Christian unity is not achieved by accident. It is achieved with diligence, purpose and commitment. The inspired apostle declared, “Being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (Eph 4:3 NAS).

Often the question is asked, “How can unity of God’s people be obtained and secured?” The Bible is the answer. Never has God’s word caused division! People are not divided over what the Bible teaches. They are divided over what the Bible does not teach; or by ignoring, or violating what the Bible does teach.

There is a way for unity; a way so right that it cannot be wrong; that is God’s word and God’s way. This way that cannot be wrong is found in Ephesians. “{There is} one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all” (Eph 4:4-6 NAS). This is God’s inspired master plan for unity. If we will accept it, unity will prevail. If man continues to institute his own opinions, traditions and dogmas, rather than accept God’s authority, His word, religious divisions will continue to prevail and war against God’s divine plan for unity.

One Body – One Church – Unity in Organization

Paul first said, there is “one body” which is, Christ’s church. “And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all” (Eph 1:22-23 NAS). Paul also said that, “…. Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself {being} the Savior of the body” (Eph 5:23 NAS). In New Testament times there was but one church for all of God’s people in Christ Jesus. Just as there was but one church in New Testament times there should be only one church today.

One Spirit – Unity in Life

The second thing Paul emphasized is that there is but “one Spirit,” who is the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Godhead, who gave to the world unity and reliability of revelation. “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come” (John 16:13 NAS). The complete, inerrant revelation of divine truth, by the Holy Spirit, through the apostles, leaves no room for later day revelations, whether by ancient or modern day pretenders. We are warned against false teachers (Matt. 7:15; I Jno. 4:1).

One Hope – Unity in Desire

This “one hope” is unity of desire and expectation! That “one hope” is predicated upon man’s obedience to the will of God. Jesus said, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven; but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven. Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles? And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness” (Matt 7:21-23 NAS).

One Lord – Unity in Authority

Jesus Christ is the “one Lord.” He “is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords” (I Tim. 6:15). This is unity in authority – absolute authority! Jesus, our Lord, Himself, declared that, “All authority hath been given unto me in heaven and on earth” (Matt. 28:18). This leaves no religious authority for any man or group of men on earth; whether pope, priest, preacher, rabbi, synod, council, tradition, public opinion, experiences, or subjective feelings – none constitute God’s authority in religion for man. Truly Jesus Christ is the “one Lord,” (ruler) the only Lord of heaven and earth. That means unity of authority with no appeal.

One Faith – Unity in Message

God does not recognize a multiplicity of faiths – only “one faith.” Paul wrote of the, “word of faith, which we preach” (Rom. 10:8). Paul referred to the divine system of faith, the “one faith,” as the “law of faith” (Rom. 3:27). The “law of faith” is the series of commands and ordinances, dictated and legislated by the omnipotent power of almighty God. The concept of “many faiths” of religion is completely false and contrary to the word of God. There is unity only in the “one faith.”

One Baptism – Unity in Practice

Water baptism is the “one baptism,” of the inspired text. This “one baptism” is to be “baptized into Christ”; to be “buried therefore with him through baptism into death” (Rom. 6:3-4). Paul wrote, “For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ” (Gal 3:27 NAS).

One God – Unity in Worship

The Bible concept of God is that the entirety of God, that is, the Godhead is one in all of its aspects (Acts 17:29; Rom. 1:20; Col. 2:9). The Godhead consists of three persons and has been manifested in three persons: (1) God, the Father, (Jno. 6:27, 46; Eph. 6:4; 2 Cor. 11:31), (2) God, the Son (Jno. 10:30-38); Isa. 9:6; Jno. 20:28; Rom. 9:5), (3) God, the Holy Spirit (Acts 5:3-4; Rom. 8:9-11; I Tim. 3:16). Not only is the Godhead one in its nature, which would include its attributes and characteristics, but it is one in its actions. There is “one God,” who is “over all.” That is unity of worship.

These seven “ones,” are provided and defined as the cardinal doctrine for unity of all believers by Jehovah God. If one does not agree, then someone does not agree with the divine authority of God, revealed in these seven, authoritative cardinal tenets of faith for Christian unity. Let there be unity and peace! This is the unity we plead for.