John 17:1-5 This is Eternal Life

In the Fall of last year we spent a good bit of time in the Upper Room Discourse found in The Gospel of John chapters 14-16.  In the following chapter, chapter 17, Jesus ends their gathering that night with a prayer.  It has been called by some the “High Priestly Prayer.”  The Lord Jesus prays about the work that he must accomplish, and He prays for His disciples.  I would like to spend the next few weeks diving into the mind of Christ.  Let us listen into His prayer and find out what His will entails.  This chapter is the longest of Jesus’ recorded prayers and is filled with valuable insights as it is spoken only hours before the cross.

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Jesus Spoke these Words

The Apostle informs us that Jesus continues to speak, but not in discourse.  We are told that Jesus’ eyes left the viewing of His disciples and lifted up to heaven.  This was the typical way a Jew would pray.  The dialogue with the disciples had ended, and Jesus’ conversation with the Father began.  Remember all the way back to John 2:4 when Mary urged Jesus to do something about the wine shortage at the wedding.  What did He tell her?  “My hour has not yet come.”  The Lord was constantly aware of time during His earthly ministry.  His brothers tried to get Him to go up to the feast in Jerusalem with them, and in John 7:8 Jesus responds, “. . . My time has not yet fully come.”  Several times the Lord escaped the crowds because His hour had not come.  Now, in the upper room with His closest disciples, He speaks to His Father and acknowledges that His hour had come.

When Jesus requests to be glorified, He means that He is ready for the Father to make the divine plan of redemption complete.  He is ready to suffer and die on the cross for the redemption of man and the defeat of the evil one.  He is ready to bear the penalty of man’s sin as the substitute.  He is ready to be raised from that death, and to ascend back to His rightful place.  That is what it means for Christ to be glorified.  The Father would be intimately involved in that glorification.

Jesus has been given the authority to enact the divine plan of salvation over all flesh.  The goal of the glorification of the Son of God is the gift of eternal life for man.  Listen carefully, life is in Christ!  (SEE John 1:4; 3:15-16; 4:14; 5:21 . . . .  Do I need to show you more?)  If you are going to be saved, it is going to be because of the person and accomplishments of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Are you leaning on Him or yourself?  Are you trusting in Him or yourself?  Let me make it simple: Do you talk much about Him or yourself?  Do you think much about Him or yourself?
Jesus glorifies the Father by giving life to people.

This is Eternal Life

There is only one true God and you must know Him to have eternal life.  You must also know the One whom God has sent, Jesus Christ.  Christ has come to reveal the Father.  In fact, you can not know the Father if you do not know Christ. 

Eternal Life = Knowing the Father and Son.  Knowing God is not a means of finding eternal life.  That in itself is eternal life.  It will take an eternity to search the depths of God.

Finished the Work

Jesus was so sure that He would follow through with the suffering that He says that He has completed the work.  The preexistence of the Son is acknowledged here.  He was the Word in the beginning, was with God, and in fact was God.  Jesus prays for Himself in the sense that He wills to be back in the place of glory that He had left.  Yet, this is not a selfish prayer by any means.  It is the Father’s plan that Jesus be exalted back to His place in glory, and it would mean victory for all who know and believe in the Son of God.  If Christ did not return to His exalted place, we would be shamed.  Jesus Christ sought glory in the cross.  You may think, why not military victory?  Why not economic victory?  Know this: the foolishness of God is greater than the wisdom of man.


These first five verses of Christ’s prayer are often said to be Jesus’ prayer for Himself.  As you can see, there is no self-seeking.  He prays that the Father’s will be done.  After all, the glorification that He is talking about is for the sake of mankind.  He bore our penalty as our substitute.  The glorification of the Lord Jesus Christ is our means of eternal life.

Christ trusted fully in the plan of God.  I would urge you to do the same.
Christ trusted fully in the plan of God, even when it caused suffering.  I urge you to do the same.

If we are to apply the accomplishments of Christ in our own lives, church, and community, then we must seek to find glory where He found glory.  He sought glory in sufferings and ultimately in His death on the cross.  If you are going to point someone to glory, if you want eternal life for them, you must point them to the suffering of Christ.  Life is found in Christ and no one else.

Romans 6:15-23 Holiness

God is not said to be mercy, mercy, mercy.
He is not said to be wrath, wrath, wrath.

The Bible says that God is holy, holy, holy.

Not just holy, but “holy, holy, holy.”
[Isaiah 6:1-5] [Revelation 4:2-8]

Sin is not the damaging of man, but the dishonoring of God.

[Romans 6:15-23] There is a principle that is universal- Everyone is a slave.

Paul teaches that in grace there is a liberating power, but a work of obedience and constraint that comes from a renewed mind and ultimately by the indwelling counsel of God’s Spirit. His Spirit in us will not allow sin in our lives.

Truly what has happened is that the Romans were delivered (handed over) to Christian doctrine. Becoming a Christian means being placed under the authority of Christian teaching. The NT is God’s expression of His will for believers.

In light of the holiness of God, we must pursue righteousness which produces the fruit of holiness.

[1 Peter 1 :16] “Be holy, for I am holy.”

Romans 3:21-26 The Gospel

1.  (1:17) Faith to Faith

Salvation is by Faith from Beginning to End

Now we see: Faith Not Law

2.  God’s Standard is Perfection

Good Outweighing Bad is Not Enough

3.  All are Guilty by Sin

All can be Righteous by Faith

Everyone has Sinned, Not All Believe

4.  Propitiation- Meeting Place for God/Man

In Christ God’s Wrath is Deflected

5.  Blood = Life, Soul’s Agony

6.  Talked About Our Reception of Grace,

Now we see God’s Initiative.

