By Robert Halsey Pine
“Righteous Father, the world does not know you, but I know you; and these know that you have sent me. I made your name known to them, and I will make it known, so that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.” (John 17:20-26 NRSV).
Jesus is tying things together in this prayer before His disciples. His prayer to God is a kind of report to His Father that is instructional to believers. He speaks to God as a father and partner for whom He is on a mission. He recognizes that the world does not know His Father but that He, Christ Jesus, has made His Father known to the faithful that God has sent Him. He promises God that He will place His love-filled self in these that have been sent to Him.
This prayer from Jesus describes and becomes a spiritual dynamo that the world has never seen. Taken with the Resurrection of Christ, Jesus generated and continues to generate an unceasing and unending power that through Christ and the few that God sent Him, sweeps across the Earth gaining strength day by day as it converts and takes in the new faithful. This is the gift from God that keeps on giving. It is the life, death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is truly with us through Jesus and the Holy Spirit.
The beauty part of this is that we, in our time, can experience and help perpetuate God’s awesome power by allowing Jesus to fill us with Himself, which is the love of God made man. The gospel story is the path to the wonders of God’s creation. This is a creation that is ever expanding as the Spirit takes in new believers. Scientists say that the universe is expanding, and so it must in order to make room for God’s ever-growing kingdom.
We must continue the work of Christ in our time. We must hand out candles, and with the light that we have received from Him, we are called to use our glowing candle to light the candles of others all over the world. His small fire started as a spark and is day by day lighting up the world. We must love Him, and all things will be done through His will.
Robert Halsey Pine was born at Newark, Ohio in 1943. He is a graduate of Northeastern University and completed the program of Theological Education by Extension: Education for Ministry, School of Theology, the University of the South.