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The High Priestly Prayer
As we continue to get closer to the cross, we see what is often referred to as The High Priestly Prayer of Jesus. In this beautiful prayer, Jesus prays for Himself and the glory of the Father, for the disciples, and even for us as Christians that would come later.
In the Old Testament, a priest was needed to intercede for the people. In this prayer, Jesus intercedes for His disciples and for us as well. And in His death, Jesus would rip the veil of the temple and give us as His people direct access to the Father.
Jesus changed everything for us. Ephesians 2:13 explains it this way,
"...now in Christ Jesus you who were once far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ."
We were so far from God and so broken by our sin. There was nothing that we could do to earn His love, but then came Jesus. He became our great High Priest. He brought us near and put us in Christ.
This prayer is one of the most beautiful in all of the Bible, and it gives us a sweet glimpse of the heart of our Savior. At the start of the prayer, Jesus identified that His ministry on Earth was complete. He had done what He had come to do. The Greek word where Jesus says that He has "accomplished the work" is nearly the same word that would later be translated as "It is finished." Jesus had done everything He had come to do, and now He would finish the work of our redemption.
In this prayer, Jesus would also pray for His disciples. They would be up against persecution and resistance on every side as they continued to serve Him in the world that would crucify Him. Jesus did not pray for things to be easy for them, but He prayed for them to be sanctified, and protected and strengthen with the Word of God.
Jesus then prays these things for not just the disciples that were with Him that night, but for all that would one day follow Him. He prayed for the church of every age. He prayed for us. This prayer gives us a glimpse of the heart of our Savior. We see what was important to Him, and we are reminded of what should be important to us.
Jesus came to the Father with humility willing to do whatever it took, for God's glory. Now we can be like Jesus by having the same attitude. We can willingly lay down our pride and preferences and live a life that will do anything for God's glory.
We can take comfort in reading this prayer as a glimpse of our Savior's heart for us. He loves us. He loves us too much for us to just take the easy way. He wants the way that is best for us, and that points this world to the Lord. But He does not leave us alone. He will be with us every step of the way. He is the One that journeyed to the cross for us, and He will journey this life with us.
Just as Ephesians 2:13 explains, "But now in Christ Jesus you who were once far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ" Jesus changed everything for us! What change has He made in your life?
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