JESUS PRAYED FOR OUR UNITY
“That they may be made perfect in one.” these are the words of Jesus, found in John 17:23. The words are from the last prayer that Jesus prayed with his disciples before they went out to the garden where he was arrested. As Jesus spoke these words, He was praying for you and for me and for all those who believe in Him. In John 17:5-19, we find that Jesus first prayed for His apostles. His desire for the apostles is found in verse 11…”…that they may be one as We are.” Then in verse 20-21, Jesus prayed for all believers.
“I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through
their word; that they all may be one, as You Father, are in Me, and I in You;
that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me.”
If you are a believer in Christ, you have come to believe through the message of the apostles as it is recorded in the New Testament, and Jesus was praying for you. Again in verse 23, Jesus prayed, ‘…that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.”
What an awesome thought, that Jesus would pray for you and me shortly before His death! What a sobering thought that Jesus prayed for the complete unity of all believers, especially when one considers the division and disunity that has become prevalent in Christianity. According to the 2001 edition of the World Christian encyclopedia, there are 33,830 different and distinct “Christian denominations” in the world today, all claiming to be followers of Christ.
One thing should be evident as we read the words of this prayer. The division and confusion that have been brought about through denominationalism are totally contrary to the desire of Jesus. If we are truly believers in Christ and are truly committed to His cause, can we ignore the issue of unity which was so important to our Lord and Savior?
1 Corinthians 1:10 “I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”
-Wendell Ingram, Via , House to House Publication
Note: We need to study the Bible for ourselves and find the truth instead of just listening to preachers and taking their word for it.
We need to do like the Bereans in Acts 17:11… “These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” Our eternal salvation depends on us knowing the truth.
Jesus said: “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” -John 14:6