The January – April 2017 ACTION magazine had an interesting editorial written by Warren Hardig. The article titled ‘Unity’ centered on Psalms 133. Recently, a team of nine short term missionaries became unified over the course of two weeks while trimming and removing some large, old trees on the OMS campus as well as the adjoining Tokyo Biblical Seminary (TBS). We also replaced two wooden decks and landscaped the two campuses.
This team was fueled by brotherly Christian unity driven by God’s Holy Spirit. They were able to work flawlessly alongside Japan’s MFM team, students, administrative staff, OMS resident missionaries, and faculty from TBS. The team also worked well with the hired contractors operating the heavy equipment.
Psalm 133, is only three verses, but so rich and powerful in its content.* Psalm 133:2, describes unity as “the precious oil upon the head, coming down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard, coming down upon the edge of his robes.” This anointing oil serves as a metaphor to point out the exquisite excellence of brotherly love. The entire person of Aaron received the anointing of oil, similar to a baptism, and emphasized the Christian love overflowing into the community. The tree team experienced this love in many ways and received it from the Japanese people they served.
Psalm 133:3, uses a metaphor stating, “It (unity) is like the dew of Hermon, coming down upon the mountains of Zion…” Please note Mount Herman is the highest peak in Israel. That is the immensity of how important unity is in God’s viewpoint. Finally, in verse 3, “For there (where unity is) the Lord commanded the blessings-life forever.” How wonderful to know God ensures his blessings for us when we are in unity.
This team experienced God’s abundant blessings during the two weeks in Japan. Team members gave their testimonies at various churches on Sunday. However, tears were shed after hearing that 99 percent of Japanese are lost and that 1.5 million young people are shut-ins due to depression. Effective praying resulted from this knowledge. Christian tracks were distributed in local neighborhoods and prayer walks occurred. Unity and love abounded among the team and the Japanese people.
John 17:23 states, “I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me.” The final mark left by the team in Japan was taking one of the larger trees and carving a large cross into the tall stump that remained. This signified the love of Christ has for humanity and the lost people in Japan.
*It’s possible as a student of the Bible that one has read these three verses and moved onward to read other parts of God’s word and never caught the significance and depth that these three verses contain. It’s this author’s intent to encourage one to read Warren Hardig’s article and do a personal study of these verses with the help of a concordance.