This witness, this evangel is the theme of the Lord’s prayer to His Father in John 17:20 & 23. This Union of Oneness that He is asking the Father to bring forth in His children is His Glorious Love, the very Love with which the Father Loved the Son before the foundation of the world!!! (Vs 24) In vs 20, His prayer for this Union is “that the world may believe that You sent Me.” In verse 23, a special entreaty is added, “that the world may know that you have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.”
It is the church’s failure to obey this commandment that has aborted the churches witness to the world. All the “gospel talk” in the world falls on deaf ears when it flows from the lips of a church that is marked by divisions, strife, and competition, and not by its Union with its’ Lord. John speaks to our rebuke in I John 4:7-12 “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God, and everyone who loves (as Christ loved) is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God Is Love. In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has seen God at any time. If we love one another, God abides in us, and His Love has been perfected in us.” And may I add, God is made visible to the World. Without this mandate at the core of our behavior, we have traveled the world making proselytes, counting noses and baptisms, and yet the world thinks that Christianity is just one of the three great monotheistic religions. No, the world has not discerned that the Father sent His Son by the love of His people. God’s Valentine has been kept under the wraps of our fleshly ambition, thinking we are doing God service.
“Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another FERVENTLY WITH A PURE HEART, having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the Word of God which lives and abides forever.” (I Peter 1:22-23) Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God—and the world needs to know that the Father sent His Son