Remember how Jesus encouraged his disciples to take heart? Encouraging them of the Father’s love and the Holy Spirit’s presence? Now he goes on in John 17.
I don’t know if I will get through all of John 17, but we’ll see how it goes eh? 🙂
Jesus had just finished telling the disciples to take heart because he has already overcome the world. Now he stops and lifts his eyes to heaven. He starts to pray.
First he calls upon the Lord to glorify him so that he can glorify him. Acknowledging the authority given him, his ability to grant eternal life to those who follow him (those who know God as the true and only God, and Jesus as his Son). Jesus has glorified God the Father on earth. He asks for the same back.
“Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you, 2 since you have given him authority over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him. 3 And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. 4 I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do. 5 And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed.
Jesus continues his conversation with God his Father. Explaining all that he has done. Talking about this people he has raised up for his Father.
6 “I have manifested your name to the people whom you gave me out of the world. Yours they were, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. 7 Now they know that everything that you have given me is from you. 8 For I have given them the words that you gave me, and they have received them and have come to know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me.
Intercession for Disciples
It is for them that he prays. They are his and they are God’s. And even though He is not of this world, the people, his people, the disciples they are of the world and they will need help. He gave them his word that they would be kept safe from the evil one. Jesus intercedes with the Father, pleading that he do what Jesus promised them… keep them safe.
9 I am praying for them. I am not praying for the world but for those whom you have given me, for they are yours. 10 All mine are yours, and yours are mine, and I am glorified in them. 11 And I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one. 12 While I was with them, I kept them in your name, which you have given me. I have guarded them, and not one of them has been lost except the son of destruction, that the Scripture might be fulfilled. 13 But now I am coming to you, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have my joy fulfilled in themselves. 14 I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 15 I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one. 16 They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 17 Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. 18 As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. 19 And for their sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth.
Intercession for All Believers
Jesus expands this prayer to include not only the disciples, but everyone who will come to faith in the Lord. Jesus prays that we might become one. One, just as God the Father and Jesus as one. He asks that we become perfectly one… and in the perfect oneness, the world might know the truth…that he, Jesus, was sent by God and of God’s love for the world.
20 “I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, 21 that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, 23 I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me. 24 Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. 25 O righteous Father, even though the world does not know you, I know you, and these know that you have sent me. 26 I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.”
Can’t you just see Jesus’ heart? His love and concern for his people? His humble, yet knowledgeable approach to Father God? This prayer is called the High Priestly prayer. The priests would intercede with God on behalf of the people, offering up sacrifices and making things right between the people and God. Jesus here, intercedes with God, calling him to action in protecting and loving his people. I read this prayer and I see his love …. reaching out to God, calling up that relationship, showing God’s glory, calling God to glorify him, but in the end… to take care of their people. Jesus will continue to do what he needs to do. Making sure that people know who God is, making sure that folks know of God’s love for them. Protect them Father God, Protect them. That is his plea.