This records a significant part of Jesus' high priestly prayer just before His crucifixion. In these verses, Jesus prays for unity among believers and reveals the profound love that exists between Him and the Father. In this prayer, Jesus expresses His desire for unity among believers, praying that they may be "one" just as He and the Father are "one." He speaks of the glory that God the Father has given Him, which He, in turn, gives to believers. This glory refers to the divine presence, power, and authority that comes from being in a loving relationship with the Father.
Applying this verse to our lives, we are invited to embrace the unity and oneness that Christ desires for His followers. This unity is not a mere organizational or institutional connection but a deep spiritual bond that comes from our shared relationship with Jesus as Lord and Savior. As believers, we are united in Christ, and this unity should be evident in our love for one another and our pursuit of God's purposes together.
Jesus continues by stating, "I in them, and you in me, that they may be perfected into one." This reveals the intimate relationship between Jesus, the Father, and believers. As we receive Christ into our hearts through faith, He indwells us through the Holy Spirit. The indwelling presence of the Triune God in believers unites us with God and with one another, creating a spiritual oneness that transcends human barriers.
Applying this aspect of the verse to our lives, we are reminded of the incredible privilege of having God Himself dwelling within us. This indwelling presence empowers us to love one another selflessly and to demonstrate the character of Christ in our lives. The process of being "perfected into one" is an ongoing transformation of our hearts and minds, as we surrender to the work of the Holy Spirit, aligning ourselves with God's will.
This unity among believers is not just for our benefit; it serves a greater purpose. Jesus prays, "that the world may know that you sent me and loved them, even as you loved me." Our unity and love for one another are a powerful testimony to the world of the reality of Jesus' mission and the depth of God's love for humanity.
Applying this aspect of the verse to our lives, we are called to be living witnesses of God's love and the truth of the gospel. As we love one another and stand united in our faith, the world will see the transformative power of Christ and recognize that Jesus was indeed sent by the Father to save and reconcile humanity to God.
In Ephesians 4:3, Paul echoes the call for unity among believers: "Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace." This unity is not based on human efforts alone but on the work of the Holy Spirit, who unites believers in Christ.
In conclusion, John 17:22-23 captures a profound moment in Jesus' high priestly prayer, where He prays for the unity of believers and reveals the intimate relationship between Himself, the Father, and His followers. Through Christ's sacrificial love and the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit, believers are united with one another and with God. This unity serves as a powerful testimony to the world of Jesus' mission and the depth of God's love for humanity. As we embrace this unity and oneness in Christ, may we shine as beacons of God's love, drawing others to the truth of the gospel and the transformative power of Christ's presence in our lives.
See also: vs 20-21
John 17:22-23. The glory which you have given me, I have given to them; that they may be one, even as we are one; I in them, and you in me, that they may be perfected into one; that the world may know that you sent me, and loved them, even as you loved me.