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John Chapter 17
This is the longest recorded prayer of Jesus while He was on this earth.
Jesus prayed many other prayers and we know that He spent much time in prayer and communion with His heavenly Father. Perhaps He prayed many lengthy prayers but this prayer is what God sent by His Holy Spirit to give to us.
This prayer contains seven petitions; two of them refer to Jesus and the other five are regarding His disciples.
The two referring to Jesus are in verses 1 & 5;
1. That Jesus may be glorified by the Father so He can glorify the Father, John 17:1
2. Jesus earthly ministry is coming to a close. He asks to be restored to the glory He had before He came to the earth.
The prayers for His disciples are in verses 11,15,17,21,24
1. Vs 11; Prayer for the safety of His followers.
2. Vs 15; Prayer for protection of believers from the evil one.
3. Vs 17; Prayer for the sanctification of believers. Sanctification = to consecrate; to make holy.
4. Vs 21; Prayer for the spiritual unity of believers.
5. Vs 24; Prayer that the believers may be with Him in Heaven to behold and to share His glory.
Verses 11 & 21: Oneness, in this context, speaks of God’s Devine power working and operating in the hearts and lives of Christians. This deals with unity in the local New Testament Church.
Unity between Jew and Gentile; unity between the classes of people; the races of people.
When Christians dwell together in unity, peace and brotherly love, the world will begin to take note that we are different and that we have been with Jesus.
When the unsaved see factions; disturbances; bickering and division among church members, they soon declare that they are just as good, if not better than the folks who go to church.
John 17:3; Eternal life: This takes us to the purpose of John’s Gospel John 20:31.
This entire prayer is characterized in the statements of these two verses: John 17:4-5.
1. I have finished
2. I have glorified thee
3. I have manifested
4. I have given
5. While I was in the world
6. Now come I to thee
7. Where I am
Jesus prays for special intercession for the believers.
1. Vs 9: “I pray for them” Luke 22:32.
Every believer should have great joy in knowing that Jesus Christ prays for them.
2. Vs 9: Jesus prays for believers in contrast to the world = the unsaved.
Jesus died on the Cross to make salvation possible for all sinners; He lives to make intercession for the saved. Jesus does a special work for believers. He is our Mediator; our High priest. He intercedes for the saved in a special way that he does not for unbelievers. II Timothy 2:5
3. Vs 10: The people, who are saved, in Christ Jesus, also belong to God. Those who belong to God also belong to Jesus.
4. Vs 10: “I am glorified in them.” Christ’s glory here upon the earth was manifested by his disciples. It is also to be manifested by all believers. This is a great inspiration to serve the Saviour.
5. Vs 11: Jesus is getting ready to leave this world. The hour is near for His crucifixion etc.
As He prays, Jesus commits His disciples to the Father’s care. He also asks that they might be united in the purpose of getting the Gospel to the world. Acts 4:32; Acts 2:32; John 13:1.
6. Vs 11: “Holy Father” The word “Holy” points to and describes God’s character. The root meaning of the word in the Greek means: separation. This signifies that God is completely removed from all evil. God is also removed from evil and elevated high above all evil and sin. James 1:13
7. Vs 12: All the saved are and have been kept by Jesus in God’s Name. None of them have ever been lost.
Kept is used two times in this verse. 1st time, the meaning is: “preserved.”
The 2nd time, the meaning is: “guarded.” Guarded as the shepherd guards his sheep or as a soldier guards a treasure.
Judas was never given to Jesus: John 6:70; John 13:27; Luke 22:3.
The word “but,” a conjunction. The meaning is: Among the company of disciples and believers, there was one who was lost; unsaved; never saved.
“Perdition,” Ruin or loss (physical, spiritual or eternal): damnable, perish, waste.
John 6:37; John 10:27-29.
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