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In the world but not of it

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My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one (John 17:15).

The post In the world but not of it appeared first on Lutheran Church of Australia.

by Sal Huckel

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My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one (John 17:15).

Read John 17:6–19

Today we read the section of Jesus’ prayer to his father for the disciples. We will look at some other sections of Jesus’ prayer later in the week. Perhaps we don’t often focus on this prayer dialogue, or even many others of Jesus’ prayers, such as the prayer for his friend Lazarus. We talk about the prayer Jesus taught us – but what stands out to us from reading this prayer of Jesus himself? What a privilege to be able to listen in on this intercession!

We learn of Jesus’ mission to the disciples now being complete – they have accepted his teaching. He is on his way to the cross after his final words to the disciples before his arrest. Jesus knows what is coming next for him on this earth – but he also knows what is coming next for his disciples. He glorifies the Father and prays for protection on his disciples, praying to the Father for their safety in his name. From all we have learned about prayer from Jesus himself, we know that there is an absolute certainty that his prayer to his Holy Father will be answered.

Jesus says that the disciples are not any more ‘of the world’ than he is! Jesus does not pray for the absence of suffering – but he prays for protection from the evil one. We sometimes use the words ‘in the world but not of it’ to describe ourselves or encourage others who suffer when following Jesus is ridiculed or challenged. We do well to remember this. Jesus will protect us from the evil one. But he isn’t necessarily going to ‘airlift’ us out of troubled situations. Current times demonstrate this all too clearly. But we are his children; he prays for us, and he is with us. We may need to remember that we are indeed not of this world, and we must resist temptation when it comes upon us. Or do we need to remember that we are supposed to be in this world? How can we share the truth of Jesus if we remain in a holy huddle, staying out of the world?

READ:  Prayer ventures: June 9

Who can you lift before the Lord today?

Father God, help us to must remember who we are, who we belong to, and that we are sanctified by the truth through Jesus’ death on the cross. Help us follow Jesus’ example to pray for others, just as Jesus did, even when we are facing our own troubles. Help us to put others’ needs before our own – a great indicator that we are in this world but not of it. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


The post In the world but not of it appeared first on Lutheran Church of Australia.

Source: Lutheran Church of Australia https://www.lca.org.au/in-the-world-but-not-of-it/

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