What is Christian Unity?
Christian unity is that unique grace of the Holy Spirit which brings diverse people groups, ethnicities, geographies, personalities, backgrounds and life stories together in celebration and single-minded devotion to the love and gospel of Jesus Christ and demonstrating its life-changing power to a watching world.
Our unity is grounded in our understanding of the Kingdom of God. N.T. Wright grounds an understanding of the Kingdom of God in an understanding of the nature of Christ and his triumph over every prince and power and principality both on the earth and under the earth. He poses the question this way:
[The Gospel writers] themselves, in telling the story of how God became king in and through Jesus, invite their readers to the imaginative leap of saying, ‘Suppose this is how God has done it? Suppose the world’s way of empire is all wrong? Suppose there’s a different way, and suppose that Jesus, in his life, death and resurrection, has brought it about?’
We call that way and that reign of Christ in the life of the believer the Kingdom of God. More traditionally this is known as sanctification in the life of the Christian. Sanctification is where we grow into ever deeper understanding of the Kingdom of God, where Christ alone reigns and rules in the life and affections of those who call upon his name
The extension of the heavenly realm into the earthly within the life and circumstances of the believer and by implication the broader world. (click here for more of N.T. Wright’s work). The Kingdom of God knows no limitation and is imparted to the life of every Christian.
If we are already in some sense part of the Kingdom of God by virtue of a dependent faith in Jesus Christ being our Lord and Savior. The main goal of ecumenism is to than see Christ in the other and over time trust other parts of the body of Christ.
From this relational connection flows all the important work. Both the working out of theological understanding and difference (formal ecumenism) that can bring about the fruits of joint communion, increased relations, and joint works. To the missional ecumenism that should animate our outreach to non-believers, the healing of injustices and prejudices between Christians, and the varied expressions of Christ’s nature as embodied in our works of justice, compassion, and mercy.
Kingdom Mission Society (KMS) seeks to equip and train Christians of all backgrounds, but especially Evangelicals and Pentecostals, in both formal and missional ecumenism. KMS therefore produces resources that help ground all of our work within the context of historic Christian understandings (whether Roman Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox, or Churches of the East), thereby, helping to orient Christians to a framework of engaging in the present. These going deeper resources help safeguard why and how Christians should engage in certain public works.
KMS also tries to provide practical ways that Christians of different backgrounds can pray, study, and take action together. We know that such practical experiences are necessary for any greater works of unity to take root. This forms the basis of our societies. To learn more (click here).