Joining Together

Joining Together

Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

Hebrews 10:25

suggested further reading: John 17

We may gather from this passage a general teaching that evil prevails everywhere among mankind. One evil is that everyone sets himself above others. Another is that those who seem to excel in anything cannot tolerate inferiors to be equal with themselves. There is so much ill temper in almost all of us that individuals would gladly make churches for themselves, if they could, for they find it difficult to accommodate themselves to the ways and habits of others.

The rich envy one another, and hardly one in a hundred can be found among them who will allow the poor to be called brothers. Unless similarity of habits or some allurements or advantages draw us together, we find it very difficult to maintain continual concord among ourselves.

What we all extremely need to hear, therefore, is the admonition to love and not to envy. We should not separate ourselves from those to whom God has joined us but embrace with brotherly kindness all who are united to us in faith. Surely it behooves us even more earnestly to cultivate unity, since the goal of the more eagerly watchful Satan is either to tear us by any means from the church or stealthily to seduce us from it.

The effect would be happy if no one were to please himself too much, we preserved the one object of mutually provoking one another to love, and we allowed no emulation among ourselves but that of doing good works. For doubtless the contempt of the brethren, moroseness, envy, immoderate estimate of self, and other sinful impulses clearly show that our love is either very cold or does not exist at all.

for meditation: The multiplication of denominations since the time of the Reformation validates Calvin’s observations. Many of us find it very difficult to humble ourselves and take a servant role in church. We dispute and cause divisions and split the body of Christ, each thinking ours is the only way. We should rather thank God for the command to join together, without which we would probably have many more divisions than we already do.

 Calvin, J., & Beeke, J. R. (2008).

365 Days with Calvin

(p. 287). Leominster; Grand Rapids, MI: Day One Publications; Reformation Heritage Books.