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Jesus’ Priestly Prayer from John 17:1-26 includes an analysis of the first of six prayer requests, John 17:1-8, made during Jesus' lengthy prayer at the end of the Upper Room Discourse which reveals God's eternal plan behind and Christ's, His Son, commitment to complete it. Includes Bible study questions.
First identify what things Jesus asks of the Father in John 17 during His prayer and then discuss which you have asked for and those you have not.
In John 17 Jesus reveals more about our lives than our scrapbooks would. Jesus shares about how we as God’s people are part of a special eternal plan to gather believers about Himself to share His riches for eternity.
We are impressed with Jesus’ prayer but wonder how this chapter fits into the Book of John as a whole. Was John giving us a more comprehensive view of Jesus’ work to deepen our faith for rigorous testing times? We can’t be sure, but we are given a firm understanding of what is happening behind the scenes that brings about a person to become a believer, remain a believer and eternally live in fellowship with God.
Disney World provides an interesting illustration of this. The Magic Kingdom is built over a huge covered ground level tunnel complex starting from the castle and stretching out (i.e. utilidors). After this nine acre complex was made, sand from the man-made lake was used to cover it. So all the trash, costume rooms, utility rooms, computer rooms, etc. are all built in a huge complex below where people walk and ride.
God’s plan for us to be part of His great plan is similar to this great complex in that it is largely hidden, though revealed here in John 17 during Jesus’ prayer. Although we briefly see Jesus in time, the significance of it all must be understood from this broader perspective revealed here.
The following six points are oriented around the specific requests that Jesus makes during His lengthy prayer.
“Glorify Thy Son, that the Son may glorify Thee...” (John 17:1).
"Glorify Thou Me together with Thyself, Father, with the glory which I ever had with Thee before the world was” (John 17:5).
Jesus shares what it meant for Him as the Son of God to be here on earth. He was sent with a mission (John 17:17:2) to give eternal life to those whom God the Father desired.
Jesus accomplished this work and now will soon return to the Father in the fullness of His glory. There is an emphasis of passing knowledge and insight on which enables the person to become and remain a believer John 17:(7-8).
Go through these verses (John 17:1-8) and define Jesus’ work that He felt important to accomplish.
What was Jesus’ deepest longing (John 17:5)?
What kept Jesus from being fully united with the Father (John 17:6-8)?
Sacrifice is sometimes required to obtain the best. Jesus’ glorious fellowship was for a time forsaken for the sake of bringing a larger group to share in that glory. As we widen our understanding of what God is doing, we too will find opportunities to sacrifice what we have to accomplish God’s greater plan.
The Lord has also included us in His plan. List one or two areas the Lord has shown you your part in His greater plan.
Share one area in that you have sacrificed something for God’s plan and one way that He might be preparing you now to make some form of sacrifice.
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