THE SERVANT GENERAL
OUR THEME FOR 2017
UNITY IN THE SPIRIT
May 19, 2017
Today’s reading: Acts 15:22-31
The early Church was beset by her own challenges. There were
Christian missionaries not mandated by the top leadership
that upset Christian communities with their teachings and
thus disturbed their peace of mind (v.24). So the apostles
and presbyters sent them a letter that said, “It is
the decision of the holy Spirit and of us ....” (v.28a).
Such boldness and confidence in claiming the stamp of approval
by the Holy Spirit. How could the top leadership of the early
Church claim such?
because they were united. They were of “one accord”
(v.25a). They were prayerful and Spirit-filled servant leaders
who agreed on the course of action. They conducted their discussion
with fraternal love and pastoral concern for the flock. They
were united as the top leadership of the Church, discussing
the problem together and making the decision together. “Then
the apostles and presbyters, in agreement with the whole church,
decided to choose representatives and to send them to Antioch
with Paul and Barnabas.” (v.22a).
that a favorite and very successful work of the enemy is division
within the Christian body. Thus the top leadership should
strive hard for unity of mind and heart. In turn, those under
them should respect and be submitted to their authority and
because they were living their lives in Christ. They had “dedicated
their lives to the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (v.26).
They were dedicated servants, centered on Christ, who only
looked to the interests of Christ. They did everything in
his name, that is, in accordance with his will and his ways.
They prayed and they meditated on the scriptures and the words
of Jesus, and they knew and lived out the authentic gospel
as taught by their Master and Lord.
proof that their bold claim was true was in the fruit of their
message to the Antioch community. “When the people read
it, they were delighted with the exhortation.” (v.31).
Indeed the Holy Spirit had spoken through His chosen instruments.