|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
17:20-23 Our Lord especially prayed, that all believers might be as one body under one head, animated by one soul, by their union with Christ and the Father in him, through the Holy Spirit dwelling in them. The more they dispute about lesser things, the more they throw doubts upon Christianity. Let us endeavour to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace, praying that all believers may be more and more united in one mind and one judgment. Thus shall we convince the world of the truth and excellence of our religion, and find more sweet communion with God and his saints.
Verse 22. - Our Lord now proceeds to record how he has already contributed to produce this result. I also - very emphatic - have given to them - that is, to my disciples - the glory which thou gavest me. Numerous interpretations of this "glory" have been suggested, as e.g., the glory into which he is about to enter in his glorified body; but the emphatic perfect δέδωκα, in connection with the ἐδωκάς, viz.: "I have given and am now and still giving," renders this improbable. Meyer, who does not accept Baumgarten-Crusius's view that διδόναι here means "to destine," yet comes very much to the same thought, and regards it as the heavenly glory of which he had eternal experience, and would ultimately share with his people. But the view variously set forth by Oldhausen, Hengstenberg, Maldonatus, Bengel, Tholuck, Moulton, and Godet appears to be in full harmony with the context, viz. the glory of the supernatural life of Divine Sonship and self-sacrificing love as of the very essence of God. This glory that he should taste death for every man, this glory of nature and character as the incarnate Head of a new humanity, I have given to them, in order that they may be one, living in and for each other, even as we are one. The contrast between his own relation to the Father and theirs is most wonderfully maintained. The union between the Father and Son is once more made the type, in his own unique consciousness, of the union among men who have received as his gift the eternal life and glory of a supernatural love. This is more evident from what follows.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And the glory which thou gavest me,.... Not the glory of his deity; this is the same with his Father, what he has in right of nature, and not by gift; nor can it be communicated to creatures; this would be to make them one in the Godhead, as the three are one, which is not the design of the expression in the close of the verse: nor his mediatorial glory, which he had with the Father before the world began; this indeed was given him by the Father, but is not given to the saints: nor the glory, of working miracles; which glory Christ had, and which, as man, he had from the Father, and in which his own glory was manifested; this he gave to his disciples; but all that are his have not had it, and some have had it who are none of his: rather the Gospel is meant, which is glorious in its author, matter and subject, in its doctrines, in the blessing: grace it reveals, and promises it contains, and in the efficacy and usefulness of it to the souls of men. This was given to Christ, and he gave it to his disciples:
I have given them; as he did the words that were given to him, John 17:8,
that they may be one, even as we are one; for the Gospel was given to the apostles, and still is to the ministers of it, to bring men to the unity of the faith, for the perfecting of the saints, and the edifying of the body of Christ: or else the fulness both of grace and glory, which is in Christ's hands for his people, is here designed. This is one considerable branch of the glory of Christ, as Mediator, to be full of grace and truth; this was given him by the Father, and is what he communicates to his; even the Spirit, and all sorts of grace, and every supply of it; and which greatly contributes to the union of the saints among themselves: yea, eternal happiness is often signified by glory; and this is given to Christ; he has it in his hands to give to others; and he does give it, a view of it, a right unto it, a meetness for it, a pledge of it, some foretastes of it, and a kind of a possession of it; for the saints have it already, at least in him; and he will give them the actual enjoyment of it, and this in order to their consummate and perfect union together, as a glorious church without spot or wrinkle, or any such thing.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
22. And the glory which thou gavest—hast given.
me I have given them, that they may be one, even as we are one—The last clause shows the meaning of the first. It is not the future glory of the heavenly state, but the secret of that present unity just before spoken of; the glory, therefore, of the indwelling Spirit of Christ; the glory of an accepted state, of a holy character, of every grace.
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