One Church

One Church
From the Aug. 17th reading
Whose kingdom are we building anyway?
READ: John 17:20-23
John 17:20-21a
“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” (NIV)
  • He wasn’t just praying for His disciples
  • He was praying for us – those who would believe through their message.
  • “That all of them may be one.” (Vs. 21)


  • Jesus knew that we would follow
  • We need to be as one in our church
  • Our churches should work as one
  • No more competition!
  • We should work together for His Kingdom!
Just recently I met with some pastors in our area to talk about our upcoming event Praise in the Park. It was so refreshing to sit and talk and pray together. We are from four churches all within a few miles of each other and we weren’t concerned about competition or stealing members from one another’s church. We did discuss possible trades and future draft picks though! While praying one of the pastors prayed that this event was not about building our kingdoms, but about building His Kingdom. When this was said there was a resounding “Amen!”. We were all in agreement.
You see this was Jesus’ prayer. Not that we would all be uniform or that we would all be indoctrinated into one institutional church. But that we would love one another! Jesus’ desire was, and still is, for us to work together for one purpose – TO MAKE DISCIPLES!
One author says it this way: Jesus requested unity for future believers (cf. vv. 11, 22). This verse is a favorite of promoters of the present ecumenical movement. Admittedly the divided church is in many ways a scandal. The cure, however, is not institutional union. Jesus was not praying for the unity of a single, worldwide, ecumenical church in which doctrinal heresy would be maintained along with orthodoxy.[i]
Jesus also wasn’t talking about a concept that is found today called Universalism. Universalism is focused around the idea of universal reconciliation. Also known as universal salvation, it is a doctrine stating that every human soul will ultimately be reconciled to God because of divine love and mercy. [ii] Scripture clearly teaches that it is by faith alone that we are saved and can have any hope of a relationship with God. So when it comes to working with other churches we need to be careful who we join up with doctrinally, but it does not mean we are to build a wall around ourselves either.
Unfortunately, many churches take this to mean that they aren’t to team up with any other denomination but theirs. This kind of feeling or practice isn’t anything knew. In fact, there was disunity found among Jesus’ disciples. Warren Wiersbe gives us a glimpse: “The disciples had often exhibited a spirit of selfishness, competition, and disunity; and this must have broken the Saviour’s heart. I wonder how He feels when He sees the condition of the church today!”[iii] It is sad when we consider all that Jesus must have intended for us when He prayed this prayer, and then we see what we have today.
We need to find more ways to combine our forces to break into the enemy’s line of defense. To steal away those that are broken and enslaved in this sin sick world. We need to join hands and find ways to worship together as One voice and One church. Where people can witness our love for one another, and our love for our Savior!
Ask God to show you where you have become prejudice against other like-minded churches? Have you been guilty of being critical towards other churches or pastors? If so ask for forgiveness. Find ways to encourage others from other churches.
Each week’s Monday Motivation is taken from the reading schedule found in the Life Journal. If you are ready for the next step in your discipleship, then order yours today or see me for a copy.
Event: Praise in the Park. September 15th at Memory Park in Chino Valley, AZ. For more information go to
If you would like help in growing in your faith, or if you would like to know how to have faith in Him, then please contact us at (928)636-2949 or email me at
[i] Blum, E. A. (1985). John. In J. F. Walvoord & R. B. Zuck (Eds.), The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures (Vol. 2, p. 333). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.
[ii] Wikipedia – Universalism
[iii] Wiersbe, W. W. (1996). The Bible exposition commentary (Vol. 1, p. 371). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.

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