• O Lord our God, other masters besides You have ruled us; But through You alone we confess Your name. [Isa 26:13 NASB]. Your face, LORD, do I seek. [Psa 27:8 ESV].

56 Doctrines From Jesus’ High Priestly Prayer

John chapter 17 is a chapter of prayer and doctrine. A prayer from the Son to the Father. Many call it Christ’s High Priestly Prayer.

The doctrines of election, obedience and perseverance of the saints are irrefutable as they are clearly put forward in the words of the Son to the Father.

In this prayer, Christ expressed His love for His disciples and He also represented all the doctrine He had reviewed that night with the disciples. He gave so much teaching in His prayer to the Father. Here is a partial list of points of doctrine in chapter 17, there is much more to mine from this passage.

1) “The hour has come.” [v1]. God designed a specific time and place for Christ to die. Several other times people tried to arrest Him or kill Him, but it did not happen because “His Hour had not yet come.”

2) Jesus sought glory from the Father and sought to glorify the Father (v1). Before the creation of the world, throughout eternity past, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit lived in perfect love and unity, glorifying each other. Christ left this glory and came to earth to make the Father known and redeem His people.

3) About His imminent death on the cross, Jesus asked to be glorified (v1). When He took on our sin and gave us His righteousness, He was glorified. There was an eternal covenant and He satisfied the wrath of God, for the glory of God.

4) The glory of the Son, glorifies the Father (v1). The Apostle Paul wrote every knee shall bow and every tongue confess Jesus is Lord – to the glory of God the Father (Php 2:10-11). When Christ is glorified, the Father is glorified.

5) All authority has been given to Jesus (v2). This means He is Lord; we don’t make Him Lord. The Father has already made Him Lord. Jesus is our Lord; He is our King; He is our Master. We bow to Him now and follow or we will bow in the end. As Paul wrote in Philippians, every knee shall bow and every tongue confess.

6) The Son gives eternal life to all those given Him by the Father (v2). This is part of His authority. Though no one comes to the Son unless the Father draw Him (6:44), no one comes to the Father except through the Son (14:6). Whoever comes, He will not cast out but He will raise them up to eternal life (6:37-39).

7) What is eternal life? It is knowing the Father and the Son (v3). How do we know the Father and the Son? By spending time in the Word and in prayer. This wreaks havoc on the false doctrine of fire insurance, given by the modern American gospel. The whole point of going to Heaven is not salvation from Hell; it is to be with God. If we don’t have time for God down here, why would we want to spend eternity with Him?

8) Christ came to do the work the Father sent Him to do and He finished it (v4). He came to make the Father known (1:18) and He came to save sinners (1Ti 1:15). He finished the work (v6).

9) The cross was imminent but Christ spoke as if the work was done (v4). God is not constrained by time but in the context of time, there was no question whether Christ would complete the work.

10) Now the work was done, Christ desired His glory once again (v5). He had this glory before the creation of the world; He left this glory to come to earth as a man.

11) Christ revealed the Father to those the Father gave Him (v6). Those who are saved were chosen in Christ before the creation of the world (Eph 1:4).

12) Those who are saved obey God’s Word (v6).

13) Those who are saved know everything Christ taught came from the Father (v7).

14) Christ gave His people the words the Father gave Him (v8). Jesus is the Word (1:1).

15) Those who follow Christ receive the words and know the truth (v8). This is not a head knowledge. This receiving and knowing are signs of taking this truth as their life. It is a knowing which changes the life.

16) Christ did not come to save the world; in His prayer He specifically did not pray for the world (v9). Just as Christ prayed for those given Him by the Father, this prayer continues as He is in Heaven making intercession for us who believe and are saved (Heb 7:25).

17) All Mine are Yours and Yours are Mine (v10). If we are saved, we belong to God. We don’t give ourselves to God because we already belong to Him. We were chosen by the Father in Christ before the creation of the world (Eph 1:4). If we are saved, we belong to the Father and the Son.

18) The reason we are saved is to glorify God (v10). We belong to God and He saves us for His glory. This idea we are saved to keep us from Hell or to have a relationship with God or to help us with our life is a man centered religion; it is the modern American gospel. If we are saved, we seek to bring glory to Christ. Sure we want to be saved from Hell but if this is the scope of our faith, we are not saved. Jesus said those who are saved “have kept Your Word.” [v6] The saved are obedient; they bring glory to Christ and desire to be with Him. To abandon ourself and to seek God’s glory is our religion.

19) “I am no longer in the world.” [v11]. Once again, God is not constrained by time but in the context of time, there was no question whether Christ would complete the work.

