John 17.24-26 cont.
24 Father, I desire that those whom You have given to Me, might also be with Me, so that they may see My glory, which You gave to Me, because You loved Me before the foundation of the world.
25 Righteous Father, although the world has not known You, I have known you, and these men know that You sent Me.
26 And I have made known to them Your Name and I will make it known, so that the love with which You love Me may also be in them and I in them.
In the final sentences of His prayer Jesus talks about knowledge, and that He knew His Father. He states that the world did not know God.
There are many people today who may believe in God, but they do not know Him. Their belief in God may take various forms and include all kinds of strange and weird notions, because they do not know Him.
To know God is an intimate thing. God created us this way. He created Adam and Eve to know each other and to know God. He created us to know Him. He created you and me to know Him.
He sent Jesus into the world to bring us into an intimate knowledge of Himself.
Initially Jesus did this with His disciples, as they grew to know Him they also grew to know the Father.
God’s word tells us:
Knowledge of the Holy One results in understanding – Proverbs 9.1 (NLT).
Gaining as much knowledge as we can of the world will only make us worldly wise and familiar with the world’s ways. No worldly knowledge will bring us closer to knowing God.
It is only Jesus who can bring us into knowing the Father, and He does this through the Holy Spirit, whom He gives to everyone who receives Him as Lord and Saviour.
Jesus concludes His prayer by saying that the reason He has made the Father known is so that His love may be extended to His disciples, and all future believers.
God’s love for humanity is the foundation of the gospel, as expressed in John 3.16:
16 This is the way in which God loved the world: it was so much that He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who is believing in Him should not be lost, but might have eternal life.
Paul builds on this in his letter to the Ephesians:
- That Christ should live in your hearts through faith, having been rooted and grounded in love,
- so that you might have the ability, with all the saints, to grasp the breadth and length and height and depth,
- to know the love of Christ that exceeds this knowledge, so that you might be completely filled in all the fullness of God – Ephesians 3.17-19.
Let us receive this prayer for ourselves and pray it for one another.