…endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace (Eph. 4:3)
The world continually seeks unity, yet always it is elusive. Laws, treaties, conferences, summits, accords and agreements ultimately fail to bring unity or peace. It has been stated every treaty ratified ultimately with time has broken down. Isaiah wrote it truthfully when he stated, “There is no peace… for the wicked” (Isa.48:22).
Impossible as peace and unity have been, Paul tells us to endeavor or, as the Amplified version says,“be be eager and strive toward unity”. Notice it is not unity–period; nor is it even unity of the Body or Church. Rather, it is unity of the Spirit. Again, I stress it is unity of the Spirit. The Old Testament is loaded with picture types for us to learn from and apply (NT commentary of OT found in Rom.15:4; I Cor.10:11).
Consider such unity as illustrated in Exodus: The tabernacle consisted of 48 boards, built on 96 silver sockets. The silver had come from that given by each man’s half shekel of silver as their price of redemption. Interestingly, all men were required to pay the same redemption price.
This reminds us to consider I Peter 1:18-19 with great thanks!
“…knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.” (NKJV)
There was likely a half-ton of silver contained in the sockets from which the boards were erected. In this wonderful picture, the tabernacle boards represent believers being formed into one Body.
The silver is a type of redemption; redemption being the very foundation of the church, which is also purchased by the blood of Christ (Acts 20:28). The boards were held together, unified, by an unseen rod (Ex.36:33), which passed through the heart of each board.
An onlooker could see the outward unity of the unified boards but not the bar inside, which formed and sustained the unity. This unseen or invisible rod represents the invisible Christ living inside every believer–the one who unifies us. Paul writes in Colossians 1:27 “Christ in you, the hope of glory.”