“And the glory thou gavest me I have given them: that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me. “ (John 17:22)
This verse, as well as all of chapter seventeen, speaks of our union with Christ and other believers. Speaking to His Father, Jesus compares it to the union between the two of them (“…that they may be one, even as we are one…”). And as the verse indicates, it’s a glorious union. He goes on to say, “I in them, and thou in me.” God was in Jesus, and Jesus is in you and me. I hope I’m not being sacrilegious when I say that this brings to my mind those little wooden nesting dolls. You know, inside the outermost one is another, smaller one, and inside that one a smaller one yet. But in our case, the sizes are miraculously reversed, because inside of us is Jesus and inside Jesus is God.
We’re tempted to say that such verses are “mystical,” but the Bible has another word for it. “To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col.1:27). Not mystical, but a “mystery,” something once concealed, but now revealed. And the verse makes it abundantly clear that having Jesus Christ “nested” within us, if you will, is the only hope you and I have of going to Heaven. We are one with Him; and wherever He is, is where we’ll be.
Jesus also says in this verse in John that he intends for this union to be mirrored, as well, in our relationship as believers to one another. There should be a spiritual intimacy in the Body of Christ that transcends what this world calls friendship. It’s a family thing. This is why when one of us suffers, we all should feel pain; and when one of us excels, we all should feel pride (1Cor.12:26). We are not “joined at the hip”; we’re joined at the heart!
When I speak of such things, especially my own union with Christ, I must acknowledge, I’ve told you more than I understand, and less far than I deserve. But I know that this glorious union with Him is who I am. And there is no doubt in my mind…..the best of me is Him.