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Prayer of the Savior
for All Believers

In John chapter seventeen we are received with our great High Priest into “the holiest of all.”  “The prayer of the Savior (in John 17) rises as it proceeds… and now He reaches His crowning point – that they may be with Him where He is and behold His glory… that prayer is more after the divine pattern which, like a ladder rises round by round, until is looses itself in heaven.”

C. H. Spurgeon continues, “His prayer was in heaven, and He Himself was there in spirit. What a hint that gives to us!  How readily may we quit the field of battle, and the place of agony, and rise into such fellowship with God, that we may think, and speak and act, as if we were already in possession of our eternal joy!” (Sermons Preached in 1881, Vol. XVII, p. 68-69).

In this great high priestly prayer of Jesus, we stand on holy ground as we go into the secret place of the tabernacle of the Most High.

The great reformer and companion of Martin Luther said in his last lecture before he died, “There is no voice which has ever been heard, either in heaven or in earth, more exalted, more holy, more fruitful, more sublime than the prayer offered up by the Son of God Himself.”

John Brown said, “It is the utterance of the mind and heart of the God-man… in the immediate prospect of completing, by the sacrifice of Himself, the work which had been given Him to do and for the accomplishment of which He had become incarnate.”

The hour had come when the Lord of glory was to be made sin for His people.  What were His thoughts and wishes as He waited for that horrific moment when He would bear the holy wrath of a sin-hating God?

He prayed in the opening verses that His Father be glorified in our salvation. We are saved by His grace alone through faith in His atoning death. Therefore, whatever we do as His believers must be done with all our strength to the glory of God.

Jesus said in verse 24 that all believers are to be “where I am,” in heaven.  Jesus was returning to His glory He enjoyed with His Father.  We are to join Him there.  The reason is “in order that they may behold My own glory which Thou has given Me.” One day we will gaze steadily upon the one divine glory of His attributes (1 John 3:2-3). 

We cannot even, with the best of imagination realize what that glory will be. Jesus used a word meaning “to gaze upon as a spectator.” The word is used when referring to extraordinary objects of interest. The believers are to see all the wonders of the glory of Jesus with unspeakable delight. The present tense indicates "continuous beholding.” It reminds us of 2 Cor. 3:18.

We will see Him in resurrection glory. The glory we shall behold is thus the glory of the Son shining out from His exalted and glorified human nature. This beholding is the very essence of heavenly blessedness. Jesus' words, "With Me, where I myself am" implies our transfer into heaven and into the heavenly presence of Jesus.  This will be our glorification, too.  It is clear that “only glorified eyes can behold in blessedness the glory of the exalted Redeemer” (1 Cor. 15:48; 1 John 3:2). Let us pray that God will sanctify our spiritual sight that we may see Jesus in all His glory (Eph. 1:17-18).

“I desire that they also, whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am…” (John 17:24).  “Dying is but going home; indeed, there is no dying for the saints.”

At a friend's funeral Spurgeon said, “The Master is gathering the ripest of his fruit… His own dear hand is putting his apples of gold into his baskets of silver… Our ripe saints go home because the Beloved is come into his garden to gather lilies… when our friend, or our child, or our wife, or our brother is gone, it is enough that he is with the Father. To call them back does not occur to us; but rather we each one desire to follow after them.”

Jesus is not going to lose a single one of those believers the Father has given to Him.  Our Lord is not fully glorified until we behold His glory.  It will be our glory to see His glory.  Glory apart from His is not glory.  All the saints are going to see all the infinite glory the Father has given His Son.  We will see this glory, and it will be our glory to see Him!  Jesus so perfectly accomplished our salvation that the Father is now in us, and we are in Him!

In our vital union, “Christ is ours, and we are Christ’s; His Father is our Father; we are one with Him; He is one with the Faith; and hence all things are ours, and the Father Himself loves us…   So when the Lord brings His people home, we shall be one with Him, and He one with the Father, and we shall then find boundless glory in beholding the glory of our Lord and God.”

Even so, come, Lord Jesus, come.  We will meet with Jesus in His home and our home, and we shall behold His infinite glory!

Selah!

Message by Wil Pounds (c) 2006

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(c) 2006  Message by Wil Pounds. Anyone is free to use this material and distribute it, but it may not be sold under any circumstances whatsoever without the author's written consent.

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