With John 17, we have Jesus praying before He enters into the full brunt of His Passion, which begins the very next chapter. Here, in 3 parts, Jesus prays for Himself, His disciples, and for all who will believe in the future. That’s where Jesus prayed for me! The first 5 verses constitute Jesus’ prayer for Himself. In it, He speaks of His personal divine authority to impart eternal life in verse 2, and of His role as #4, the Savior, by completing the work the Father gave Him to do; that work of which we will read of in Chapters 18 thru 20. That work, of course, is the two elements of #5, the Gospel; His death and resurrection. The result, as seen right here, is the two-fold mention of eternal life, imparted at the moment of #8, the New Birth, and resulting in its being forever lived out in #10, the Kingdom. Verse 3 is as great a summation of what it’s all about, as any. That we may know the Father, and Jesus Christ. We were meant for fellowship with the Divine! By believing on Jesus Christ, we enter into that fellowship, and They enter into us!
With verses 7 thru 19, Jesus then prays for His disciples. In it, we find matters of #9, the New Life in Christ, and particularly the matter of #7, Believe. Jesus gave from the Father, and the disciples received and believed in verses 6 thru 8! His first concern for His first disciples was for their protection and safety in the world, in verses 9 thru 12. From there, Jesus prays for their joy, their spiritual protection from Satan, and for their sanctification; a setting apart unto God, to live above the world, in holiness! All these are matters that pertain to #9, the New Life in Him! Note the role of the Holy Bible in the matter of the believer’s sanctification in verse 17! Get into God’s Word! Get God’s Word into YOU!!!
With the final passage, verses 20 thru 26, Jesus prays for those who would later believe the Apostle’s and their message. We could say the Book of Acts, coming up next, is in answer to this very prayer here! It also encompasses all who truly believe today. Jesus was thinking of me, when He prayed this prayer. This is The Lord’s Prayer! It begins with this absolute necessity to #7, Believe on Jesus, and goes on into #9, New Life matters such as unity among all His true believers. This unity begins and ends with this concept of the Father and of Jesus taking up a real residence inside the Born Again believer on Jesus Christ. If you have come to truly believe on the Jesus of the New Testament, God took up residence right inside of you, forgiving all your sin debt against Him, and giving you the gift of eternal life! This will be lived out with Him in the glory of His #10, Kingdom, so He promises in verse 24. The chapter closes on a very high note, with verse 26, meditate upon that, and be filled with the hope of the joy verse 13 held out to us! It’s what the Book is all about!
Harold F Crowell