20) They are in the world. . .keep them in Your name (v11). Jesus said no one can take us from His hand, nor take them from the Father’s hand (10:28-29). We belong to God and cannot be taken from Him. This is the reason and the how we persevere. He keeps us to the end.

21) He helps us persevere in unity so we may be one as God is one (v11). Those who are truly saved are in unity. This is God’s doing; it does not come about by good feelings or good intentions; it is the work of God. Why do we see division in the visible church? Jesus explained this in the parable of the wheat and the tares (Mat 13:24-30). Many in the visible church do not belong to the bride of Christ; but we who belong are united with those who do.

22) While Christ was on earth, He kept those who were His (v12). Now, He looked to the Father to keep them.

23) Christ allowed Judas to betray Him (v12). Judas was the only one lost and this was in fulfillment of Scripture. This confirms the teaching in Romans 9 that some are destined for or created for destruction. Jesus called Judas “the son of destruction.”

24) Christ was going back to the Father (v13).

25) Christ spoke to bring joy to His followers (v13). Do we take joy in the Scriptures? If we don’t find ourselves desiring the Word, we need to examine ourselves to see if we are saved. “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.” [15:11].

26) Christ has given us His Word (v14). He taught the disciples and He has left Scripture with us. His Scripture and teaching continue to this day. If we are following Him, we will prize this gift; we will be in His Word.

27) The world hates those who follow Christ because we are not of this world (v14). The world has hated Christ and it will hate us who follow Him. Jesus explained this in chapter fifteen. Those who love the world are enemies of God (Jam 4:4). This should cause us to examine ourselves and see if we love the things of this world more than we desire to spend time with Him.

28) Christ is not of this world (v14). He was not a mere man who lived and died. He lived in eternity with the Father and the Holy Spirit; He lived in perfect glory (v5, et al). But He left all this unspeakable glory to come down to earth (2Co 8:9; Php 2:6-8). He is God (1:1) but He became man (1:14). He is fully God and fully man (Col 2:9; Gal 4:4).

29) Jesus prayed the Father to protect His followers from the evil one (v15). He did not pray we be taken out of the world. We remain to overcome. “And they [overcame Satan] by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death.” [Rev 12:11]. Sometimes we want to pray God remove all temptation from us, but even Christ had to go through temptation. Therefore, we should pray God help us overcome temptation and not deliver us over to evil (Mat 6:13).

30) We are not of the world (16). Christ is not of this world, therefore, those who follow Him are not of this world. We are in the world but not of it. We are here to declare His authority and His glory.

31) We are sanctified through the Word of God (17). Sanctification is the process of the Holy Spirit making us more like Christ. Jesus told the disciples they were clean because of the word He had spoken to them (15:3). He said if we abide in His Word, we will know the truth and the truth will set us free (8:31-32). The more we are in the Word, the more we become like Christ.

32) Christ sent us into the World as the Father sent Him (v18). He came to make the Father known (1:18). So, too, we are here to declare Christ’s authority and to teach His commandments (Mat 28:18-20). We are not here to have our best life now; we are here to proclaim Christ (Rom 10:14-15).

33) Christ set Himself apart so we may be sanctified (v19). Christ died to ransom those who are His. Those who are His, He sanctifies; He sanctifies them through the Word. He doesn’t take us out of the world, yet we are not of the world. We are here to proclaim the authority of Christ. Therefore, if we seek the pleasures of the world and do not seek the Word, we are not set apart; we are not sanctified. If we are not sanctified, we are not saved.

34) Those who believe will declare the truth to others (v20). Christ prayed for those who followed Him and for those who would believe through their word. This is ongoing and it was prayed as if those who believe will tell others, who will believe and tell others. Jesus said we are a city on a hill and we do not hide the light under a basket (Mat 5:14-16). The world was in darkness when He came as the light (1:4,5,9). We have this light and we cannot hide it.

35) Christ’s work spans the generations of man (v20). Christ prayed not only for those who followed Him when He was alive, but also for those who would believe through their word.

36) Faith in Christ comes through the Word (v20). “How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in Him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent?” [Rom 10:14-15]. We are sent by Christ to proclaim salvation and the authority of Christ.

37) Unity in the body of Christ must be based upon truth (v21-23). We are one as the Father and the Son are one. Christ gave the parable of the wheat and the tares (Mat 13:24-30). There will be tares in the visible church. If we seek unity among all in the visible church, the believing and the unbelieving, the obedient and the disobedient, the truth will compromised. Our unity must be based upon the Word of God, just as the Father and the Son.

