December 24th, 2006
Today is Christmas eve, and in today’s reading we encounter Jesus on the eve not of his birth but of his trial and execution. Jesus spent a fair bit of time on the last night praying for his friends. He doesn’t pray that they live peaceful lives filled with friendly neighbours; he prays that the be made holy in the truth. He doesn’t pray that they live safe lives; he prays that they be kept from the influence of the evil one while they are facing the dangers of the world. And most of all he prays that they would live lives which draw others people’s attention to God. He also prays that the same love with which God the Father loved Jesus would be present in his followers.
John’s Account of the Good News — Chapter 17
17:1 After saying this, Jesus looked up towards heaven and said, “Father, the time has come. Glorify your Son, so your Son can also glorify you. 17:2 You gave him authority over all humans, and he will give eternal life to everyone you have trusted to him. 17:3 Eternal life is when people know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you sent. 17:4 I glorified you on the earth. I have finished the work which you gave me to do. 17:5 Now, Father, glorify me with yourself with the glory which I had with you before the world existed. 17:6 I revealed your name to the people you gave me from the world. They were yours, and you have given them to me. They have kept your word.
17:7 “They now understand that everything you have given me comes from you. 17:8 I have passed on to them the message you gave me, and they have accepted it, and know for sure that I come from you, and they believe that you sent me. 17:9 I pray for them. I don’t pray for the world, but for the people you have given me, because they are yours. 17:10 Everything that is mine is yours, and everything that is yours is mine, and I am glorified in them. 17:11 I am in the world no longer, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect in your name those you have given me, so that they can be one, just as we are. 17:12 While I was with them in the world, I protected them in your name. I have kept those you have given me. None of them is lost, except the son of destruction so that the Scripture could be fulfilled.
17:13 “Now I come to you. I say these things while still in the world, so that they can be completely filled with my joy. 17:14 I have given them your message. The world hates them, because they don’t belong to the world, just as I don’t belong to the world. 17:15 I pray not that you would take them out of the world, but that you would keep them away from the evil one. 17:16 They don’t belong to the world, just as I don’t belong to the world. 17:17 Make them holy in your truth. Your message is truth. 17:18 In the same way that you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world. 17:19 I make myself holy for their sakes, so they can also be made holy in truth. 17:20 I don’t pray only for them, but also for anyone who believes in me through their message, 17:21 so that all of them can be one. Just as you, Father, are in me, and I am in you, they can also be one in us, so that the world can believe that you sent me. 17:22 I have passed on to them the glory which you have given me, so they can be one, just as we are one, 17:23 I in them, and you in me, so they can be completely unified, so the world can know that you sent me, and loved them, just as you loved me. 17:24 Father, I want the people you have given me to be with me where I am, to see my glory which you have given me, because you loved me before the foundation of the world. 17:25 Righteous Father, the world has not known you, but I knew you, and these people knew that you sent me. 17:26 I revealed your name to them, and will continue to reveal it, so the love with which you loved me can be in them, and I can be in them.”
Entry Filed under: Courage