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Mornings In The College Chapel by Francis Greenwood Peabody

XVII CHRISTIAN UNITY

Ephesians iv.13.

We hear much in these days of Christian unity, and many programmes and platforms and propositions are presented to us, as though religious unity were a thing to be constructed and put together like a building, which should be big enough to hold us all. But in this splendid chapter religious unity is regarded by the apostle, not as a thing which is to be made, but as a thing which is to grow. |There is,| he says |one body and one spirit; there is a unity of the faith. But we do not make this unity; we grow up into it as we attain unto a full-grown man; we attain unto it as a boy becomes a man, not by discussing his growth, or by worrying because he is not a man, or by bragging that he is bigger than other boys, but simply by growing up. Thus, as people grow up into Christ, they grow up into unity. The unity comes not of the assent of man to certain propositions, but of the ascent of man to {48} the stature of Christ. And so what hinders unity is that we have not got our spiritual growth. It takes a full-grown mind to reach it. It takes a full-grown heart to feel it. The unity is always waiting at the top. Religious progress is like the ascent of a hill from various sides. Below there is division, obstructive underbrush, perplexity; but as the top is neared there is ever a closer approach of man to man; and at the summit there is the same view for all, and that view is a view all round. The climbers attain to the measure of the stature of Christ, and they attain at the same time to the unity of the faith.

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