“And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.” (John 17:11)
“Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” (Amo 3:3) This ancient proverb provides a descriptive word picture. Can two people walk together unless they agreed beforehand on the direction of their travel? It reminds me of a game we played in school. You had to stay together and you could not break the group up. An example of this would be a light post. You were not supposed to split the group by walking on the opposite side of the pole; you had to stay on the same side as the rest of the group. It was childish, but the goal was to prevent the group from splitting in two. We accomplished this with discussion beforehand, and by appointing a leader. When you knew the plan and who to follow, the goal is accomplished with ease. We became as one in a group.
In our Affirmation, Jesus shows that the Father and Son agreed to walk together. His prayer is, “Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one.” The implication is that this oneness is found in the name given. “Keep them in your name, which you have given me,” With the goal as stated, “that they may be one, even as we are one.” Without His name, there is no unity. For us to be one even as they are one we must, 1) Agree beforehand on the goal, 2) Appoint the leader. Finally, 3) Follow the leader and the plan. The one with the plan and the goal is our Leader. We cannot claim His leadership or His Name if we do not follow the plan. If we follow the plan and His leadership, we will walk together bearing His Name. Then the goal is accomplished with ease.
Jesus tells us; “I and my Father are one.” (Joh 10:30) This simple statement is true with great depth. The religious leaders at the time wanted to stone Jesus for blasphemy for saying it. One of the reasons is lost on most modern readers. According to the custom at the time, the eldest son would receive a double portion of blessing from the Father. On top of that, the eldest could make decisions pertaining to the estate of His Father. The reason is simple. Everything the Father owned belonged to his family, especially His Eldest Son. Seeing as the eldest was to receive a double portion through inheritance. Therefore, for Jesus to say, “I and my Father are one,” from a political and economical standpoint said a lot. The claim of social equality with the God of the universe was more than they could take. Jesus taking the place and role as the 2nd Adam, never claimed spiritual equality with the Father while on the earth. If they would have listened to Him they would have known the truth. Jesus said among them, “Why callest thou me good? none is good, save one, that is, God.” (Luk 18:19) He also said, “Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I.” (Joh 14:28) To the disciple, He revealed this truth, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him.” (Joh 13:16) Jesus tells this truth as one who has been sent, “Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.” (Joh 4:34) Even though Jesus gave the leaders of that day these clarifications for correct understand, they refused to listen to Him.
We covered all that to show that Jesus was in complete unity with the Father, His goals, and His leadership. Jesus has set the example for us to follow, “Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus: That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God.” (Rom 15:5-7) Speaking of His resurrection to the disciples, He encourages them with the unity of the Family of God. “At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.” (Joh 14:20) When Jesus rose from the dead, His life proved the oneness and unity of the Father and the Son. The other part of the promise of the verse is that we would be “in Him and He in us.” We have talked about this in previous chapters, “And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.” (Gal 4:6) With this, we can understand the unity. Now we have the Spirit of the Son living inside us, Jesus had the spirit of the Father live inside of Him, “For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;” (Col 1:19) With all this in mind the next couple of verses come to life, let’s read Jesus’ prayer; “That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.” (Joh 17:21-23) Jesus had provided the way of oneness and unity with our Daddy. Jesus gives to us what He has received, especially the love of the Father. Jesus declares that He has given us the glory the Father has given Him. Let us read what this glory is, “And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.” (Joh 17:5) This was the glory Jesus enjoyed before the world was, before there ever was a human. It was the same glory that traveled over the face of the deep at creation. This is how much our Daddy and Lord loves us. “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness:” (Gen 1:26a) From the very beginning the plan was to give us the greater glory of being in their likeness. We are to share in their glory, a glory greater than what Adam enjoyed in the garden. We will share in the Glory of God and His Son! This will be covered this in more detail soon.
We should look into how we become one in Jesus and the Father a little more. We are told, “And ye are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s.” (1Cor 3:23) We see this by how the Spirit has been given, God’s spirit to Jesus, Jesus’ spirit to us. To cement this outpouring, we are given direction to walk with our Lord, “Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.” (Joh 14:23) This statement by Jesus is like a treasure map, leading to a great treasure. Let us follow the map and see what it reveals. So we need to keep Jesus’ words, this brings us to the first stop on the map. “But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.” (Mat 4:4) Jesus was quoting Deuteronomy 8:3 to Satan to endure the temptation presented Him in the wilderness. We must live by every word of God. To say it another way, we find the way of life in the words of God. This brings us to the next stop, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God.” (Joh 1:1-2) On this stop, we learn the eternal ever-present word of God was with and within God at the very beginning. Moving on we end up at the final location, “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” (Joh 1:14) With this stop, we open the treasure chest of this beautiful truth. We must abide by the words of our Lord; these words are the words of God, which was made flesh in human form through Jesus. By adhering to these words we experience the Father’s love, and then Father and Son come into us, thus making us one as they are one. The side effect is we receive the glory given to us by Jesus, which He received from the Father. Amazing!!! You might be asking, how do I lock this in? Jesus tells us, “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.” (Joh 15:4) If we abide then we have this fulfillment coming true in our lives. “For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us. Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God; Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.”(2Co 1:20-22)
It would be a mistake if we did not talk a little about the unity in the Body of Christ, which is the Family of God. To be truly one as they are one we must be one in the body as the church. This is part of the promise. Without much commentary let us read, “Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus: That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God.” (Rom 15:5-7) “But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will. For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. For the body is not one member, but many.” (1Co 12:11-14) “And those members of the body, which we think to be less honourable, upon these we bestow more abundant honour; and our uncomely parts have more abundant comeliness. For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked:” (1Co 12:23-24) “That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it. Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.” (1Co 12:25-27) “I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.” (Eph 4:1-7) Be Blessed Family.
Let’s Pray “Daddy, we thank You for once again being able to be one with You. Through Your Son, our Lord and Savior, we have found oneness through the Spirit. Your words have become as flesh through Jesus, and His words leads us to the unity Your desire. Help us to always abide in Him, and walk in His ways. For His ways please You and they are the road map to wholeness in Your love. I know and confess that without Jesus it is impossible to reach out and feel the embrace of Your presence. We honor and praise Jesus our Christ forever. May it always be to Your glory!” In Jesus’ precious and holy name we pray, Amen!
~We Shall Be Like Him – 1 John 3:2~