Lessons Of A Lifetime

Praying For Others Is Important
Your Word Is Truth
Sunday April 9, 2023

Scripture To Consider:
“I have manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me out of the world. They were Yours, You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your Word. Now they have known that all things which You have given Me are from You. For I have given to them the words which You have given Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came from You; and they have believed that You sent Me. I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours. And all mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine, and I am glorified in them.”

“Now, I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are. While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Your name. Those whom You gave Me I have kept; and none of them is lost except the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled. But now I come to You, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have My joy fulfilled in themselves.”

“I have given them Your Word; and the world has hated them because they are not of this world, just as I am not of the world. I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. Sanctify them by Your truth. Your Word is truth. As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also may be sanctified by the truth.” John 17.6-19

Something To Consider:
What might have happened if Jesus had neglected to pray for the men who eventually turned the world right side up, by their preaching the truth of the Word of God and of the gospel of Jesus Christ? What is it that will happen to those who we are spiritually responsible for, if we do not pray for them as Jesus prayed for His disciples?

Let us not be forced to find out, rather let us pray for them and for all 21st century disciples today. Prayer is something divine that is within the reach of all true believers. Paul admonished God’s people in 1 Thessalonians 5.17, “Pray without ceasing.” Would we be found guilty of praying without ceasing?

James wrote in James 5.16; “Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man [woman or young person] avails [or accomplishes] much.” Can we therefore convince ourselves that we are accomplishing much through prayer?

Something Else To Consider:
While Jesus was in the world He took full responsibility for His disciples. As He prepared to leave this world through the death of the cross, He transferred that responsibility to His Father in heaven. In actuality Jesus was giving His disciples back to God in order to place them under His protective custody while they still resided here on planet earth.

They were in the world, but they were not of the world, just as we are in the world and yet not of the world, if we belong to God in Jesus Christ through our spiritual new birth. And that new birth in Christ assures us that we are not of this physical world. If we were of the world the world would love us as its own. This Easter season, are we being loved by the world, or are we seen as loving Christ?

We were chosen out of the world, and therefore, the world hates us! And those who hate us first hated Christ and God our Father. And therefore, praying for others of our brothers and sisters in Christ is important. And praying the Word of God, which is truth, is of utmost importance, especially as we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus this Lord’s Day.

Something More To Consider:
How many of us have ever given our loved ones, our children, our brothers or sisters, mothers or fathers to God in prayer, to be kept, or to be protected while they reside in this world? And if not, why not? This is surely something more to consider by all who call upon the name of the Lord.

Jesus knew that the time of His departure from the world was approaching. We do not always have the luxury of such future knowledge. Therefore, let us not be caught leaving this world without first transferring the responsibility of those we love and are acquainted with to God our Father in heaven.

The apostle Paul was a promoter of prayer. In 1 Timothy 2.1 Paul stated; “Therefore, I exhort [or encourage] first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men.”

Paul followed up in verse 8, by proclaiming; “I desire therefore that the men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.” In other words, praying for others is important and a biblical mandate. Therefore, how are we doing?

A Few Final Words:
Jesus prayed, “Sanctify them [His disciples of every generation] by Your truth, Your Word [the written and preserved Word of God] is truth.” We are instructed in John 1.17; “Grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.” We are informed by the prophet in Isaiah 59.14, “Truth is fallen in the street, and equity [or justice] cannot enter.”

Was Isaiah prophesying of this 21st century generation? Was he able to foresee the abounding lawlessness that Jesus also predicted in Matthew chapter 24 while speaking of end time events. Did Jesus and Isaiah foresee the lawless chaos filling the major cities and towns of every nation on planet earth? Yes, I do believe they did, and we must fully understand that the Word of God is indeed the truth from Genesis to Revelation!

Jesus also proclaimed in John 14.6; “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” Without Jesus, there is no truth and we become blind and therefore lose our way to eternal life. Therefore, let us pray for the Word of God to be a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path as we approach these end times prayerfully.

Jesus perpetuated the spiritual protection and well-being of His disciples, by transferring responsibility from Himself to His Father, of whom they already belonged to by their believing in His Son, Jesus Christ of Nazareth.

Are we following in Jesus’ footsteps concerning prayer? Jesus announced; “I pray for them [His disciples, past, present, and future], I do not pray for the world but those whom You have given Me [His disciples, past, present, and future], for they are Yours.”

Our Father in heaven, teach us to pray effectively for our loved ones and those we are in some small or large way responsible for. Help us to be found imitating Jesus’ example in His praying for His disciples. May we be of encouragement to others by our praying for them. In Him Always, Amen!

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