Bible Reading: John 17:1-5
Jesus said, “Father the time has come” [v.1]. It was the time for Jesus to die on the cross. This was the reason that He had come to earth in human form. He came to die, and through His death and resurrection to bring lost mankind back into fellowship with God.
As this moment approached Jesus spent time in prayer, and we have the immense privilege of knowing how He prayed. This really is the “Lord’s Prayer!” In His praying he began by reporting back to His Father about all that he had done, and about His disciples.
Jesus had done everything that His Father had asked Him to do. He had glorified His Father and completed the work that His Father had given Him to do. Jesus said that He had shown the world the glory of the Father by faithfully doing everything the Father had told him to do [17:4]. He had exercised the authority that His Father had given Him, and in doing so could give eternal life to all those whom the Father had given Him. Here in this statement is the meaning of eternal life – “to know the only true God and Jesus Christ” [John 17:3]. What a way to approach death – to embrace that moment, however awful and painful it might be, but at the same time to be able to say that He had done everything that His Father had asked of Him.
Jesus then made two requests to His Father. Firstly, He asked God to give Him glory that He might glorify His Father. His first thought was always that His Father would be glorified! God’s glory is His character, qualities and majesty, and to glorify God is to be a channel through which His beauty, character and qualities are revealed. Here is an amazing truth – Jesus is one with His Father, and yet He submits to His Father, and wants above all else that His Father be glorified! At the cross Jesus glorified His Father by revealing God’s love, grace and power. What an example for His children – that in everything God might be glorified!
Secondly, Jesus requested that He might be restored to His place next to His Father – “And now, Father, glorify Me along with Yourself and restore Me to such majesty and honour in Your presence as I had with You before the world existed” [John 17:5 Amplified Bible Classic Edition]. He requests to be restored to the Father’s right hand, where He had been before the world existed! This was His rightful place, enthroned on high! He had left this glory to become a man, taking the form of a servant, humbling Himself, even to death on a cross. Now it was time to return to where He really belonged!
Jesus’ greatest desire was to glorify His Father. What does this mean in practical terms to you personally? How can you glorify Jesus in your life?
Jesus finished the work that His Father gave Him to do. God has a work for each believer to do. What is the specific work that God has called you to do?
Read Philippians 2:9-11. How did the Father answer the prayer of Jesus?