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Sunday, September 14, 2014

"United We Stand, Divided We Fall"

Photo by: James Barker

The old Aesop’s Fable goes like this:
“A lion used to prowl about a field in which four oxen used to dwell. Many a time he tried to attack them; but whenever he came near they turned their tails to one another, so that whichever way he approached them he was met by the horns of one of them. At last, however, they fell a-quarreling among themselves, and each went off to pasture alone in the separate corner of the field. Then the Lion attacked them one by one and soon made an end of all four. United we stand, divided we fall.”*

Very soon, Scotland will decide in a referendum whether or not it wants to remain a part of the United Kingdom.***

Here, in Spain, there are two regions that would like to become independent countries: Catalonia and the Basque Country.

My own great-greats fought on both sides of the American Civil War. I’m from the South, and my husband is from the North. (For you curious people, we do not re-fight the Civil War in our home!) The southern states wanted to secede from the union, and God, in His sovereignty, kept the United States of America together. Both sides had good ideas, and it’s extremely sad that 620,000-850,000 people died in that war.**

People love the idea of independence!

We like to think we’re completely independent. We can think as we wish, do as we like, live as we want, and believe what we feel is true and right.

Freedom is wonderful.

Independence can be a good thing.

And, it can also be a bad thing.

As independent as we like to be, we will answer to Someone. That Someone is God. He’s the only One who has the right to rule over our spirit. (He put our souls in us when He made Adam and Eve, the only ones in Creation that were made in the image of God. Genesis 2:7) God sees what we do. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do (Hebrews 4:13). We will give an account. So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God (Romans 14:12).

Because we belong to Christ, by faith, we should: 
  1. Put away the old life, be witnesses for Christ, and live holyTherefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. . . . Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him (2 Corinthians 5:17, 20-21). I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service (Romans 12:1).
  2. Be merciful to othersFor whosoever shall give you a cup of water to drink in my name, because ye belong to Christ, verily I say unto you, he shall not lose his reward (Mark 9:41).
  3. Follow Christ’s exampleFor even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls (1 Peter 2:21-25).
I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord,
beseech you that ye walk worthy
of the vocation wherewith ye are called,
With all lowliness and meekness,
with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;
Endeavouring to keep the
unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
There is one body, and one Spirit,
even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;
One Lord, one faith, one baptism,
One God and Father of all, who is above all,
and through all, and in you all.
(the Apostle Paul, Ephesians 4:1-6)

“United we stand, divided we fall.”

* Fable from I updated a few spellings for clarity, such as “one” for “wone.”


*** The political examples are examples only. The people of these countries will decide. 

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