Christ’s Prayer to God before His Departure
Part 2, Preparing for Easter Series
We come now to John 17:1-26. The departure scene continues. In chapter 17 of the Gospel of John, we see Jesus praying to God before His arrest. Some of you might be wondering, if Jesus is divine, why did He pray to God? Prayer is communicating with God and prayer demonstrates relationship. That said, there is nothing wrong with Jesus praying to His Father in heaven. We need to understand that while on earth, even in his human nature, Jesus continued to have an eternal relationship with His Father. He has always been the Son of God, even before He was born to Mary.
So, what did Jesus pray for before Judas betrayed Him? There are some interesting things that Jesus prayed for. I’ll share it here with you.
1. Jesus prayed for His glory. John 17:1-5.
“After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: “Father, the hour has come.Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. 2 For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. 3 Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. 4 I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. 5 And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began.”
· Jesus was glorified through His obedience to His Father. v.1 and 3
· Jesus is glorified by God’s authority given to Him. v.2
· Jesus is glorified by His eternal existence with His Father. v.5
2. Jesus prayed for His disciples.
“6 “I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world. They were yours; you gave them to me, and they have obeyed your word… 11 I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power ofyour name, the name you gave me, so that they may be one as we are one13 “I am coming to you now, but I say these things while I am still in the world, so that they may have the full measure of my joy within them… 17 Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.18 As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world.”” John 17:6;11-13;17-18.
· Jesus prayed for their unity. v.11
· Jesus prayed for their joy. v.13
· Jesus prayed for their mission. v.18
3. Jesus prayed for us who believe.
“20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one— 23 I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.” John 17:20-23
· Jesus prayed for our coming to faith. v.20
· Jesus prayed for our spiritual unity. v.21-22
· Jesus prayed that the world would know that He loves us who believe. v.23
Things to consider:
· Aligning yourselves with the Lord’s prayer, “be brought to complete unity” with God.
· Ask God to help us test ourselves. Psalm 139:23-24, “23 Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. 24 See if there is any offensive way in me and lead me in the way everlasting.”
· Do a PCR test: Perseverance in the study of the Word; Confidence in the assurances of Christ; Resolution for Biblical change.
Questions for Bible study discussion:
1. Why did Jesus pray to His Father in heaven?
2. Why was it necessary for Jesus to pray for His glory?
3. Where did Jesus originally come from?
4. What is the implication of Jesus’ claim that He was with God even before the world began?
5. Do you believe in eternity? What does eternity look like to you?
6. Have you been a product of someone else’s prayer?
7. How did you come to know Jesus?
8. Have you prayed for someone to come to faith in the Lord?
9. Have you done a PCR test lately? See above in Things to consider.