Paul said: let everything be done decently and in order, adding that God is not the author of confusion (1Corinthians 14:33, 40).
James wrote that where there is envy and strife there is confusion and every evil work (James 3:13-18). If God is not the author of confusion, who then is? It is definitely the devil. Not only does the devil cause confusion; that also provides the right atmosphere for his operation.
When Jesus was praying for his disciples told the Father: that they may be one as we are one (John 17:21-23). And the atmosphere of unity will bring about the condition for the church to manifest the glory of God to the world. Jesus said that when we are one then the world believe in him.
A psalmist said: “How good and pleasant is it for brothers to dwell together in unity; it is like the oil on the head of Aaron and goes down to his skirt (the manifestation of the Holy Spirit), it is like the dew on the mount of Hermon. There God commands his blessings (Psalm 133).”
When it comes to the body of Christ, it is about unity in diversity. We are many members in one body of Christ (Romans 12:1-8) and have to learn to flow together in order, with humility permeating everything we do. Elders are supposed to be honoured, and everyone should be submitted one to another (1Peter 5:5).
On the family front, unity should be the watchword. When God made Eve and showed her to Adam, he said: this is now the flesh of my flesh and bone of my bone (Genesis 2:18-25). The bible says: man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.
Two becoming one is the mystery of marriage, it is the core purpose of it, which makes it a manifestation of Christ and the church. When Paul was referring to that in his letter to the Ephesians, he said that marriage should manifest the unity between the Christ and the church (Ephesians 5:22-33). Christ is the head, while church is the body, it is in that state of unity that the church will be able to display to the principalities and powers the manifold wisdom of God (Ephesians 3:10).
For the purpose of instituting unity among his disciples, Jesus removed the need for competition and lording it over others as a means of greatness in his kingdom (Matthew 23:11).
So the competition is not among ourselves. What we are running against is God’s destiny and timing for us. We are in a race to catch up with the mind of God for us. Paul said: “this one thing I do, forgetting the things that are behind, I press on to the upward call of God in Christ Jesus, I strive to lay hold of the reason God has laid hold of me (Philippians 3:19-14).” I am not trying to lay hold of what God has laid up for you, in that case I will have to struggle with you. Therefore there is no need for jealousy.
The right order is when everyone submits to the word of God, because when Eve disobeyed God’s word and then got Adam to follow in her rebellion, it was the beginning of disorder on the earth.
Remember that in the first verse of the bible, we were introduced to a world that was in chaos (Genesis 1:1-4). After God made the heaven and the earth, the earth went into state where it was “without form” and “void” and “darkness was upon the face of the deep.”
Three phrases were used to describe the sad state of the earth. That it was “without form” meant there was no order; that it was void meant it was empty of life; that it was dark meant it was empty of light. God in the six days of creation, reformed the earth, put in light and introduced life on the earth. He got the earth going on the path to fulfilling his plan for it. The earth was set in order by the word of God. And man was meant to do nothing but to keep the order of God. He was not equipped to set his own order. So when he disregarded the word of God, he was out of order and therefore disqualified to set order.
A roman soldier told Jesus: I am a man under authority, I am in order, and I can tell my soldier come and he comes and to another go and he goes (Matthew 8:9).
Because Jesus operated under the authority of the father, all power in heaven and on earth was given to him so that he can set a world in disorder back to order (Matthew 28:18-20), and that order goes by the name the kingdom of God.
Paul’s advocacy in the book of Romans for us to be transformed by the renewing of our minds, so that we might be in alignment with the will of God, is all about the reordering of our inner world.
When the inner world of Adam and Eve was disorderly when they disobeyed the word of God, their external world was in disorder (Genesis 3). So a new order is established in the inner world then in the outer world. Everything starts from the inside. Jesus said: make the tree good and fruit will be good also (Matthew 12:33).
Remember that the tool through which God set the world in order in the first chapter of the bible was his word. So it is instructive that when he wanted to manifest on the earth for the purpose of restoration, it was as God the word (John 1:1-5).
When we believe him, believe the word (Romans 10), we are saved, we come right back into fellowship with God, but through the teaching of the word and the influence of the Holy Spirit we go back into mental inner alignment, so that we can walk with God.
As it is written: can two walk together except they be agreed (Amos 3:3)? The process of agreeing with God on all points of his word is the transformational process we ought to commit to when we become Christians.
- The Law, the Prophets and the Writings, Part 10: The Wilderness Years (vision.org)
- Numbers 1 (asorensen.wordpress.com)