John 17

1 Jesus has honored the Father by completing the work of salvation. He now asks the Father to honor the completion of the work, and to be honored by it.
2 God gave Jesus the authority to grant eternal life to those who would believe.
3 This is the definition of eternal life. When we start a relationship with God in this lifetime, we can be assured that it will continue forever into the afterlife. God was about to prove through the Resurrection that He has the ability to maintain a relationship with us forever.

Jesus confirms that He is the Christ (the Greek word for Messiah).

4 Everything that Jesus did was to glorify God. Jesus' teaching ministry was completed and He was about to finish the work of salvation.
5 The Godhead has a special glory that Jesus left when He came in the flesh. Now that He was about to leave the earth, He is eagerly anticipating the return to that glory and the right hand of the Father.
6 The eleven faithful disciples were chosen ahead of time by God. This probably means He knew which people would be responsive to His message and would carry on Jesus' ministry after Jesus had gone.
7 Jesus had taught them and proved to them that He was the Messiah.
8 When we realize that Jesus is God, then we know He can not lie. The disciples did not understand everything that Jesus said, but they believed that what He said was true. The words and deeds they could understand gave them confidence to believe what they did not understand.
9 During this difficult time, Jesus specifically prays for His disciples.

Those who believe in Jesus belong to God, and the Father has placed them in Jesus' care.

10 Jesus and the Father are both part of the Godhead. Thus, whatever belongs to Jesus also belongs to the Father. There is no way to belong to one without belonging to the other.

Just as Jesus always glorified the Father we glorify Jesus. By our faith and deeds, we honor Him.

11 Jesus is about to leave the world, so Jesus prays for the disciples whom will remain. Jesus specifically prays that they be "one." This means they should be of the same purpose and be tightly bound by love. When God protects us from the attacks of the world and the devil, it is easier for us to concentrate on our relationships with one another.
12 Jesus protected the disciples with the authority of the Father. During the time they spent with Jesus, the devil was not allowed to bother them. In fact, at times Jesus gave the disciples authority to drive out demons.

The word "perdition" comes from the root for lost, and indicates that Judas Iscariot was never a "part of the team," despite the outward appearance (Wycliffe). Spiritually, Judas had kept away from Jesus and did not respond to Jesus' message of repentance and salvation.

13 When we believe and obey Jesus, we gain His joy.
14 The world would eventually unleash its hatred on the disciples. The persecution would first come from the Jews that rejected Jesus, and later it would come from the governing authorities. Today, Christianity is illegal in some countries. In other countries, powerful political lobbyists try to limit the expansion of the Faith. This is ironic, politically, because Christians are charged by Jesus to be good citizens. However, Christian thinking is often the opposite of worldly thinking (e.g., self-sacrificing as opposed to selfish), and the world considers this "dangerous" enough to destroy.
15 Persecution from the world makes the Christian life difficult, but we are also God's witnesses to the world. We are the world's best hope of hearing the Good News of Jesus. God may not always protect us from the abuse of the world, but He will protect and strengthen our spirits. Satan will never regain possession of a person who is indwelled by the Holy Spirit.
16 Everyone is born into the world, but when the Christian is born again, he no longer belongs to this world. We remain here until our flesh gives way, but our hearts long for our eternal home in heaven.
17 Sanctification means separation. When the Christian believes in God, he is separated from the world spiritually and placed on "God's side."

God's word is truth. This means that His words are the unchanging fabric that underlies the universe. The physical world was sprung out of this truth, as recorded in Gen 1, but it was tainted by sin. Thus, the physical world (and man's mind) became deceptive. Finding God's truth now is often difficult because people must overcome the incorrect philosophies and beliefs of the world. However, God will assist those who earnestly seek the truth.

18 Jesus is God's ambassador to men, and He commissions us to be ambassadors for God. Christians are to carry on the ministry of Jesus.
19 Jesus is probably speaking of being sanctified by His death and resurrection. After His resurrection, His disciples would be sanctified from the world by the Holy Spirit.
20 For their benefit and for ours, Jesus makes it clear that the things He is speaking of apply to His current disciples and those who will follow Him later.

The implication is that the disciples will carry on Jesus' ministry and bring others to believe the Good News.

21 Jesus wants the same kind of closeness between His followers that exists within the Godhead. With the kind of love we are to have for one another, this should be easy. We all should be focused on our relationship with God, obedience to His word, and telling others about Him.

Unity within the Church is to be a witness to the world to the truthfulness of the Good News. Christians must earnestly commit to especially love all other Christians around them. Such unity will draw people from the lonely world who desire to know what true love is.

22 The close friends of famous people often get to share (or even participate in) that fame. In a similar way, as we move closer to God in spirit and obedience, we share His glory.

If many people head towards the same goal, they will eventually be together. Spiritually speaking, the closer we get to God, the closer we will be to one another.

23 When the Holy Spirit indwells us, the entire Godhead shares that indwelling because they are one God. All Christians are indwelt by the same God, and are thus unified. We have the same source of life and knowledge, and we have the same goals of obedience and eternal life with God. When the world sees the unity and love between Christians, they will know it is from God.

Sadly, it seems the world rarely sees unity in the Church today. On a global scale, we often see bitter rivalries between "denominations." On the local level we often see people that are practically strangers come together for an hour or two a week. Some are lonely and depressed, and only become more discouraged when no one seems to care about their needs. The solution can only be instituted by individuals within the Church. Each person needs to determine if he loves others the same way that Jesus loves him (and them). If not, he needs to determine how he can build relationships with others. This is not something that can wait until the "other person" starts. We each must act to build a community of believers that help each other spiritually, emotionally, and physically.

24 When we join Jesus in the eternal Kingdom, we will see Him in all His divine glory.
25 Jesus stressed repeatedly the importance of recognizing that He came from the Father and the Father sent Him. Both the Person of Jesus and His mission are of divine origin.
26 When we declare God's name, we share His love with others.