The Psalmist wrote: “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity” (Psalm 133:1). David knew the great joy and comfort of having unity with his brethren, and he also knew the pain of discord such as with Saul and his men as they sought to kill David (1 Samuel 19). The Psalmist writes that the unity of brethren is both good and pleasant, that is good because it is according to the will of God and pleasant because it is more enjoyable than discord. The spiritual challenge for us as Christians is to see the kind of unity that God desires.

The fact is that there are some brethren that actually love and enjoy discord. The apostle John wrote of one brother in the church in the First Century that enjoyed discord rather than unity. “I wrote unto the church; but Diotrephes, who loves to have the preeminence among them, receives us not” (3 John 9). This brother Diotrephes did not want to have unity with John, the apostle, and did not seem to want to have it with any other faithful brethren. He enjoyed discord. David and John express the sentiment that we should desire unity because it is the will of God and also because we will actually enjoy it more than having discord. John wrote; “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth” (3 John 4) and “He that does good is of God” (3 John 11). This passage informs us that genuine unity among brethren begins with truth, that is the word of God (John 17:17). The unity of brethren is established upon the truth of God’s word and so initially there can be no unity among brethren without waking together in the truth.

Some division among brethren comes because some no longer want to walk in the truth of God’s word, but desire to follow their own way, traditions, or the traditions of men (Matthew 15:8-9). Christians should not rejoice in this type of division, but should honestly seek to restore erring brethren back to he way of unity (Galatians 6:1-2). There is some division among brethren that comes about not because of truth, but because of personal pride and opinion. Brethren should never be divided because of these things, but should strive to see “Behold, how good and pleasant it is for brethren to dwell in unity”.

 by Wayne Brewer