Unity is important, but it's not the most important. (A-Z Blogging Challenge)

In college, I learned about the history of my (non) denomination. The Restoration Movement (not a denomination) consists of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), independent Christian churches, and the Churches of Christ.

In the earliest days of the movement, when there was only one group, the purpose was to unite the universal church.  No divisions.  But as time passed, some of them realized that it was impossible to have complete unity as well as stand firm on the truth.

The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) decided that unity was the most important, and they began to let slide small issues and big issues.  Important beliefs like the divinity of Christ were set aside for the sake of being unified.

On the other hand, the Churches of Christ took a stand for instruments in church and other issues that have since been forgotten except by those who study history.

And the independent Christian churches found themselves in the middle of their two cousins, all three of them worse for wear.

In recent years, many of the independent Christian Churches and Churches of Christ have been working toward reconciliation, agreeing to disagree in most cases, but with the realization that these issues are not issues of salvation.  We can consider the other as faithful believers without insisting they agree with us on every point.

On the other hand, I don't expect a wide reconciliation with the majority of the Disciples of Christ churches because they have stepped so far out of line.  They have set aside essentials.

I think that the Restoration Movement is a fantastic picture (though a sad one) of the importance of unity alongside the realization that complete unity cannot exist next to faithfulness to the Bible.  One other the other has to give.

"In matters of faith, unity; in matters of opinion, liberty; in all things charity."  St. Augustine (or Rupertus Meldeniu, or Marco Antonio de Dominis depending on who you ask)

"Truth first, union afterward; and union only in truth." David Lipscomb

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