Who do you pray for?
From John: A 21-Day Devotional
Before heading to His death, Jesus stops and prays for Himself, His friends, and all of us who would believe in Him in the future.
If you want to know what someone thinks about God, listen to their prayers. Do they ask God only for wealth and possessions, or for others’ salvation? Do they appeal for God’s intervention like they would present a business proposal or as a child petitioning their father?
In John 17, we’re allowed to eavesdrop on one of Jesus’ prayers. Although it is only moments before He will be betrayed, beaten and crucified, Jesus takes time to pray on behalf of His disciples. He shows His heartfelt concern, not only for the men He has taught for years but for those who would later hear His message, including you.
“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you” (John 17:20-21).
The intimacy and familiarity with which Jesus speaks to God is evident. For eternity, even before “the foundation of the world,” Jesus and God the Father have shared a perfect loving relationship. Through Jesus, we get to enter into their perfect loving union. You have received eternal life and restoration to a loving and intimate relationship with God through Jesus.
God is not far off, and Jesus’ concern for you is not distant. He prayed for you. Even today, the Son resides next to the Father, continuing to appeal on your behalf (1 John 2:1). Today, thank God for allowing you to enter into a completely loving relationship with Him through Jesus.
• What can you learn about Jesus from this chapter?
• How are you encouraged by the fact that Jesus prayed for you?
• How can your confidence in God’s love for you affect your actions, even in the face of those who hate you (John 17:14)?