Sibling rivalry…

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John 17:11 And now I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one, as we are one.

So long as Jesus was present in person, his disciples mostly stayed together. But in truth there were divisions among them long before he left. They would regularly argue about who among them was the greatest, vying for choice positions in what they believed was the coming reign of King Jesus.

It was not to be.

No, they would never be a part of Jesus’ rule over Israel because Jesus wasn’t to be that kind of king. Nor were they truly unified. The divisions among the original twelve remained in future generations of Christians now divided into thousands and thousands of different sects/groups/denominations/networks.

Sometimes the most hostile fights are between people who call themselves Christians. This is particularly the case as Christianity in the West continues its precipitous numerical decline. When we fight amongst each other as brothers and sisters in Christ, we give a poor witness to an increasingly sceptical/hostile secular world. This should not be.

Lord Jesus, you came to unite all people under your lordship. Yet the divisions among believers are stronger than ever. Give us grace to humble ourselves and embrace one another as the sisters and brothers we are. For we ask this in your holy name. Amen.

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