JESUS PRAYS FOR HIS FOLLOWERS
BY SHIRLEY RHODES
Jesus patiently laid out each part of the pattern to follow in prayer, which is his guide, his instructions for his then chosen followers, and those instructions are continued in those today who decide to learn of his purpose and mission. He reinforced his thoughts to his disciples just before scripture was to be fulfilled as to betrayal and death on the cross. He knew that even though they firmly believed they were to endure in his suffering, that when the moment came they would flee. His question to them, “Do you finally believe?
Even when you leave me I’m not abandoned, the Father is with me. Everything I’ve told you is so that you will be unshakable, assured, and deeply at peace, in this world you will continue to experience difficulties but don’t worry, I’ve overcome the world.” Jesus Prays for His Followers. (Take time and read this prayer, seek understanding because it is truly an awesome expression of love).
In prayer Jesus lifted his eyes towards heaven and said:
“Father, it’s time.
Display the bright splendor of your Son, so your Son in turn may show your bright splendor. You put him in charge of everything human so he might give real and eternal life to all in his charge. That they know you, the one and only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you sent, I glorified you on earth by completing down to the last detail what you assigned me to do.
I spelled out in detail your character to the men and women you gave me. For they are yours by right, everything mine is yours and yours is mine, my life is on display in them. I am no longer going to be visible in the world but they’ll continue in the world while I return to you. Holy Father guard them as they pursue this life that you conferred as a gift through me, so they can be one heart and mind as we are one heart and mind. As long as I was with them in the pursuit of the life you gave them through me, I even posted a night watch and not one of them got away, except for the rebel bent on destruction (the exception that proved the rule of scripture).
Now I’m returning to you, I’m saying these things in the world’s hearing so my people can experience my joy completed in them. I gave them your word; the godless world hated them because of it, because they didn’t join the world’s ways. I’m not asking that you take them out of the world, but that you guard them from the Evil One. They are no more defined by the world than I am defined by the world; make them Holy–concentrated– with truth, your word is concentrating truth. In the same way that you gave me a mission in the world, I’m concentrating myself for their sakes so they will be truth concentrated in their mission.
I’m praying for not only them but also for those who will believe in me, because of them and their witness about me. The goal is for all of them to become one in heart and mind–just as you, Father, are in me and I in you so that they might be one heart and mind with us. Then the world might believe that you in fact sent me. The same glory you gave me, I gave them so they’ll be mature in this oneness and give the godless world evidence that you sent me and loved them in the same way you’ve loved me.
Father, I want those you gave me to be with me, right where I am so they can see my glory, the splendor you gave me, having loved me long before there ever was a world. Righteous Father, the world has never known you, but I have known you and these disciples know that you sent me on this mission. I have made your very being known to them–who you are and what you do–and continue to make known so that your love for me might be in them exactly as I am in them” (John 17:1-26 MGS).