“And I have declared to them Your Name, and will declare it ...” (John 17:26)

“And I have declared to them Your Name, and will declare it, that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.” (John 17:26)

Why do some translations omit 'Your Name'?

For this verse - the continuation of Jesus' open prayer to the Supreme Being - the New King James Version has been selected. This is because the New International Version omits the phrase "Your Name" in this portion of Jesus' prayer. The original Greek clearly states ὄνομα (onoma), which means "name."

Why have the NIV translators done this? They do not realize Jesus' purpose relating to the glorification of the Supreme Being's Holy Names. This, in fact, was a central component of Jesus' teachings.

We can, in fact, see this aspect of Jesus' teachings throughout the four Gospels. We can also see that calling upon God's Name and praising God's Names has been professed throughout the Biblical scriptures.

Why did Jesus say he 'declared to them Your Name'?

Why did Jesus feel that praising God's Names is so important, and why would Jesus need to "declare" God's Name to his students ("they")?

The word "declared" in this verse comes from the Greek word γνωρίζω (gnōrizō), which means, according to the lexicon, "to make known" and "be recognized." So Jesus is talking about making God's Holy Name known to them. In this context, this means he is glorifying God's Names. Why is this important?

Because the praising of God's Names is the pathway to coming to know and love the Supreme Being. Within the physical world, God reveals Himself through His representatives and through His Holy Names as glorified by His representatives.

God reveals Himself through these vehicles because these relate to devotion.

You see, God is not a 'thing' or an 'it.' God is a Person. He is the Supreme Person. And it is because He is a Person that we can love Him.

We can only love a Person. A person might say "I love that rock" but that is not real love. Real love can only be exchanged between persons.

The Supreme Being is reached through devotion because He connects with us through love. Love means caring for the other person. God loves each of us, and we can only become connected with Him when we love Him. This means we have to care for Him, and this means we have to first come to know Him.

Is this about knowing God?

In the physical world, we typically think of "knowing" someone as becoming aware of a person's habits, or what they do in their spare time, or where they were born and so forth. These are material facts. They are related to the status of the physical body.

In the spiritual realm, "knowing" someone relates to knowing their heart. Knowing their goals and objectives. Knowing what they like or don't like. This type of knowledge is gained through empathy - caring about someone enough to want to know them.

The only way to come to know God is through an introduction by His representative because God's representative already loves God. He already has a connection with God via his love for God. Therefore, that person is qualified to introduce us.

Furthermore, the Supreme Being appears within the physical world on the lips of such a lover of God. When such a person glorifies the Supreme Being, and teaches about God, people become introduced via a subtle mechanism from within the heart - their spiritual selves become connected as their hearts are softened by the teachings of His representative.

And thus God reveals Himself through His glorification by His loving servants - in the form of His Holy Names.

What is duality?

Duality exists within the physical world, but is not present in the Supreme Being. For example, if a person is named John, that name is not the person. They are separate. John can change his name to Jim if he wants.

Duality exists within the physical world primarily because we are not these physical bodies. The fact that the physical body is different from us creates duality here. In the spiritual realm, individuals are themselves.

And the Supreme Being is Himself, and His Names are part of Himself. There is no duality between God's Names and God.

It is for this reason that Jesus is talking about the connection between God's Name, and the love that exists between Jesus and God, and Jesus' beloved students. The connection is love. They each love each other, and through that love, there is unity. This unity is based on love because when someone loves another, they want to please them. Their objectives become one and the same. Thus there is oneness between them through one wanting to please the other.

This unity is often confused with physical presence, as if when Jesus is saying "in them" he is meaning that he is physically inside of them. This is taking Jesus' words to a physical state not intended, as though Jesus is talking about crawling inside their bodies or something.

No. We are talking matters of the heart here. Love.

And we do have a modern expression that approaches the kind of figurative expression Jesus is using and has used before. For example, a person might say:

"He is in my heart."

When a person says this, they mean that they love and care deeply for that person. It is not as if the person has crawled inside their heart like a parasite or something. We are talking about love.

This is what Jesus is talking about. He is connecting the glorification of God with God's love for him, and Jesus' love for his students. He wants his students to share in this loving relationship.

And we can all participate in this love by glorifying the Names of the Supreme Being as Jesus did, praising Eloi, Yahweh, Elohim and Abba.

Jesus communicated the intention behind these teachings within his most important instruction:
“‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment." (Matt. 22:37-38)

*Here is the translation of this verse from Jesus' prayer from the Lost Gospels of Jesus:
"I have declared Your Name to them, and will continue to declare it; so that the love You have loved me with may be with them, and I may be with them.” (John 17:26)