26 January 2010

John 17 - Glory given and received

< John 16 | Index | John 18 >

In John 17 the time for teaching has finished, it is time for prayer. We have all been in situations where this is true. The glory of an evening rainbowWe can talk and talk but in the end if we want things to move forward we need to pray - for ourselves and for others. And this is precisely what Yahshua does; first for himself, then for others.

More particularly we need to pray when the situation is tough or desperate. Communication with others has to give way to communication with the Father who guides our paths and intervenes on our behalf. He is the One who hears and gives us what we ask (if we ask in Yahshua's name and in accordance with his will).

Notice that the Lord prays far less for himself than he does for his followers. Is there a lesson there for us too? We are likely to face tough times, but rarely as tough as those our Teacher and Master faced. Yet still his focus is on others. Even in praying for himself his focus is on the Father, the glory is for the Father. The Son asks for glory so that he can glorify the Father.

And there's a little reference to authority in verse 2, did you notice? The Son has been given authority over all people - all people. That includes Judas Iscariot, Caiaphas, and Pontius Pilate. Yahshua is the King of Kings, he has kingly authority even over Caesar. With a single word he could have escaped death! But true authority doesn't merely command men and women. Instead it commands respect in those who recognise it. What sort of authority do you and I have? Do we issue orders or do we earn respect? What a difference!

Next he prays for his followers, his apprentices. Some of them heard these words or they could not have been recorded. What did they make of them at the time? He confidently speaks of their faith and understanding even though just a short time before they were demonstrating considerable doubt and confusion. That is real trust! The Father told him it was so, it appeared as if it might not be so, and he prays with confidence knowing that the prayer has been answered. He asks for their protection and for their sanctification.

And then he tells us, a hundred generations later and every generation in between, that his prayer is also for us! Yahshua's prayer is that we would be one, and not just with one another but also with him and with the Father. Now surely this is utterly awesome! And not only that. The Father gave glory to the Son and now the Son has given that same glory to us! (verse 22). If that doesn't take your breath away, nothing will. We are to contain both the love that the Father has for the Son and we are to contain the Son himself.

Christ in us, the hope of glory!

< John 16 | Index | John 18 >

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