For The Apostles

Welcome everyone. I’ve had an interesting weekend coming into contact with two old friends from the net who I hadn’t spoken to in a long time. It’s amazing how the internet brings across people from space and time. As I sit here typing, I am hatting with a friend in WA, a friend in Denmark, and a friend in CA. You are reading this blog from who knows where right now. Isn’t it amazing? What hath God wrought?

We’re going to keep going through the high priestly prayer of Jesus tonight as we study the doctrine of the Trinity. We’re going to be looking at John 17:6-19 tonight.

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. 7Now they know that everything you have given me comes from you. 8For I gave them the words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me. 9I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours. 10All I have is yours, and all you have is mine. And glory has come to me through them. 11I 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 of your name—the name you gave me—so that they may be one as we are one. 12While I was with them, I protected them and kept them safe by that name you gave me. None has been lost except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled. 13“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. 14I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. 15My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. 16They are not of the world, even as I am not of it.17Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. 18As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world. 19For them I sanctify myself, that they too may be truly sanctified.

We’re going to break this down more into the ideas and no, I am again not going to get into the predestination debate. That’s for you all to work out amongst yourselves. I wish to speak more on what we agree on than what we do not.

I find it amazing that Jesus did these things so that the apostles could know he came from God. I’m in a debate with a Mormon now on how anything can be known. Christ did not want people to just hope that he is the way. He wanted them to know that he is the way. He wanted them to know who he was and how he related to the Father. (And relates.)

Jesus prays for them now and not the world, to which it’s okay to pray for specific people sometimes at the exclusion of the world. Jesus prays for their well-being and since they are his and all the Son has is the Father’s, he is leaving them in the hands of the Father. He will not be in the world, but he asks that the Father take care of them.

Also note that Jesus wants them to have the full measure of his joy. Joy seems to be lacking in our churches today. We are often bound up with legalism or else we can go and think it’s all emotion. I like how Dr. Gary Habermas has spoken of how we don’t praise really loudly in church because, as he says in a whisper, “Somebody might think we’re charismatic!”

Of course, nothing against charismatics, but I think those of us that aren’t should realize we’re supposed to live joyful lives regardless of how we express them. It is possible to have joy and in some ways be silent about it.

However, while Jesus realizes we are hated, his prayer is not that we be removed from the world. His prayer is that we be protected in it. We are to be salt and light in the world and in order to be that, we need to be here.

What is his last prayer? Our sanctification. Christ wants us to live holy lives. We should all be honest and admit that it’s a struggle. I’m a single guy and I know the pressure of especially keeping one’s thought life pure. It’s a battle, but Christ desires it for us and as we saw earlier, it’s for our joy.

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