Therefore if there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion, make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.
— PHILIPPIANS 2:1–2 —
Carlos Aguilar: Evangelical Ministries of the Americas | Honduras
One day a believer came up to me and asked, “What aspects of the church should stand out to show the world that we believe in Christ?” I paused for a moment and remembered what Paul, as a pastor, desired to see in the Philippian church, and this passage came to mind. Paul wanted the church to understand that the rich blessedness of the Christian life ought to unite us with one mind, one love, one spirit, and one purpose. As those who have received affection and compassion from Christ, believers must respond with unity of mind, love, spirit, and purpose. Have you received encouragement from Christ? Have you been consoled by His love? Do you have fellowship now with the Spirit of God? Have you come to understand the affection and compassion of God in Christ Jesus? If so, these things should establish bonds between you and others in God’s family. And if so, these things should be reflected in our relationships with one another. As those who have received affection and compassion from Christ, believers must respond with unity of mind, love, spirit, and purpose. This requires a willing response on our part, which is pleasing to God. Specifically, Christ’s church must keep a single focus of mind by being faithful and obedient to His word. They must maintain a consistent and enduring love for one another; they must remain united in spirit and in harmony with one another; they must be dedicated to the same purpose of exalting Christ. These are the things that make believers stand out to the unbelieving world, as “children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom [they] appear as lights in the world” (Phil. 2:15).