Jesus Makes the Father’s Love Known to Us



Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you. 

Jesus, I belong to you.

I lift up my heart to you.
I set my mind on you.
I fix my eyes on you.
I offer my body to you as a living sacrifice.

Jesus, we belong to you. 

Praying in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit, amen. 

John 17:26

“I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”


Several years ago some colleagues and I were touring Europe with a group of graduate students. I remember the day our little group walked into the Pantheon in Rome. The word pantheon means “of all gods.” While the historic purpose of the building is contested, when one walks in and sees the huge concrete dome and oculus, a circular window to the sky, it inspires a sense of awe. I remember thinking: So many gods to please. So little time

Can you imagine? It must have been exhausting to worship so many unpredictable gods at once. Jupiter having a bad day is bad news—for everyone.

The God revealed to us in Jesus—the Creator, the Father—is not moody or fickle (James 1:17). In fact, he is the very embodiment of love in its purest form (1 John 4:8). In John 17:26b, Jesus is speaking to the Father, with whom he is one. He says that he is making the Father known for a particular reason: “that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”

“That the love you have for me may be in them.” 

We don’t want to miss what’s happening here. The Lord of Union and Love is taking us to school again on what it means to be his witnesses in the world he loves (John 3:16).

The Father loves Jesus with a particular quality of love. Jesus wants the quality of that love to be in us. While the unfathomable quality of the Father’s divine love for Jesus may be beyond us, any parent who holds a child in their arms has begun to know at least one aspect of this love. Parental love, in its highest form, cares more deeply for that child than one’s own life. Every time I even see a picture of one of my children, my heart fills up. I would do anything for them. They are mine, and I am theirs. We are bonded in ways I will never be bonded with another human soul. 

The Father has this kind of love for the Son, though it is deeper and wider and more expansive in its tenderness and affection than you or I could ever imagine.

It is this quality of love that Jesus embodies in the gospels. In his baptismal waters, when the Father speaks, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased” (Matt. 3:17), Jesus is baptized in this kind of love. No force on earth could ever take that Trinitarian bond of love with the Father and the Spirit away from him. The Father’s love is settling, satisfying, fulfilling, and unmatched. 

Jesus lives in that love, and the Father’s love lives in him. And that is why Jesus is the most compelling person who has ever lived. He embodied the Father’s love. Amidst all the small “g” gods of history, not one is the pure embodiment of love. Only the Father is pure love, a quality of love revealed to us in Jesus (Col. 1:15). 

Through Jesus, we are awakened to the Father’s love. Jesus makes the Father and his love known. And experiencing the Father’s love embodied in Christ, according to verse 26, we find a desire rising in us to experience that love, to be one with that love, and have it take up residence within us. 

Jesus in us is the Father’s love in us. Followers of Jesus are the bearers of the Father’s transcendent quality of love to the world. “They will know we are Christians by our love,” goes the old song. If today you find yourself unsure how to respond to someone, try this: 

Be the love of the Father to them.

It is in you to do so, because Jesus—the embodiment of the Father’s love—is in you.


Lord Jesus, I am in you and you are in me. I want to know the love of the Father. By your presence in me, Jesus, let me be the love of the Father to all those who cross my path today. I want “to know this love” (Eph. 3:19) you have for me, and to share it with all I meet. In Christ Jesus, I pray, amen.


Have you ever had an experience of the Father’s love for you? How did that experience impact your life? How could you show that same love and goodness to others?

For the Awakening,
Dan Wilt 

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WHAT IS THIS? Wake-Up Call is a daily encouragement to shake off the slumber of our busy lives and turn our eyes toward Jesus. Each morning our community gathers around a Scripture, a reflection, a prayer, and a few short questions, inviting us to reorient our lives around the love of Jesus that transforms our hearts, homes, churches, and cities.

Comments and Discussion

2 Responses

  1. Have I ever had an experience of the Father’s love for me? Answer: It all depends on the definition of experience. If by experience, it implies some sort of overwhelming emotional feeling, no. But when I accidentally fell from a ladder while trimming a large tree limb, and broke my C 1 vertebrae, without either experiencing death or even partial paralysis; that in my opinion displayed His love for me. How did that impact my life? I’ve spent the last 25 years thoroughly trying to serve the Lord to the best of my ability, using what ever SG’s and talents that He’s endowed me with. His love for me, and in me is expressed through the various small group relationships that I’ve facilitated.

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