On the night before his death, Jesus prayed three prayers recorded in John 17 – one for himself, one for his disciples, and one for his future disciples (us). And in this third prayer, Jesus pleads with God to make his followers one – that they would be brought to complete unity. And this would indicate to the world that Jesus wasn’t a fraud. Unity and love are the thrust of this teaching because it was the thrust of Jesus’s prayer on our behalf. And as we understand that God is not a God of uniformity, but a God of unity, we’ll understand the dignity of difference and how to love on another well in the midst of our differences so our unity can bear witness to the love and legitimacy of Jesus Christ in the midst of a highly divided world.
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