John 17.6 cont.
6 Your name I have made known to the Men whom You gave Me from the world. They were Yours and You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word.
In His praying Jesus pays a great compliment to His disciples for being men who have kept the Father’s word.
We have seen that these men were very ordinary men, coming from no special background. They were not religious men like the Pharisees or Sadducees. They were peasants.
However, they had a great quality about them; it was a faithfulness to the teachings of Jesus.
They knew that Jesus only spoke what He had heard the Father saying. Therefore, they valued His words, and Jesus said that they kept them.
The word ‘kept’ can also be translated as ‘obeyed’, ‘guarded’, and ‘observed’.
All are important aspects of what we do with the word of God.
Firstly we must know God’s word. The disciples knew God’s word because they listened to Jesus, and in listening to Him they placed the highest possible value on His words.
His word is more valuable than all the wealth of this world, because His word gives life. There was a time when Jesus had been teaching and debating with the Jews. Most of them could not take on board what Jesus was saying, so they walked away. Jesus then asked the disciples if they too were going to leave Him. We read the response in John 6.68:
Simon Peter replied: “Lord to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.
The disciples listened to Jesus, and, although what He was saying was hard, they still realized that He had the words of life, and life eternal.
We also need to be a people who listen to the word of God, and we can do this by spending time reading His word and becoming familiar with it.
The more we do so the greater will be the increase of our faith in His word.
The more we know of His word, the greater will be our desire to obey His word, and to keep it safe.
It is important for us to guard the word of God against the attacks of people who disregard it.
The words of this world will pass away, but the words of Jesus will never pass away.
Let us put our trust in that which lasts forever.