Peter Kreeft on Unity of Christian Church
Peter Kreeft, philosophy professor, author and writer spoke at Gordon College about the unity of the Christian Church. The three main points Kreeft spoke about were obstacles of unity, the way to unity and the nature of unit.
Kreeft says the unity of church involves affirming both nature and grace as well as seeing the important in both subject and objective religion. He says that sources of authority are also an obstacle but Christians must put the word of God, or the Bible at the center of authority. Kreeft goes on to say that the issue of faith and works “is the most crucial of all.” He says that the only way to salvation is through faith, but the only way to sanctification is to follow up faith with works. Kreef says that sin is the “deepest obstacle” to unity and “[Christians] will have Church unity when [Christians] have unity in God.” Lastly, he says that the allusion of absent unity is important to overcome.
Kreeft explain the way to unity by telling a series of jokes. In one joke he says that a Catholic Priest believes there are too many Protestants in Northern Ireland, and a Protestant Minister believes there are too many Catholics in Northern Ireland, but Jesus says they are both right, and there are not enough Christians. The point of these jokes, Kreeft says, “is that the center is Christ and that the Catholic Church does not have a corner on that center.” Kreeft says that Christ must rule churches completely, and church unity was lost when Christ was not the center.
Kreeft lastly explains the nature of unity. He summarizes the way to unity by saying that “Christian unity is Christ.” He says like God, Christian unity is “one but many” and Christians must reflect theologically about disagreements by being close to God.