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COMMUNITY WITH UNITY BY NADINE JUDGE


“How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity! It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, running down on Aaron’s beard, down on the collar of his robe. It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion. For there the LORD bestows his blessing, even life forevermore.” (133:1-3; NIV)


Now, you might wonder why I started with this verse. This verse made a lot more sense when I sat down and examined it. Sometimes it is so easy-to-read verses in the Bible and rush along to the next verse, without sitting down and examining what the verse or verses are actually saying.

Let us unpack this a little.


There are so many pictures here of what unity looks like. Oil running down the head, running down a beard, running down Aaron’s beard onto the collar of his robe; and then there is the picture of dew of Herman falling on Mount Zion.


Do you stop to say: what is going on here? For one, the idea of oil running down my head, down my chin (thankfully I don’t have a beard) and onto the collar of my shirt does not sound wonderful to me. We need to understand the context of this picture image to see why it is used as a picture of unity.


What is the lesson of Aaron’s “oily beard”?


Moses poured some of the anointing oil on Aaron’s head and anointed him to sanctify him. (NIV Leviticus 8:12). The primary purpose of anointing with oil was to sanctify, to set the anointed person or object apart. Originally, the oil was used exclusively for the priests and the Tabernacle articles, but its use was later extended to include kings (1 Sam10:1).


So how does this picture refer to unity? We need to keep in mind that when David wrote this, he had the picture of oil running “down”. The oil was administered by someone else (in Aaron’s case it was Moses who poured the oil). David is comparing this as God giving His people Unity. Unity is not just us in agreement with each other, it is a God given a gift we need to understand, enact and foster.


Mount Hermon and Mount Zion

Mount Hermon is located at the northeastern boundary of Israel. Along with melting snow and abundant rainfall, large springs at the base of the mountain form the main headwaters of the Jordan river.

Mount Zion is in the South - so a long way from Mount Hermon. Not only is Mount Zion a long way, it is also much drier.

So the picture here is that Mount Hermon blesses Mount Zion with dew - essentially from North to South and so the blessings of unity flow. (gotquestions.org)


Harmony among God’s people is life-giving.


What does this mean for us?

We need to understand that Unity is a gift that God gives. Some of the challenges we have are that if we do not enjoy community, we will not experience God’s unity.

When we stay away from community, it is so easy to be in unity with oneself, or just with your partner. But look at the last verse “For there the Lord bestows His blessing, even life forevermore.”

It is in the challenges of community that we find unity and blessing.


(NIV) John 17:11b “Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name, the name you gave me, so that they may be one as we are one.”

Jesus asks that we live in Unity with one another. It is so easy to see what separates us, but instead Jesus prays and asks that we are one as He and the Father are one.


How can we live in Unity?


build one another up - encourage those around us, see the good in each other.

see the value in each other - we are all so different, and yet Jesus values each one of us - see that value in each other.

emphasise what is eternal - not internal. Keep our eyes on what is important to Jesus - not to us as individuals.


In his book, “The pursuit of God,” AW Tozer said this: “Has it ever occurred to you that one hundred pianos all tuned to the same fork are automatically tuned to each other? They are of one accord by being tuned, not to each other, but to another standard to which each one must individually bow. So one hundred worshipers together, each one looking away to Christ, are in heart nearer to each other than they could possibly be, were they to become ‘unity’ conscious and turn their eyes away from God to strive for closer fellowship.


Unity comes not through uniformity – but through each individual, as different as he may be from the others, turning his gaze steadily upon the crucified and risen Jesus Christ. Unity comes not from a common language, or nationality, or race, or colour, or political agenda, but from a common vision and posture as we all with unveiled face behold the glory of the Lord and bow the knee before him.”


Let us look back at Psalm 133:1 - 3


“How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity! It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, running down on Aaron’s beard, down on the collar of his robe. It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion. For there the LORD bestows his blessing, even life forevermore.”


Unity - focusing on God means that we receive a blessing, even life evermore. Surely, it is worth pursing God and the blessing of His UNITY.


Yours In Unity

Nadine



Women of Reverence welcomes Nadine Judge as a regular contributor for our theme this month.Welcome our guest contributor Nadine Judge.


Lead Elder’s wife, Human Capital Specialist and Executive Facilitator

Nadine Judge is married to Francis Judge and together they lead Venture Church in Fairlands, Johannesburg. They have 3 children, 2 of whom are married and one more who is currently in college. Nadine and Francis also have one granddaughter who blesses them both abundantly.


Nadine was an HR Manager from 2006 and was responsible for more than 900 people in WesBank.


Nadine was invited to join Ovations Consulting in 2008, where she oversaw a significant two-year change management operation within Mutual and Federal.

She subsequently went into her own private practice and oversaw leadership development within Watson Pharmaceuticals (USA) and a Transformation Programme for the Saint Gobain Group. A change management project for the Department of Education in Mpumalanga led to managing a coaching process within the Smollan Group and working at Sasfin Bank (through a 3rd party - LRMG), running MDP programmes for Middle to Senior Management in Gauteng and Cape Town. This included facilitation, coaching and writing reports over 2 years.

During 2015 / 2016 Nadine also attended Business Coaching training through IDM School of Coaching and was trained by Myles Downey – a top international business coach.

Nadine is proficient in English and Afrikaans, and has vast experience operating in multi-cultural contexts. She has developed leaders in South Africa, Zambia, Lesotho, Switzerland, Bulgaria and Iceland. When she isn't inspiring leaders and assisting Francis in leading a church, Nadine is often found where coffee, books and internet converge.






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