Minister's Message

“Unity: An Impenetrable Shield”

“Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also might be sanctified through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me” (John 17:20, 21).

Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I am so thankful that God our Father has blessed our lives to roll on a little while longer. May we use the time afforded us by His grace and mercy to seek to fulfill His will for each of us, in this our generation. Someone has rightly penned the following verse:

“Making a roof from the weather,

   Or building a house for the King,

 Only by working together,

Have men accomplished a thing.”

Brothers and sisters, where there is unity, there is strength. Unity…unity…conquers division.

Webster defines unity as “a condition of harmony: accord, or, continuity without deviation or change, as in purpose or action.” In Ephesians 4:3, the apostle Paul admonishes us to “endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” Here the reference is to the unity produced by the Spirit. The Spirit was to speak of those things given to Him to promote the kingdom of God for which Jesus died. Voldi, in The Big Fisherman, by Lloyd C. Douglas, says, about Christ: “The man has a compelling voice. I can’t describe it or the effect of it. It’s a unifying voice that converts a great crowd of mutually distrustful strangers into a tight little group of blood relatives.”

The source of the unity, “the Spirit,” is what makes it “an impenetrable shield.” It cannot be pierced or penetrated and serves as a defense. Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ prayed that we would be one, be unified, as He and His Father are, and this unity would confirm to the world that He was indeed sent from God. Unity must be fomented. I’ve been reading The Cause We Plead:  A Story of the Restoration Movement by J.M. Powell. One of the key figures in the Restoration Movement is Thomas Campbell. The following is what he had to say about “unity”:

Division among the Christians is a horrid evil, fraught with many evils.

It is antichristian, as it destroys the visible unity of the body of Christ;

as if he were divided against himself, excluding and excommunicating

a part of himself. It is antiscriptural, as being strictly prohibited by his

sovereign authority; a direct violation of his express command. It is

antinatural, as it excited Christians to condemn, to hate, and oppose one

one another, who are bound by the highest and most endearing obligations

to love each other as brethren, even as Christ has loved them. In a word,

it is productive of confusion and of every evil work.

Since coming to the University church of Christ, I have attempted to preach, teach, and model a spirit of unity within the congregation, within the city of Cleveland, and across this great brotherhood of ours. I truly believe the words of Longfellow, in Hiawatha, when he wrote: “All your strength is in your union, all your danger is in discord.” When it comes to unity within the body of Christ, we must adhere to Jesus’ prayer, Paul’s plea, and God’s plan!

Until next week, University church family, remember our Mission and Vision: “A New  Testament church seeking to evangelize, starting with the central core of Greater Cleveland. We will use our unique gifts and opportunities to engage with the community to bring souls to Jesus, develop and equip them for a 21st century ministry.”  As we move forward, please remember that God loves you, Jesus died for you, I love you, and I am your servant for Jesus’ sake!


Yours because of Calvary,

Terrance R. McClain, Ph








  April 2020  
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