If God be our Father, we have an intercessor to appear for us continually to guarantee our safe delivery to the haven above and our keeping along the way. He prays not for the world but for those who are His, that they might be preserved in their salvation, that they might have His joy, that they might be fortified against the evils of the world, that they might be purified through His Word, that they might manifest oneness with Him, that they might be edified in Him and at last behold His glory.
1 These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee:
2 As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.
3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
4 I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.
5 And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.
6 I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word.
7 Now they have known that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee.
8 For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.
9 I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine.
10 And all mine are thine, and thine are mine; and I am glorified in them.
11 And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.
12 While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.
13 And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.
14 I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
15 I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.
16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
18 As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.
19 And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.
20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;
21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:
23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.
24 Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.
25 O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me.
26 And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.
John 17 Intro – J. Vernon McGee
John 17:1 – J. Vernon McGee
John 17:2-3 – J. Vernon McGee
John 17:4-5 – J. Vernon McGee
John 17:6-9 – J. Vernon McGee
John 17:10-19 – J. Vernon McGee
John 17:20-26 – J. Vernon McGee
John 17:1-10 – Jesus Prays for His Own
In Christ’s own oratory we hear Him pray. But how wonderful! There is a tone of expectant faith in this marvelous prayer of assured trust, as if He knew that He was asking what was in His Father’s heart and thought. The Lord speaks as if He had already passed through death, and were pleading before the throne. He is glad to have authority only that He may use it to give life.
The Father’s gift to Jesus consisted in the men who followed Him, the word He spoke, the works He did, the name He bore. How careful the Good Shepherd was of those who had been given to Him! He prayed for them, He kept them, He entrusted them as His dying legacy to His Father’s care. Though He did not pray directly for the world, He was doing His best for it, in concentrating all His solicitude on those who were to be the messengers of His gospel.
In John 17:10 we are reminded of Luke 15:31. The very words which the father said to the elder brother are here appropriated by our Lord; and we are taught that we have the privilege of entering on the same inheritance of grace and power as our Lord had. He won for us, unworthy though we are, the privilege of saying, All thine are mine. If only we believed this, and lived as children in our Father’s house, how different life would become. —Through the Bible Day by Day
John 17:1—Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify Thee.
In one form or another we are constantly asking the Father to glorify us. Glorify me, O Father, we cry, by giving me the largest congregation in the town; by commencing a great revival in my mission, by increasing my spiritual power, so that I shall be greatly sought after. Of course, we do not state our reasons quite so concisely; but this is really what we mean. And then we wonder why the answer tarries. Is it not because our Father dare not trust us with glory? He knows that we would become proud and self-conscious; that we would ascribe our success to the strength of our arm and the swiftness of our foot. Nothing would be more harmful to our Christian growth. But when we desire glory only that we may be able better to glorify Jesus, then there will be no stint in what He will confer on us. Glory, like a golden river, will pour into our hearts and lives.
Oh for this absorbing passion for the glory of Jesus! To be able to pray “Thy kingdom come” (Matthew 6:10; Luke 11:2), without reference to our share in securing its advent. To be as glad when another scores a great success, as though it had been ourselves who had won the laurels. To pray as eagerly for the success of others as of ourselves. Here is an ideal which seems inaccessible, as it ridicules all our natural attempts to win it. To be pleased to suffer, to fail, to be counted nothing and nobody, if only our dear Lord is extolled, exalted, and made very high—is this possible?
Do you choose it? Then be of good cheer. This is the hunger which God has promised to satisfy. He never shows you your lack of a grace without pledging Himself thereby to realize it for you. Yes, this blessed experience shall come even to you. You shall be taught the blessed lesson of perfect love. —Our Daily Homily
John 17:11-17 – In the World but not of the World
What is the world? The inspired definition is given in I John 2:16. Enumerating her three offsprings, the Apostle goes on to say, “All that is in the world… is not of the Father,” that is, does not originate or proceed from Him. We might reverse the proposition and say, “All that does not emanate from the Father, and which is inconsistent with perfect love and purity and truth, is of the world.”
The spirit of the world permeates society. All its plans, aims, and activities belong to the present passing show. “Under the sun” is the suggestion of Ecclesiastes. The world has always been in collision with Christ, because His teaching reverses everything that the world prizes. In its beatitudes, its methods of pleasure and acquisition, its view and use of power, and its attitude toward God, the difference is wide as the poles. But its hatred is welcome to the followers of Christ, as proving that they are on the Master’s track, and in His fellowship they are abundantly compensated. —Through the Bible Day by Day
John 17:18-26 – The Master’s Commission
In John 10:36 we are told that the Father consecrated our Redeemer to the great work by which He had brought nigh them that were far off, Ephesians 2:13. What a scene that must have been when Jesus was set apart to destroy the works of the devil, bring in everlasting salvation, and gather into one family the scattered children of God! In that act we were included. We are bound, therefore, to a life of consecration and devotion to the world’s redemption.
True unity is spiritual. When we abide in Christ, we abide in each other. Men do not recognize it, but the spiritual unity exists already. If we are one with our Lord, we must be one with all who are members of His mystical body. In different ages the Church has varied outward organization, but there has always been the unity of the one body, the one flock, the one temple. We cannot make that unity, but we must endeavor to keep it, always remembering it, especially when dealing with our fellow-believers. If we are one on earth, we must be with Him forever. —Through the Bible Day by Day