Today’s chapter is a continuation of yesterday’s reading. After a lengthy discussion with his disciples about the events that are coming, Jesus prays. Jesus prays. I think there’s no other testament to the importance of prayer than the fact that Jesus prayed.
His prayer is broken into three parts in this Gospel and it’s his longest prayer that was ever recorded.
He begins by praying for himself. He tells God that he knows that the time has come to “Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you.” He refers to God as, Father, a term he uses 122 times in this Gospel. He acknowledges that God has given him authority over all people so that he may give them eternal life.
Notice here that Jesus was given authority over all people. It doesn’t say some people. God gave Jesus authority over all of humanity. He states very plainly here that eternal life is: “They may know you, the only true God and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.” He then says that he has brought God glory. His mission was never self-centered. He finally asks God to return him to his previous position of glory, to exchange humiliation for glorification.
He only spends five short verses praying for himself. With all that he knows is coming, I find that remarkable. Maybe we should all take note here. He quickly moves on to praying for his disciples.
As he prays for his disciples, he mentions three things that they did; they accepted his teaching, (unlike the Pharisees). They knew that Jesus was of a divine origin and they believed. He is praying for them specifically and not for the world, because they have chosen a different path, to follow him and believe.
The only prayer he can pray for the world at this moment is to be less worldly. The term world is used 18 times in this prayer.
He prays for unity, that they may be as one. Unity is so important in Christianity, but something that the universal church really struggles with. If Jesus, prayed for it, it’s something we really should strive for.
Jesus asks for their continued protection after he leaves. He says he hasn’t lost any of the ones trusted to him except for Judas. He asks God not to take them out of the world, but to protect them from the evil one, (Satan). Jesus has acknowledged the existence of Satan frequently. It would be wise for us to do the same. Not acknowledging his existence doesn’t make him less of a threat. God’s protection is enough, but we must seek it.
He ends this section by asking God to sanctify the disciples by the truth. God’s word is truth. I read this to say that we really need to make an effort to read and understand the scripture to be wholly sanctified with truth.
The last section of this prayer is for all believers, (that’s us!) Jesus prays for all who WILL believe through the disciples’ message, (the Gospels) and he prays for our unity, (the unity of all Christians). The unity of all believers should have an effect on those outside. The love and unity of Christians should be so bright that others want to be a part of it.
Jesus then says he wants all believers to be with him and to see him in glory. He ends it by saying that he has made his followers know God and will continue to, so that they will have God’s love for Jesus in them and Jesus himself, in them . He ends his prayer there, with words of love.
What do you think about today’s reading? I’d love to hear from you.
Have an awesome day!