1After Jesus had finished speaking to his disciples, he looked up toward heaven and prayed:
Father, the time has come for you to bring glory to your Son, in order that he may bring glory to you. 2And you gave him power over all people, so he would give eternal life to everyone you give him. 3 Eternal life is to know you, the only true God, and to know Jesus Christ, the one you sent. 4I have brought glory to you here on earth by doing everything you gave me to do. 5Now, Father, give me back the glory I had with you before the world was created.
On that infamous night of Christ’s betrayal and arrest, somewhere between the Upper Room and the Garden of Gethsemane Jesus had an intimate conversation with his Father. Here, recorded in chapter 17, he makes a request that reaches down through the centuries to you and me today. Amazingly, his request wasn’t to be rescued from death but rather that his death would have maximum impact.
This is one of the few places in Scripture where the compound title “Jesus Christ” is used. It identifies him as being the Revealer of the Father: the Saviour – Messiah, the Anointed King. In this prayer he affirms his own deity – the son of God.
In coming to earth Jesus did not renounce his deity but rather assumed humanity and willingly subjected himself to the confines of living in a human body. Because he did that, many people did not believe that this human body named Jesus was actually the incarnate God himself.
His prayer here was that through his death and resurrection the world would know not just that he was God incarnate but that God himself was real and that God would grant to all who believe in him the great gift of eternal life.
When Jesus asked his Father in verse five to “glorify me” he was not asking for popularity or acclaim but rather that he be returned to his full state of being one with his Father now that he has completed the task for which he has been sent to earth.
Thank you Jesus for being obedient to your Father in coming to this world so that we, by knowing you, could also know our heavenly Father.