38) Christ’s desire is for all who follow Him to be in unity (v21). This spans the generations and this is the Bride of Christ.

39) One of the purposes of unity among believers is so the world may believe the Father sent the Son (v21). He did not say, so the world may come to a saving faith. Many in the church want to compromise the Gospel: they think by being inclusive we have unity and by this (false) unity, we can attract the world, so the world can be saved. But if we compromise the Gospel, we are proclaiming a false God; a false christ. This is not what God is looking for. The fact is true believers, those who are obedient to Christ, are in unity; the world sees this and is convicted. They believe, though they will resist a saving faith; and the tares who sowed the seed of false unity are among those who resist a saving faith.

40) The glory the Father gave the Son, the Son has given those who follow Him (v22). Christ was conceived in the virgin by the Holy Spirit; everything Christ said and did was prepared by the Holy Spirit. Remember when the Christ warned against the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit? The Jews had accused Jesus’ work as the work of Beelzebub or Satan (Mat 12:22-32). What Jesus said was the work He performed was the work of the Holy Spirit. Christ is the Son of God; He came to make the Father known; He said and did what He saw the Father doing; and the work He did, He did through the Holy Spirit. So, too, as the Father gave the Spirit to the Son, the Son has given the Spirit to those who follow Him. “Do not quench the Spirit.” [1Th 5:19].

41) The Holy Spirit works for our unity (v22). He gave us the Holy Spirit “that they may be one as We are one.” Unity among the brothers is based upon truth. The Holy Spirit does not bring new revelation; He will never contradict the Word of God. He bears witness of Christ and guides us into truth (15:26; 16:13).

42) True followers of Christ will be in unity (v23). “I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfectly one.” The divisions within the visible church are the conflicts between the wheat and the tares. Those who follow Christ are united upon the truth of the Word of God. Though we are not yet perfect, we are unity. When the Bride is presented to Christ, she will be perfect.

43) Another purpose of unity among believers is so the world may know the Father loves those who follow Christ as He loves His Son (v23). The world loves those who are of the world. Yet, it is a selfish love; everyone is looking to build their wealth or comfort on the back of someone else. But the love among the brothers is pure; we do not build our life here and we look to help each other (Gal 6:2; Php 2:3). The world notices this difference; they know this is from God; and they are convicted.

44) Christ desires all who follow Him to be with Him (v24). This is exciting to know He is anxious for us to be with Him.

45) Christ desires all who follow Him to be with Him and see His glory (v24). He loves His glory and wants His followers to see it and celebrate it with Him.

46) Christ’s glory was before the foundation of the world (v24).

47) The Father, Son and Holy Spirit were rejoicing together in perfect love before the creation of the world (v24). God did not create man because He was lonely, far from it. Put aside all these man-centered reasons for salvation. The Trinity possessed all glory and they rejoiced together in perfect love and unity. We must conclude man was made for this glory and salvation was brought to man for this glory. All glory and honor and power belong to God.

48) The Father is righteous: God is righteous (v25).

49) The world does not know the Father (v25). Christ came to make the Father known; known to those whom the Father had given Him. Just as Christ did not pray for the world (v9), He did not reveal the truth to the world (12:40).

50) Christ knows the Father (v25). To declare He knows the Father, He must have been with Him. In the beginning Christ was with God and was God (1:1).

51) Those who follow Christ know the Father and know He sent the Son (v25). Christ came to make the Father known (1:18). Though the world did not believe (1:10-11) some did believe (1:12-13). Jesus said if we have seen or know Him, we know the Father also (14:9).

52) Christ made the Father known to those who follow Him (v26); for they were given to Him (v6).

53) Christ will continue to make the Father known to those who follow Him (v26). He has given us His Word (v17) and His Spirit (v22). The Holy Spirit will lead us into truth (16:13). How does He lead us? The Spirit does not speak on His own authority, but, like the Son, He speaks what He hears from the Father (16:13). The Father has left us His Word. We must be in the Word for the Holy Spirit to reveal truth (8:31-32). Christ continues to make the Father known to us as we continue to be in the Word.

54) If we follow Christ, the love the Father had for the Son will be in us (v26). The Father will love us because we love the Son (16:27). Yet, we know, He loved us before we loved Him (1Jo 4:19).

55) If we follow Christ, He will be in us (v26). Christ in us, the hope of glory (Col 1:27).

56) Christ is glorified by making the Father known and those the Father has given to Him know and believe. We are loved by God and Christ dwells in us. All this is for Christ to be glorified and Christ is glorified for the Father’s glory (v1-26).

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