I 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.” John 17:26 NIV
Pam and I ended up on the very back seat of a flight from Atlanta to Seattle. We had won free tickets to anywhere Southwest flies, so we took one of their longest flights to go to a NAIA championship baseball game. That is definitely another story.
In this story, the back seats are the most uncomfortable because there is no room for them to recline. We were a little frustrated that our free trip ended up being uncomfortable. Actually we were looking forward to some sleep and good conversation with one another. This back row had 3 seats and it became obvious that we needed to include the other guy sitting with us in our conversation.
After sharing pictures and stories of our kids, it didn’t take long before we were sharing with him about our love and life with Jesus. When we got to Seattle we actually invited to join us as we took him to his destination in Seattle in our rental car. He experienced the message and the love of the gospel. I still wonder if we won the tickets, just so this guy could hear the gospel message.
As Jesus was about to physically leave the earth, He prayed to the Father for His disciples. Many refer to this prayer as the oneness prayer or Jesus asking that we live in unity with each other and God. Within this passage Jesus also reveals the nuggets of His life mission to communicate the gospel.
- Make God the Father known. Jesus is stating that the disciples did not understand or know who the Father was until He made the Father known to them.
- Jesus first way to make the Father known was through preaching. Jesus used words to spark the imagination of the reality of God.
- Jesus prayed for their eyes to be opened. They needed help to understand what they had been hearing and seeing. The eyes of their heart need the uncovering of understanding that can only come about through the revealing work of the Holy Spirit. Just a few verses early, Jesus said to Phillip, “Have you been with Me so long, and you still do not know the Father?”
- Jesus anticipated repetition of sharing. One time is not enough. Jesus used His teachings and life’s experiences to help His disciples know the Father.
- Jesus was clear that the love of the Father did not previously exist within them. Now, they could “know God’s love.” The experience of “knowing God” also included receiving the love of God that would now reside within them
- The goal is to help people experience the unconditional love and forgiveness that Jesus offers. The world does not know this type of love. Jesus prayed that the disciples would experience within themselves the same impact of “knowing love of and from God the Father” that He had known all of His life.
- Sin blocks the indwelling experience of love. We share the good news because the problem of sin finds its solution in Jesus. Removal of sin, removes condemnation.
- Knowledge about love is not enough. Jesus wanted the disciples and others to experience within themselves the love of the Father
- Jesus wants to abide within a person’s life. The Holy Spirit makes this possible with a person who receives Jesus.
- Knowledge about Jesus is not enough. Jesus desires to come into a person. Romans 10:9-10 states that this belief includes confessing with the mouth and believing in the heart. It takes both.
- Becoming a child of God includes Jesus living inside you. This is far more than believing facts about who Jesus is in our minds. He wants to dwell in our hearts.
How many people around you do not know the Father’s love that Jesus was talking about? They will never know unless they hear it. Being like Jesus means that we have the privilege to share with our own lips about the love of the Father in Jesus Christ. May God open your eyes to see the white field of harvest that is living around you. May others know the love of the Father abiding within them and Jesus abiding within.
Blessings Love y’all.