John 17 is often called “The High Priestly Prayer” – because Jesus is our High Priest (see Hebrews 4:14). Sandwiched between the Last Supper and Christ’s arrest is this prayer, which is prayed out loud for the disciples to hear. In it, we learn more of the intimacy of Christ’s relationship with the Father as well as His love for those who follow Him.
If you knew you had less than 24 hours to live, what would you do? If prayer were included in your activities, what would you pray for?
Read John 17:1-5. Why do you think Christ prays His prayer for the disciples to hear?
In verse 1, Christ “looked toward heaven and prayed”. Read the following Scripture and list what you read about the posture of prayer. What do you learn from this? Do you believe that your posture in prayer matters?
- Exodus 9:29
- 2 Samuel 7:18
- 1 Kings 8:22
- 2 Kings 20:2
- Ezra 10:1
- Daniel 6:10
- Matthew 26:39
- Acts 20:36
- 1 Timothy 2:8
According to verse 2, who has Jesus been given authority over? If Christ is God, why does He need to be ‘given’ authority?
Jesus says that “this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ”. How do we “know” God (see Philippians 3:8-10)?
Jesus prays that His father would be glorified through the cross, while He would be glorified in heaven. What do you think this means?
Jesus states His agenda/purpose on earth in this passage. What is it?
What’s at the top of your agenda? Is it success, money, doing good, social media popularity, the perfect lawn, your family, image? The Westminster Catechism says that “man’s chief end is to glorify God (1 Corinthians 10:31) and to enjoy Him forever (Psalm 73:25-26)”. This week, pray and think through what your purpose is, and discuss with your group ways you can achieve it.
After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began.” John 17:1-5 (NIV)