Oneness is a common theme throughout scripture. Nehemiah 8:1 “All the people came together as one in the square before the Water Gate. They told Ezra the teacher of the Law to bring out the Book of the Law of Moses, which the Lord had commanded for Israel.” When Israel was dealing with the tribe of Benjamin for their grievous sin, Judges 20:1 “Then all Israel from Dan to Beersheba and from the land of Gilead came together as one and assembled before the Lord in Mizpah.” Judges 20:8 “All the men rose up together as one, saying, “None of us will go home. No, not one of us will return to his house. 11 So all the Israelites got together and united as one against the city.” 1 Samuel 11:7 “Then the terror of the Lord fell on the people, and they came out together as one.” Ezra 3:1 “When the seventh month came and the Israelites had settled in their towns, the people assembled together as one in Jerusalem.” Paul says Philippians 1:27 “Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Then, whether I come and see you or only hear about you in my absence, I will know that you stand firm in the one Spirit, striving together as one for the faith of the gospel.”
We then see how the sin of one affected the community when Israel was defeated by Ai. Joshua 7:10 “The Lord said to Joshua, “Stand up! What are you doing down on your face? 11 Israel has sinned; they have violated my covenant, which I commanded them to keep. They have taken some of the devoted things; they have stolen, they have lied, they have put them with their own possessions. 12 That is why the Israelites cannot stand against their enemies; they turn their backs and run because they have been made liable to destruction. I will not be with you anymore unless you destroy whatever among you is devoted to destruction.” Once Achan was found out 25 Joshua said, “Why have you brought this trouble on us? The Lord will bring trouble on you today.” When Adam sinned he brought sin upon the world. Paul said Romans 5:12 “Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people.” 17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ! 18 Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous. 20 The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, 21 so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Jesus is the fulfillment of the promise to Abraham. Hebrews 11:8 “By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. 9 By faith he made his home in the Promised Land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. 10 For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God. 11 And by faith even Sarah, who was past childbearing age, was enabled to bear children because she considered him faithful who had made the promise. 12 And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore.” Acts 13:22 “After removing Saul, he made David their king. God testified concerning him: ‘I have found David son of Jesse, a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.’ 23 “From this man’s descendants God has brought to Israel the Savior Jesus, as he promised. 24 Before the coming of Jesus, John preached repentance and baptism to all the people of Israel. 25 As John was completing his work, he said: ‘Who do you suppose I am? I am not the one you are looking for. But there is one coming after me whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.’ 26 “Fellow children of Abraham and you God-fearing Gentiles, it is to us that this message of salvation has been sent. 27 The people of Jerusalem and their rulers did not recognize Jesus, yet in condemning him they fulfilled the words of the prophets that are read every Sabbath. 28 Though they found no proper ground for a death sentence, they asked Pilate to have him executed. 29 When they had carried out all that was written about him, they took him down from the cross and laid him in a tomb. 30 But God raised him from the dead, 31 and for many days he was seen by those who had traveled with him from Galilee to Jerusalem. They are now his witnesses to our people. 32 “We tell you the good news: What God promised our ancestors 33 he has fulfilled for us, their children, by raising up Jesus.”
We are part of that promise to Abraham in Jesus. John 14:6 “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Matthew 10:24 “The student is not above the teacher, nor a servant above his master.” Luke 6:40 “The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher.” 37 “Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. Matthew continues 38 “Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it. 40 “Anyone who welcomes you welcomes me, and anyone who welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me.” We are supposed to be like Jesus but the only way this can happen is for us to be filled with the Holy Spirit just as He was. Luke 3:21 “When all the people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. And as he was praying, heaven was opened 22 and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” Acts 2:4 “All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.” Acts 4:31 “After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.” Acts 13:52 “And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.” The disciples were told Luke 24:48 “You are witnesses of these things. 49 I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”
Oneness with Jesus means we are filled with the Holy Spirit. Being filled means we go out into all the world and continue His mission. Jesus came to destroy the work of the devil and we can’t do that without being filled. Jesus himself tells us we are to do what he did but in the same passage he talks about the Holy Spirit. John 14:11 “Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves. 12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. 15 “If you love me, keep my commands. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 19 Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. 20 On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. 21 Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.”
In today’s church oneness seems impossible with everyone going their own way and doing their own thing but with God anything is possible. When God turns His face back to shining on us anything can happen. After talking to the wealthy man they said “Who then can be saved?” Matthew 19:26 “Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” In order to have oneness in Christ we must be willing to follow wholeheartedly. Are you willing to sell all you have and come follow? Will you stand as one to go against the sin of the church as Israel did Benjamin? Will you stand as one to hear the word of the Lord? Tomorrow we will continue with having the mind of Christ.