Read John Chapter 17
Jn 17:20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in Me through their message, 21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as You are in Me and I am in You. May they also be in Us so that the world may believe that You have sent Me. 22 I have given them the glory that You gave Me, that they may be one as We are One: 23 I in them and You in Me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that You sent Me and have loved them even as You have loved Me. 24 “Father, I want those You have given Me to be with Me where I am, and to see My glory, the glory You have given Me because You loved Me before the creation of the world. 25 “Righteous Father, though the world does not know You, I know You, and they know that You have sent Me. 26 I have made You known to them, and will continue to make You known in order that the love You have for Me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”
There is much more in this passage than we could ever pretend to cover in one short devotional. Our topic for today will be focused on oneness, unity – an inseparable unity. We can easily understand how the Father and the Son are united. We can imagine that Jesus never experienced a moment on earth when He was not fully engaged in communion with His Father and aware of His presence. In this passage Jesus flatly stated that He and the Father are One (verse 22). They are inseparable. They are forever united as One Personhood.
But read verse 21 again. Jesus’ prayer included something which I had previously overlooked all the many times I had read the passage. Jesus prayed that “they also be in Us.” The first part of the verse says, “Just as You are in Me and I am in You.” Putting two and two together, Jesus’ prayer is that you and I be united with Him and the Father! The same unity, that same Oneness that Jesus and the Father has, now includes us! I cannot wrap my mind around that thought. Yet, as we study other scriptures, we discover that His Holy Spirit lives within us. Doesn’t that make us One with the Father and the Son? Are we not united with Them if the Spirit of God resides within our being? Okay, we have gone far, far, beyond what I can fully fathom.
But there is an application. If we know that God lives within us, and that we are united with the Trinity (even if we don’t fully understand it), how should that affect our lives? I can only partially explain it by using marriage as an example. A married couple has agreed to be bound together for the remainder of their lives. Scripture tells us that from that moment on, they are one flesh. Symbolically, from the first moment of marriage, nothing they do is a separate act; what one does affects the other. That is also often true in a physical sense, and I don’t just mean in regard to sexual acts. It is also true in reference to finances, spirituality, and societal things, to name some others.
Using that imperfect analogy, here’s how we can break it down. Everything you and I do has an effect on the Father and the Son. What they do has an effect on us. Since we are permanently joined with the Trinity, our lives should reflect that union. What we do, say, and think should be done in “conference” and in conjunction with Them. That is more clearly stated in verse 23. There is a purpose for our unity with God, the Father, and the Spirit. That purpose is so that the world will know that God exists, and that Jesus is the exact duplicate representation of God. That can only happen as you and I work toward becoming like Jesus. If we are one with Him, we will be like Him.
My dear SSA friend, the more I study God’s word, the more I realize that the depth of my Christianity is sorely lacking. No wonder that so many Christians don’t enjoy reading and meditating on God’s word! It convicts us of our shortcomings. It reveals what worms we are, if not covered by the blood of Jesus. Nevertheless, we are required to examine our lives by studying His word, so that we will never be satisfied with our current level of spirituality. We still have a long way to go.
Let me make one more analogy. We are subject to the laws of our land. Every day, we have to make decisions about how we live, based on whatever laws are in effect at that time. We must consciously choose to not run red lights. We are required to fasten our seat belts. The things we buy and use are altered to conform to the wishes of our legislatures. We are required to force our minds to think about what is legal and what is illegal.
Well, something or Someone much more authoritative and reliable begs us to carefully consider our thoughts, actions, and words before they transpire. Our Father’s advice is 100% trustworthy and reliable. We are one with Him for good reason. Only He knows what is in our best interests and only He knows how we can fulfill His purpose for our lives, becoming the beacon to the world which leads others to confession and belief in Jesus. Let us be One with Them, in complete harmony, every minute of every day of our lives.
Prayer: Lord, help us. We fail miserably every day. Keep us aware that we are united in You and represent You in all we do.