We’re going through the New Testament wanting to come to a deeper understanding of the doctrine of the Trinity. Right now, we’re in John 17 looking at the high priestly prayer of Jesus. Tonight, we shall be finishing up this prayer. Last night, we looked at how Jesus prayed specifically for the apostles. Tonight, we’ll see what he prayed for us, those who would hear through the message of the apostles. The following is John 17:20-26:
20“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21that 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. 22I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: 23I 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. 26I 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.”
Anti-Trintiarians often point to verse 21 when John 10:30 is cited and ask “Well are we to be one as the Father and Son are one?” Let’s look at what’s being asked. There is a prayer for some type of oneness. What do we have in the Trinity. We have the Father and the Son in one another doing their works together in perfect unity. By analogy, we are to be in the Father and the Son in that we are also doing the work of God in evangelism. The analogy depends on the Trinity. Just as when we are to show the love of God, which we cannot literally show as it is infinite, but we are to show love like it.
Also, Jesus says that he has given us glory. This is something that we should be astounded by. We often think of how we do ministry for the glory of God, and indeed we should, but God also glorifies those who believe in him.
Unity is something that Christ desires as well. That’s one reason that here at Deeper Waters, we try to focus only on what unites us. Now this doesn’t mean all Christians are to walk in lock-step, but if we are to divide from someone, let it be that it is because they are not a Christian brother or sister. We should agree to disagree and still celebrate our union in Christ. Consider this. We’re going to be a unity in Heaven forever. We might as well get used to it now.
Why does Christ want this for us? He wants them to see the glory of God. Seeing the glory of God is for our good. That glory will shape us to be who we were meant to be. In theological circles, this is known as the beatific vision. We also once again see the glory that was there before the creation of the world. Christ again points to his deity.
Christ has made known to the world that he is sent from the Father and he is going to continue to do so. How? Through the work of the church. The church is to spread the love of God throughout the world and where the love of God is, there is the Father and the Son and the Spirit, and Christ is present.
Tomorrow, we shall move on to the next chapter.