He is Both Just and Justifier.

Conclusion:  You Must be in Jesus Christ.




            Continue in a Spirit-Empowered Life

Matthew 8:28-34 Jesus, You Son of God

Introduction: We have come to the end of Matt chapter eight where we have been convinced of Jesus’ authority and power over disease and demon and his care for both familiar and stranger. Today, we conclude the chapter by learning something great about Christ and sad about man.

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Two Demon-Possessed Men [vv28-29]

Jesus has finally made it to the other side of the lake. The area in which Jesus and his disciples arrive was surely Gentile. One major clue that gives that fact away is the herd of pigs that was feeding near by. The pig is unclean according to the Law and Jews would have had nothing to do with them. Why would Jesus have gone into this Gentile territory? Surely, he did so to get away from the crowds that were pressing in on him and even fewer people would have hung around the tombs that were in that area. Yet, they are met by two demon-possessed men. Though, if you think about it, a graveyard is actually a likely place for evil spirits. Apparently there were caves that provided shelter or some of the tombs were possibly abandoned.

Matthew describes the two demon-possessed men as “exceedingly fierce” meaning that they were “hard to deal with, harsh, fierce, savage” (Morris, 209). The men were so violent that they had become a great threat to the community. Not only did anyone not want to pass by, but Matthew says that “no one could pass that way.” Normal men did not even have the ability to pass by the way of these two demoniacs. The twelve probably wanted to jump back in the boat.

When the disciples saw Jesus still the violent storm on the sea, they wondered who he could be. Matt 8:26-27 says, “Then He arose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. So the men marveled, saying, ‘Who can this be, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?’” Yet, the demons know exactly who Jesus is. It has been pointed out that “. . . to know Jesus yet hate him is demonic” (Carson, 218). It is amazing that these demons knew exactly who Jesus was/is and yet they still remained opposed to him. How many in this world are the same?

The demons approach Jesus and lash out at him with a harsh and hateful tone. They truly fear what Jesus, the Son of God, can do. So, they initiate the dialogue with two questions. The first question seeks to find the reason for Jesus’ coming into their territory. The demons and Jesus have nothing in common and to say the least, what they cry out is not an invitation. The demons recognize Jesus as the “Son of God” meaning that they know that he is the one sent from God, he is the Messiah. The second question is an interesting one. The demons want to know if Jesus had come to torment them. Several things can be acknowledged in this question. First, the demons know for a fact that they will be tormented in the end. Second, the demons know that Jesus will be their judge when the time comes. Third, the demons do not think that “here” (the current earth) is the place of their torment. This agrees with the rest of Scripture which declares that the “everlasting fire” was “prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matt 25:41). Fourth, the demons realize that there is an appointed time for their judgment and eternal torment. They may have some freedom now to roam around this planet tormenting mankind, but that time is limited. They will be judged and cast into the lake of fire by the Son of God. Lastly, no one can deny the preexistence of Christ from this phrase. How else would the demons know Jesus so well?

The Herd of Swine [vv30-32]

As I said before, that there is a “herd of many swine feeding” points us to the fact that this is Gentile territory. In both Jewish and Gentile territories there are demonic forces at work. Matthew sets the scene, as only an eyewitness can, by telling us that the herd of pigs was “a good way off from them.” The wording used refers to a good size herd and they were simply feeding with no thought to violence. I think it is interesting that the demons “begged” Jesus. That directs me to their genuine fear. They felt strongly that Jesus was going to cast them out of the men, so they request to be sent into the pigs. Why be cast into pigs? Two reasons have been offered: the demons hate God’s creation and they sought to cause trouble for Jesus (they end up killing the pigs which were someone’s property). With only the word “go” the demons obey what the Son of God commands. Not only do the winds and waves obey Jesus, but the demons do as well. Apparently the demons forced the pigs over a cliff and they drowned in the sea.

They Begged Him to Depart [vv33-34]

Those who tended to the pigs were surely blown away by the events that day. When the demons were cast into the pigs and they were suddenly killed, the attendants of the herd fled into the city. They found others and told everything that had happened to the demon-possessed men. Matthew gives us their reaction when he says, “And behold, the whole city came out to meet Jesus.” Surely they wanted to see this man who had power over the demons. They probably wanted to greet him and invite him to stay in their city for a while. They most likely wanted to learn more about him. They would want see the men who had been healed and thank Jesus for the miracle. Right? Wrong. . . “When they saw Him, they begged Him to depart from their region.” Wow.

Because the herd of pigs died, we learn a lesson about mankind from the reaction. Are the townspeople grateful for ridding two men of demons? No. Are they excited that the demons had been sent away from their community and humiliated? No. Are they in awe of Jesus? No.
One man said it this way, “They preferred pigs to persons, swine to Savior” (Carson, 219).
Mankind is selfish and unsympathetic. In our old sinful natures, we do not care about others but only ourselves. They did not care for the fate of the two men. They cared for the fate of their own personal property.


As we conclude, let us summarize a few lessons from this account.

1) Jesus had opposition from both the Jews and the Gentiles. Faith or rebellion are not characteristic of certain races or ethnicities.
2) Jesus has ultimate authority and power over the forces of Satan
3) Even the most horrible and harsh lives can be healed by Jesus
4) Mankind, in his sinful nature, is uncaring for others and opposed to Jesus Christ