Kingdom Mindset 102...Unity
Welcome to the second post of the Kingdom Mindset series! I hope you caught the introduction posted previously. Let’s jump right in!
Cultivating a Kingdom mindset requires three things: (1) understanding what Kingdom is through the eyes of Jesus, (2) intentionally relating to it, and then (3) functioning in that mindset. We will follow this outline throughout the entire Kingdom Mindset series.
I feel an urgency to respond personally to the mindset that Jesus is highlighting today and to fully function in the truth of the revelation. As we see the escalation of chaos, turmoil and division in our nation, running parallel with the Biblical signs of the time, the
mindset of true Kingdom unity is a key to God’s plan of worldwide revival.
“Now John answered Him, saying, ‘Teacher, we saw someone who does not follow us casting out demons in Your name, and we forbade him because he does not follow us.’ But Jesus said, ‘Do not forbid him, for no one who works a miracle in My name can soon afterward speak evil of me. For he who is not against us is on our side.’” Mark 9:38-40 (NKJV)
Jesus was addressing a spirit of sectarianism that had crept into the mindsets of His disciples. A sectarian spirit, or a sectarian tendency, is to have excessive devotion to a particular sect or denomination, especially in religion (definition from Webster’s dictionary).
In this story recorded in Mark, the disciples saw someone doing the works of Jesus (in this case, setting captives free by casting out demons). Because this person was not in the same group (or we could say ‘denomination’) and was not joined with the disciples, he was perceived as being an outsider. The disciples told him to stop because he wasn’t in their group. This mindset is what Jesus addresses in Mark 9.
A denominational mindset is in direct opposition to the Kingdom mindset for many reasons. The number one danger is the subtle division it brings to the body of Christ. If we are committed to a Kingdom mindset, then we have to recognize and confront this disposition, or ideology that we allow to operate in our minds. Not only does it bring division to the body, but it cultivates a spirit of pride that is not conducive to the love and unity of the Spirit.
The night before Jesus died, He prayed 5 times to the Heavenly Father that we may all be one. For Him to target this so many times in prayer says a lot. To be one, as He and the Father are one, is to have the mindset that the body of Christ has no dividing walls. While we are each unique and have our own giftings, we can’t allow the ‘walls’ that have been created to keep us from unity in the Spirit. Let’s take this one step further. We need to recognize the gifts and callings of those that believe a little differently than we do; those that might be of a different ‘group or denomination’. And not only recognize them, but embrace them. God wants His entire body to work together for the great end-time harvest that is coming.
“There is one body [of believers] and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope when you were called [to salvation]—one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of us all who is [sovereign] over all and [working] through all and [living] in all.” Ephesians 4:4-5 (Amplified) This verse is the one thing the entire body of Christ can and should all agree on! Everything else is relative. There are no denominational walls in the Kingdom of God. This is a Kingdom mindset.
To function in this Kingdom mindset requires a renewing of our mind. We have been conditioned to accept the divisions in the body of Christ, and to operate within our own perimeters, but in actuality they are hindering the fullness of His purpose and plan. Let’s choose now to move into the Kingdom mindset of true oneness and unity and watch God move on it! Imagine the power and impact the body of Christ could possess and demonstrate worldwide if we operated in Kingdom principles without denominational walls of division!
The key to operating in this Kingdom mindset is twofold. First, commit to see others that are not ‘in your group or denomination’ through the eyes of love, as Jesus sees them; and secondly, do not judge, criticize or condemn what you don’t agree with or understand. God is the only true judge. The answer is simple but operating in it requires the grace of God. We will not see the fullness of God’s plan until we learn to live and move as one the way Jesus prayed.
PRAY…Lord forgive us for accepting the divisions in the body of Christ as normal, when it was never your idea for your people. Forgive us for the times we have promoted denominational walls, or wrongly judged others, either through our words, our actions, or our thought life. Forgive us for not walking in true love and unity of the Spirit towards all those you call your own.
Thank you, Father, for your gift of grace to be able to walk in a renewed mind, a Kingdom mindset. Thank you that as we repent and renounce our past mistakes, you are quick to forgive and will begin to show us ways to connect and align with our brothers and sisters of different denominations. Thank you for your grace Lord to truly begin to walk in the fullness of your love and unity.
DECREE…Denominational walls are coming down, and the Kingdom of God is advancing through the spirit of unity in His body!