“That We May Be One”

Brant Gardner

The purified twelve are “those whom thou hast given me out of the world.” Apparently this purification was a preliminary to becoming one with Jesus and the Father.

· Jesus prays in behalf of the twelve that “I might be in them as thou, Father, art in me, that we may be one” (v. 23).

· Jesus then approaches the twelve and blesses them (v. 25).

· The twelve are transformed and glow with white light (v. 25).

· Jesus again prays, thanking the Father for purifying them (vv. 27–29).

· Jesus prays that they may be one (v. 29).

· Jesus returns to the twelve and “smile[s] upon them” (v. 30).

· Jesus prays for a third time, uttering things that cannot be written (v. 32).

This sequence of actions and blessings culminate in the desired goal: The twelve are “in him” and Jesus is “in” the Father. Jesus’s smile clearly communicated joy in the twelve’s faith. His third prayer—things that could not be spoken or written—suggests that they experienced true oneness, thus prompting Jesus’s prayer of gratitude that events had happened as he had prayed.

Although this precise event is not recorded in other scriptures, it would not be surprising if the apostles had the same experience after Christ’s resurrection. Still, Jesus declares that the event is unprecedented (v. 36).

Second Witness: Analytical & Contextual Commentary on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 5