Scripture reading for May 28th: John 17:1-26
John records Jesus’ longest prayer that was written in Scripture. This prayer is a wonderful example of the heart of the Son of God. It is very instructive for us and shows how thoughtful Jesus was and how He prayed His way through the cross and for those who followed Him.
First, Jesus prayed for Himself and declared victory by faith in a full completion of the work that the Father had given Him to do. “Father, the time has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son may glorify You.”. . . “I have brought You glory on earth by completing the work You gave Me to do. And now, Father, glorify Me in Your presence with the glory I had with You before the world began.” (John 17:1, 4-5) Jesus desired to be back in the holy presence of His Father. He asked His Father to glorify Him with the glory He possessed before the world was formed. He understood that the time had come to finish the work and through prayer, declared it done!
Next Jesus prayed for His own disciples. He had been given these by the Father and had systematically revealed the Father and His word to them. Jesus declared to His Father that these disciples had accepted His word and believed that Jesus came from the Father. (John 17:6-19) “I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to You. Holy Father, protect them by the power of Your Name–the Name you gave Me–so that they may be one as We are One.” (John17:11) Jesus cared for His disciples and asked specifically for their protection while they were in the world. Jesus had sent them into the world as He had been sent by His Father. The world would hate them and the ‘evil one’ would persecute them.
“My prayer is not for them alone, I pray also for those who will believe in Me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as You are in Me and I am in You.” (John 17:20-21) Jesus specifically mentioned all who would come to faith, including us! He prayed for our unity in relationship with the Holy Trinity. His ultimate request was that we would be in His presence for all eternity to behold His glory! (John 17:34) Wow! What a Savior!