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Sunday, March 06, 2011

Prayers in the Bible: Christ, John 17

1) I would submit that this, the so-called High Priestly prayer of Jesus, is the most important prayer in the Bible. It is in John 17:
1a “ . . .Glorify your Son, that your Son may also glorify you; 17:2 even as you gave him authority over all flesh, he will give eternal life to all whom you have given him. 17:3 This is eternal life, that they should know you, the only true God, and him whom you sent, Jesus Christ. . . . 17:6 I revealed your name to the people whom you have given me out of the world. They were yours, and you have given them to me. They have kept your word. . . . 17:9 I pray for them. I don’t pray for the world, but for those whom you have given me, for they are yours. . . . 17:11b Holy Father, keep them through your name which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are. . . . 17:13 But now I come to you, and I say these things in the world, that they may have my joy made full in themselves. 17:14 I have given them your word. The world hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. 17:15 I pray not that you would take them from the world, but that you would keep them from the evil one. 17:16 They are not of the world even as I am not of the world. 17:17 Sanctify them in your truth. Your word is truth. 17:18 As you sent me into the world, even so I have sent them into the world. . . . 17:20 Not for these only do I pray, but for those also who believe in me through their word, 17:21 that they may all be one; even as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be one in us; that the world may believe that you sent me. 17:22 The glory which you have given me, I have given to them; that they may be one, even as we are one; 17:23 I in them, and you in me, that they may be perfected into one; that the world may know that you sent me, and loved them, even as you loved me. 17:24 Father, I desire that they also whom you have given me be with me where I am, that they may see my glory, which you have given me, for you loved me before the foundation of the world. 17:25 Righteous Father, the world hasn’t known you, but I knew you; and these knew that you sent me. 17:26 I made known to them your name, and will make it known; that the love with which you loved me may be in them, and I in them.”
There are a number of features in the prayer, excerpted above. First, the prayer begins with adoration. But most of it is supplication -- making requests to God. (See my previous post on Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving and Supplication -- four elements of prayer.) Second, the supplication is for Christ's followers, at the time, and on into the future. (This is consistent with the main emphasis of prayer in the New Testament.) Third, the supplication is for purity, unity, and love.

This is part of a series. The most recent previous post is here.

Thanks for reading.

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