Since my early days of studying the Bible, John chapter 17 has always stood out to me. The entire chapter is a prayer by Jesus. Along with praying for his disciples, Jesus specifically prayed for you as well.
I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me through their message. John 17:20
In the chapters before this one, Jesus laid out some last-minute details. Then at the end of chapter 16, he said this.
I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
John went on to record what Jesus prayed. First He addressed His Father. Then He pointed His followers toward the only way to receive eternal life.
Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son so he can give glory back to you. For you have given him authority over everyone. He gives eternal life to each one you have given him. And this is the way to have eternal life—to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, the one you sent to earth. John 17:1-3
How Jesus Specifically Prayed For You
He said in this prayer that He wasn’t praying for the world. But for those who the Father gave Him. They are all who have answered the prompting of the Holy Spirit and called on the name of Jesus. In His prayer, He mentioned 4 major requests.
To Keep and Protect Us
Even though the Lord was not praying for the world, it doesn’t mean He was giving up on it. No, He called us to reach out to the unsaved. And in doing so, He was praying for us to be protected.
All who are mine belong to you, and you have given them to me, so they bring me glory. Now I am departing from the world; they are staying in this world, but I am coming to you. Holy Father, you have given me your name; now protect them by the power of your name so that they will be united just as we are. John 17:10-11
Our definition of protection might be a bit different than the Lord’s. Saints through the years have experienced persecution, torture, and death for the sake of the gospel. But look what He prayed in verse 15. To protect us from the evil one is to protect our relationship with God.
I’m not asking you to take them out of the world, but to keep them safe from the evil one. They do not belong to this world any more than I do. John 17:15
A related post for protection in the Lord is Are You Experiencing The Compassion Of The Good Shepherd?
That We Would have Joy
Many things in this life can be labeled as joy suckers. Joy, however, is not based on circumstances. It come from within us which comes straight from Jesus.
Now I am coming to you. I told them many things while I was with them in this world so they would be filled with my joy. John 17:13
A related post to having joy is Experiencing Complete Joy.
To Make Us Holy
We have been sent out into an unholy world. Because Jesus sacrificed Himself for us, we can be made holy through His Word. Jesus is the Word and the Word is truth. Therefore, the Word in us sets us apart to God which is the definition of being holy.
Make them holy by your truth; teach them your word, which is truth. Just as you sent me into the world, I am sending them into the world. And I give myself as a holy sacrifice for them so they can be made holy by your truth. John 17:17-19
A related post to being holy is How To Be Sinless In The Eyes Of God.
Our unity is His testimony. We are joined to the Father through the Son. And our unity with each other is established through Jesus Christ the Son.
I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. And may they be in us so that the world will believe you sent me. I am in them and you are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me. John 17:21, 23
Our unity starts because Jesus Is The Ultimate Sacrifice For All Eternity
Verse 26 is better than any prayer that I could come up with to close this devotion. It is the concluding verse of the chapter in which Jesus Specifically Prayed For You.
I have revealed you to them, and I will continue to do so. Then your love for me will be in them, and I will be in them. John 17:26
Here is where John 17 is available for you to read.
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