Endeavoring to keep the unity—
What you do not have, you cannot lose
“Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit
in the bond of peace.” —Ephesians 4:3
banded together and bound themselves under an oath till they had killed Paul —Act.23:12
Their binding tie was a common hatred for Paul. Pharisees even joined Sadducees (Matthew 16:1) or plotted with the Herodians (Mark.3:6) —against Jesus. Some brethren have strong crisis ties —when faced by an adversary. Peace seems to prevail. They seem close to each other —little bickering. But the crisis passes; the tie dissolves; —they devour one another!
“Ties that bind” are brotherly ties—”Love the brotherhood“(1Peter 2:17); “Love as brothers“(1Peter 3:8). Such ties are evidenced by sacrifice —as brethren would have “plucked out their eyes” for Paul (Galatians 4:16). See Paul’s response to brethren:
I will very gladly spend and be spent for you —2 Corinthians 12:15
—or Jerusalem saints: “all who were possessors of land or houses sold them” (Acts 4:34) and no brother was needy. Earnest concern a tie that binds.
The “tie that binds” is rooted in truth. “…endeavoring to keep the unity of Spirit in the bond of peace” is followed by—
“There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all —Ephesians 4:4-6
This it is not just informative —a doctrinal statement. It, rather, states seven basics common to all Christians. Every Christian bows to the same Lord, worships the same Father, was baptized alike into Christ, has the same hope. No Christians are void of these basics. These are “ties” in truth, but holding them in common is a “tie that binds” Christians together.
Attitudes are a “tie that binds.” Preceding “endeavoring to keep the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace,” Paul defined the “walk worthy of the calling” as “with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love” —Ephesians 4:2. That “tie that binds” is woven with threads of “longsuffering,” (putting up with difficult people) and mixed with threads of “bearing with one another” (sharing a load) and tempered with threads of “gentleness and lowliness”(opposite of a proud mind). This binding cord has a core of “love ” (esteeming people a treasure, a prize). Such threads make a mighty strong “tie!”
Bible Comments, 23, a publication by Joe Fitch originally intended for distribution among small congregations in Texas.
Used here by kind permission.