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R.L. Dabney on Christian Unity

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This quote comes from R.L. Dabney and is drawn from his Discussions. It deals with the always-difficult subject of unity among Christians. Dabney writes realistically about the implausibility of Christians, mere men, agreeing on disputable issues such as church government. I find this quote timely as I think about associations like Together for the Gospel or even the Twin Lakes Fellowship, groups and events that are deliberate about looking beyond disputable matters and joining forces around the gospel–around the main thing.

Men, being fallible, always have differed, and always will honestly differ in details. How vain is it to expect anything else, when we look soberly over the past history of opinion; when we remember that the different races are reared under different climes, languages, political institutions, and social usages, all of which have an unavoidable effect upon their habitudes of thought; when we consider the limitation and weakness of man’s understanding; and, above all, when we bear in mind that he is at best a sinner, imperfectly sanctified, with passions and prejudices still subsisting. Men cannot be made to think exactly alike, if they think honestly, and this simply because they are men.

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