Two Things About Unity

Toward the end of Jesus’ life, the gospel of John records one of Jesus’ prayers that sheds a great deal of light on the topic of unity. Jesus prayed, “My prayer is not for them [the disciples] alone. I pray also for those who believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you” (Jn. 17:20-21). Jesus’ prayer reveals at least two perspectives on unity that we, as his followers, should put into practice…

  1. Unity is a BIG deal. At this point, Jesus is experiencing intense stress because he knows he’s about to be killed. In other places in the gospels we read where Jesus actually asked for the Father to not make him do this. It’s within that context where Jesus prays for unity, or oneness, for all people who believe in Him. So, unity is obviously a high priority to Jesus. Therefore, it should be a high priority to those of us who follow Jesus.
  2. Followers of Jesus should have the same vision for unity as Jesus. Jesus prayed for all people who believe in Him to experience the same kind of oneness that exists between the Father and the Son. Unfortunately, most of the discussions I hear on unity are focused on unity within a congregation or within a denomination. Jesus’ vision for unity is so much more grand than that. When we are striving for the type of unity that Jesus prayed for, we are striving to experience the same type of unity that exists between the Father and the Son with EVERY person who believes in Jesus, regardless of church membership or denominational affiliation. That is what Jesus prayed for. Therefore, that should be our vision for unity.

  2 comments for “Two Things About Unity

  1. Jennifer Helms
    October 7, 2011 at 12:57 pm

    Amen, amen, and AMEN. Well said and long overdue!

    • October 7, 2011 at 5:40 pm

      Thanks for reading this Jennifer! I think more and more people are realizing our need to turn from our sectarian and divisive ways. You’re right, though. It’s overdue. Thanks for chiming in and contributing to the conversations.

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