We are in for a treat today. We are going to study how Jesus prays for Himself, His disciples and for future believers. This is us my friends! Jesus prays for you and me. This passage in John comes right before He is betrayed and arrested.
Jesus has now ended His teachings to His disciples. He ends His teaching with a shout of victory. Review 16:33 and take note that Jesus already knew the outcome to His story. “I have overcome the world.” God knows what lies ahead. Today’s study is Jesus talking with God before His main event was going to take place.
Jesus was going to suffer much to save you and me.
He knew what lay before Him and He needed to talk with God. We do not know what lies ahead for us which means we really need to pray, like constantly! Jesus was dependent upon God for everything. We are to be dependent on Jesus for everything. It might be wise to go back a few blogs and restudy John 15:1-17 and be reminded of what it means to remain in Christ; to abide.
Go ahead and read John 17: 1-26. Jesus shares His heart with us. Let’s see what we can learn from today’s study. There are three sections to His prayer.
Section 1 is verses 1-5. Jesus prays for Himself. He states that the “hour has come”. The reason why He came to earth was now at hand. Jesus asks God to glorify Him so He can give glory back to God. This unity of glory is important for us to know and remember. We exist to bring glory to God through His Son. This is our calling.
ADDED INSIGHT: Read Romans 11:36, 16:27, 1 Corinthians 10:31 and Ephesians 1:14 for deeper clarity on this.
QUESTION: Look at verse 2. What did God give Jesus? Was it over some people or everyone?
Jesus speaks very plainly in His prayer to God. His words are simple and honest. We are to be the same way when we talk with God. God loves it when we speak from the heart.
QUESTION: How do we obtain eternal life, see verse 3? Don’t miss this. Many do.
Jesus brings glory to God by completing the work that God gave Him to do. It is the same for us. God has given us work to do while on earth. The question is, are we willing to live by Jesus’ words and live out what He is telling us?
By looking at verse 5, we can see how Jesus is looking forward to being reunited with His Father. What joy must have exploded in heaven when Jesus returned home! Joy explodes each time one of Jesus’ followers enter into heaven! Right now, there must be one great party going on as God is ushering in His saints on a daily basis.
Section 2 is verses 6-19. Jesus prays for His disciples. Look at verses 6-8. Jesus describes some attributes of His followers. They are chosen by God to follow Jesus. They have kept His word. They have understanding that everything they have received are gifts from God. They have received and accepted the words of Christ. They believe Jesus.
QUESTION: How many of these attributes are true about you?
Jesus mentions that His prayer is not for the world.
QUESTION: Why would Jesus say this? Who is it for? See verse 9-10.
Jesus now states very clearly, “Now I am departing from the world.” And He continues saying that His followers are staying put. Jesus tells of some very sweet words to encourage His friends.
QUESTION: From verse 11, what are His sweet words?
God’s love is so amazing, isn’t it? We are protected by the power of Jesus’ name and believers are united together just like God and Jesus are!
We are UNITED IN LOVE.
Jesus continues on stating that while He was on earth, He protected them by the power of His name. He guarded them so that no one is lost. Stop and bathe yourself in these truths. What is God saying to you?
Look at the last part of section 2, verses 13-19. Jesus prepared them. He prepares us also. We are never left to figure things out on our own. Because Jesus was with them, they were filled with joy. Do you remember what we studied last time? We have exuberant joy when we have Christ!
Jesus gave them His Word so they will know the way home. We know the way. God gave us the scriptures. We just have to believe, trust and obey.
Jesus prays about the hatred the world has for Him. Our world operates under a different set of rules; evil ones. Jesus came to call people out from it. Notice how we are kept safe from the evil one when we follow Jesus. As believers, we are in the world but not of the world.
Jesus asks God to make believers holy. We become holy by following His word. We are to be students of the Bible. We cannot live for Christ without knowing Truth.
QUESTION: What is Jesus wanting to do with His disciples, as well as each of us; see verse 18?
QUESTION: How are we made holy; see verse 19?
Section 3 is verses 20-26. Jesus prays for us. Isn’t this amazing? Jesus has the ability to pray for people who weren’t even born yet!?! Think about this, when Jesus was on the cross, you, yes you, were on His mind. What a crazy love God has for wayward man. What an amazing love that transcends time. What a complete love that meets the needs of every generation!
Look at what Jesus hopes for His believers. He prays that we will all be one; united in love. Notice what happens when believers unite…
“The world will believe You sent Me.”
Also, look at Galatians 3:26-28. It says, “For you are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus. And all who have been united with Christ in baptism have put on Christ, like putting on new clothes. There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male or female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus.”
God is giving us the answer to all our problems that we face in this world. When we walk united, as one, we have great power to overcome anything! God gives us the same glory that He gave Jesus.
QUESTION: What will we experience when we follow Jesus; see verses 22-23?
We will have PERFECT UNITY.
Now, look at how much Jesus loves us. Jesus tells God that He wants believers to be where He is at. When we remain in Him, we will be able to see the things of God clearly. Review John 1:14 to be reminded of the unity between God and Jesus.
Jesus ends His prayer by stating an important attribute of God.
QUESTION: How does Jesus refer to His Father; see verse 25? What do the disciples know?
GO DEEPER IN TRUTH: Read another one of Jesus’ prayers. Go to Matthew 11:25-30 and what do you learn that goes along with this study?
Jesus reiterates how the world does not know God. This should not surprise us. Study history and discover how wayward man really is. We are in desperate need of a Savior. We have been since Adam and Eve got kicked out of Eden.
QUESTION: What does God reveal to us, according to verse 26? Is this just a one time thing or does Jesus continue to reveal His Father to us? Then what happens?
God’s love is complete within us when we follow Jesus and abide by His ways. Jesus continuously reveals God to us. We are never alone. He truly is the bridge that unites us with God.
Jesus is sending His love to everyone for He is love. We will see the extent of His great love in the coming blogs as we finish up the book of John.