This Shared Life – The Body of Christ


“Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are.” John 17:11

“And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one.” John 17:22

ONE — Being a single entity, unit, object, or living being… Characterized by unity; undivided… Of the same kind or quality… Forming a single entity of two or more components…

ONENESS — the quality of being one; singleness; sameness; identity; unity of thought, feeling, aim, etc.; harmony; concord; uniqueness.

We would all admit that Jesus did not pray to simply fill time or exercise a religious ritual. His prayers were sincere appeals to the Father for the true realization of what He desired. “But, He was God,” you say. “Why did He have to pray at all?” “Couldn’t He have just declared what He wanted and, “shazam!” it would have appeared?”

Seems logical, considering how often Jesus simply spoke to heal the sick, to deliver the possessed and oppressed and to raise the dead. But there is a unique difference to this prayer. In every instance where the works of the devil were manifest in the lives of people Jesus exercised His greater authority and drove them out. But unity is a work of the Holy Spirit in the lives of His Church. Unity, oneness, singleness of mind and heart, does not come by demand or commandment. It is in large part determined by the freewill and obedience of every believer. If we are to be “One” while we wait for the coming of the Lord, we will do it only by a decisive, determined act of our wills.

We can be one. We need not be divided by denominational identities, racial identities, religious traditions, sectarian biases, or liturgical posturing of self-determined superiorities of spiritual knowledge.

Whoever thinks that he alone has THE “hotline” to the throne of God to know exclusively all that can be known either by himself or by His Church or smoother exclusive group is missing the whole purpose for the Body of Christ. Neither is oneness with Christ a matter of wrapping our collective arms around each other regardless of heresies or false doctrines. It is, in fact, a submission to live our lives in unity with and dependence upon the Holy Spirit revealing Himself and the WORD to our hearts and treating all with respect and love, sowing kindness and compassion whenever possible and defend sign the cause of the weak and powerless whenever and wherever we can

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Now the Holy Spirit is not found in the places of the works of men’s hands, but in the hearts of all who, with child-like faith, receive the truth and believe it without wrath or doubting. When love prevails over doubts and fears, where there is an earnest desire in the hearts of the believers to please God and not men, when men desire to see every work of God among His people prosper and succeed, regardless of who’s leadership stewards it, then, unity in the Body of Christ will be realized.

That day will come. Jesus has prayed that it would and so it shall be. Indeed it has already begun. Men and women of widely divergent Christian traditions are gathering together to worship and proclaim Christ with unity in the bond of peace and brotherly love. Let us all pray this prayer with Jesus and do all that we can to unify the body of Christ and resist those things that separate, divide and diminish us.

“Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are.” John 17:11


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