“Father, I desire that they also, whom You have given Me, may be with Me where I am, to see My glory that You have given Me because you loved Me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, even though the world does not know You, I know You, and these know that You have sent Me. I have made known to them Your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which You have loved Me may be in them, and I in them” (Jn 17:24-26).
“Be with Me where I am” (vs 24) harkens back to John chapter 14 where Jesus speaks of going to prepare a place for us so “that where I am, there you may be also” (Jn 14:3). And in this place He has prepared for us, we will fully behold the glory of the Lamb, the glory of the Son of God, the glory of Jesus. This journey to experience the glory of God begins with believing that the Father sent the Son.
“That You have sent Me” (vs 25) is the most common phrase that Jesus uses in the book of John to identify Himself as the Son of God. Believing that God sent Jesus. Believing that He came to die in our place. Believing that He rose again sealing our redemption. This is how we cross over from death to life. “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life” (Jn 5:24). Here in John 17, Jesus acknowledges that His disciples believe. “They know that You sent Me.” They now belong to Jesus and the Father.
Jesus’ final petition to the Father in this chapter of prayer is centered on the love of God. This request goes to the very heart of God’s essence. Love is not one of God’s attributes. Love is His identity. This apostle simply writes it elsewhere as, “God is love” (I Jn 4:8).
What do we learn about God’s love in this passage? The Father loved the Son “before the foundation of the world” (vs 24). God’s love is eternal. And Jesus’ prayer is that this eternal, powerful, one-of-a-kind love will also inhabit His followers.
“That the love with which You have loved Me may be in them, and I in them” (vs 26). Jesus prays for God’s love to saturate us, to wash over and inside us. And in this verse, we see the path of how this happens. “I in them”. Christ in us is the only way for the love of God to be in us. We can’t find it on our own. We can’t manufacture this love by will-power and trying harder.
Because God is love and His Spirit lives in us, it only stands to reason the God’s supernatural love lives in us also. We are infused with His love. Our role? To let it out. To let it flow. To send love out into the world. Then the world will know the loving embrace of the Father.