One of the many passages of Scripture that floors me when I read it is John 17:20-24. The verses are chalked full of more theological principles then I could possibly hope to address with my limited knowledge, but I would love to share how and why it speaks to me – chiefly that I can point to it as a historical moment in time that Jesus prayed for me.
I find that most places throughout the Gospels, we absorb the words of Jesus through a sort of transplantation, taking what Jesus is speaking to His disciples and supplanting its applicability to ourselves – and rightly so. What I find neat in John 17, however, is the specificity with which Jesus calls out his future believers (of which I am one):
“I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me through their message.” (John 17:20 NLT)
Alright, Jesus, you’ve got my attention.
So what is he praying for? That’s where it gets really interesting:
“I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in me, Father, and I am in you…” (John 17:21 NLT)
He wants us all to be one. Sounds like a nice Hallmark card, but is it feasible? How, for instance, could LSU fans and Alabama fans possibly bridge the impassable ravine of football rivalry? This is accomplished not through our own power, but through the glory of Christ working within us:
“I have given them the glory you gave me, so they may be one as we are one. I am in them and you are in me.” (John 17:22 NLT)
So, Jesus…what do you want this to look like?
“May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me.” (John 17:23 NLT)
Wow. Let that sink in. Jesus is calling us to experience harmonious perfection to the point that God’s infinite love will be self-evident to those that see it. Talk about a gut check.
Why does Jesus want this? Why does Jesus want us to make known to the world that he was sent so “that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life?” That’s what even more amazing about his next declaration:
“Father, I want these whom you have given me to be with me where I am. Then they can see all the glory you gave me because you loved me even before the world began!” (John 17:24 NLT)
He wants this…because he wants to spend eternity sharing his glory with us in heaven.
Boom. Jesus wants to hang out with you in Heaven. It’s right there in writing. He said so himself!
– Nicolas C. Day
 John 3:16
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Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.