeal from Paul to all church leaders–was in response to those who thought they had a claim of superiority over others–simply because of who the leader was. For whatever reason–then as now–people tend to think that if they belong to a certain church or denomination that they have bragging rights and feel superior to any other Believers.
The truth of the matter is–if ALL claim to be Believers in the Work on the Cross, in salvation, repentance, spreading The Word and LIVING according to The Word–then NONE are superior or inferior. ALL are equal in the sight of God since He has no respect of persons.
People who have worship services on Sunday have no more access to God than those who have worship services on Saturday or any other day of the week–we all have equal access to God through the Son, Jesus Christ.
How a person is baptized is a matter between them and God, but if we look at the Scriptures and desire to be like Christ, who was submerged when baptized, then we would have to know, submersion is the acceptable baptismal method. But this is not to argue, sprinkling or submersion–the act of baptism is supposed to symbolic of our “being buried with Him (to sin), and rising again (to live for Him)” to do the good works He said we would do. If we cannot do the works–ignited by love–for God and others–our baptism means nothing.
I can perfectly understand Paul’s response to the church at Corinth–it doesn’t matter who does the baptism or under what banner–it is the BAPTISM itself that matters–not who did it. If a person’s heart is not right–it won’t matter who does the baptizing. Some have gone into the water a dry devil and come up a wet one–there is no change of heart and so there can be no change of action.
Since none–but Jesus–has ever died for us–why do we pay so much attention to people in leadership positions? They have no heaven or hell for us. Their opinion of us–matters not–especially those who simply love to have authority over others, but have no relationship with God and it is evident in how they conduct themselves in their various churches. Having authority over people does not make them gods–it usually means God’s favor–but more often it means, someone has erred in judgment by putting a godless person over others. We know this happens because we see the results every day when they are reported in the media. Why can’t we choose leaders by praying until God shows us who is to lead?
Okay, that’s a topic by itself and I will explore it, but the important thing for all BELIEVERS is that we are saying what God says–in total agreement–without any division. When the Body of Christ (everyone who proclaims to be believe in Him) unites in thought, purpose and deed, we will indeed change the world for the better.
Until then, let’s not get caught up in people–who lead–but in the Leader we follow–Jesus Christ and learn to be united for the cause–encouraging everyone to live according to The Word of God!