“Now, Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.” (John 17:5)
John 17 must be considered the highest of high prayers, made just before Jesus went to the cross, and in it we find some of the richest nuggets of spiritual truth contained anywhere in the word of God. Among them we find a couple of statement in verse 4 which point to Jesus’ definite awareness of His Deity:
— The first is His phrase: “glorify Me together with Yourself” — This would be an incredibly brash prayer: glorify YOU together with God?! — who would have the gall to offer a prayer like that — unless He had indeed been “equal with God”, as Philippians 2 affirms?
— Then He adds: “with the glory which I had with You before the world was.” So Jesus asserts that He was “with God”, “before the world was.” Here He reinforces the teaching that before time began, He had already existed with God. As John 1:2 teaches, “He was in the beginning with God” and “was God” (:1)
It is hard to imagine stronger statements about the Deity of Jesus Christ — or the possible grounds of reasoning for those who claim that the New Testament doesn’t teach it!
“You must make your choice. Either this man was and is the Son of God; or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.”
(C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, Chapter 3, p. 56)