It is Thursday night of the last week of Jesus’ life.
Jesus and His disciples had just finished the last meal they would share together before His death. At some point during the meal, Judas slipped out to set in motion the arrest of Jesus. After Jesus led the disciples in a song, which was likely from the Psalms, they left the Upper Room where the meal was held and went to the Mount of Olives.
Jesus knew His time was short. Yet, He remained in control. He took the disciples to the garden of Gethsemane to pray. Moments before the Romans and temple authorities arrived with torches and swords to arrest Him, Jesus withdrew to pray.
Read John 17:20-26 silently.
On the last night of His life, Jesus prayed for you.
Jesus prayed for those who would believe through the word of His disciples. We believe today because those disciples were faithful to share the good news of Jesus. That someone who received the good news from the original twelve disciples of Jesus shared it with someone else, who shared it with someone else, who shared it with someone else….
For two thousand years the good news traveled to reach you.
Be still for a moment and let that sink in.
In His final hours, Jesus prayed for you.
He prayed for Himself first, that He could carry out what He was sent to do. Next, He prayed for His disciples, even as some of them slept instead of keeping watch. Finally, He prayed for the family He would make at the cross.
He prayed that the family He made at the cross would be together, just like He is always together with His Father. He prayed that we would be together with Him. He prayed we would know the love of the Father as He does, because there is only one love of God.
God loves you just like He loves Jesus.
He prayed these things so that the world would believe in Him.
The unity that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit experience is our example of what unity should look like. It is also is the source of our unity. We can’t be unified if we aren’t with unified with Him first. If we are connected to Him, then we can be connected to one another.
Jesus prayed that you would be connected with Him, and that you would experience His presence in such a way that it would make the world around you believe.
Do they believe because of you?