Unity in the Church

November 22, 2021

Spend time in prayer and silence with God, asking Him to meet with you and speak to you.

John 17:20-23

“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in Me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as You are in Me and I am in you. May they also be in Us so that the world may believe that You have sent Me. I have given them the glory that you gave Me, that they may be one as We are one. I in them and You in Me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved Me.”

Romans 6:5

If we have been united with Him like this in His death, we will certainly also be united with Him in His resurrection.


In John chapter seventeen, we find Jesus in the upper room the night before His crucifixion. John records a long prayer that Jesus prayed that night. In the above text, Jesus transitions from praying for His disciples to praying for “those who will believe.” He was praying for His future bride, the church! That would be us! He has us in mind long before we ever existed. Notice that He prays specifically for unity. In his commentary on the book of John, J.V. McGee writes, “This prayer has been answered. The church is an organic unity. Believers are one in Christ, for the church is one body.”

According to Jesus’ prayer, if we would manifest this unity to the world, the world would be more drawn in by this Good News about Jesus. Too often, the world sees believers hating and attacking each other over secondary or trivial issues. This kind of unity can only be accomplished through the Holy Spirit. Why did Jesus pray this? He knew that because of our flesh we would struggle to experience and express the same unity that He experiences with the Father.

Before there can be corporate unity, there must first be personal unity. This is what Paul writes about in Romans chapter six. When we put our faith in Christ, we are united with Him in His death and resurrection. If there is to be unity in the church, each of us must access our own spiritual standing before God. You are either united with Christ, or you are not! You either identify with Christ, or you do not!

Questions to Ponder

What does unity look like and how do we achieve this? Are you united with Christ? What did Jesus mean when He prayed that we would be one as He is one with the Father? How do you identify with Christ in your daily life?

Spend some time in prayer meditating on what God revealed to you today.