Passion Week: Thursday Devotions

Steve

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April 9, 2020

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Dear Family and Friends,

It is Thursday of Holy week, or what some like to call Passion week.  This is the final day that Jesus spends with his disciples before he is taken away to fulfill his purpose of seeking and saving those without hope by dying on the cross.  There is a lot that happens on this day starting with the Passover feast and the Jesus’ last supper with his disciples.  The following takes place; the meal, Jesus washes the disciples’ feet, He promises the Holy Spirit, He Predicts Peter’s denial, and after all of this says, “but I do as the Father has commanded me, so that the world may know that I love the Father. Rise, let us go from here.” (John 14:31) 

Jesus and his disciples, all but Judas Iscariot who has now left to go get the guards to arrest Jesus, are walking towards the garden of Gethsemane, where Jesus knew what was going to take place in the next few hours.  During this walk Jesus kept talking and teaching His disciples.  He talked about being the vine and the branches, He taught them about the loving one another as He has loved them (laying his life down for His friends), he warned them about the World’s hatred towards Him and believers as a whole, and then, He predicts the coming of the Holy Spirit (John chapter 15 &16).

Then in John chapter 17, Jesus changes gears.  This entire chapter is dedicated to Jesus praying.  From this chapter we learn that the world is a tremendous battle ground where the force’s under Satan’s power and those under God’s authority are at war.  Satan has a hatred for Christ as well as all of those who believe in Him.  Jesus prayed for His disciples.  He prayed that God would keep believer’s safe from Satan’s power, setting them apart and making them pure and holy, uniting them in truth!   And here is the awesome thing.  He didn’t just pray about his disciple’s that were with him that night.  He prayed for all His disciples, including us. 

John 17:20-26

20 “I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, 21 that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, 23 I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me. 24 Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. 25 O righteous Father, even though the world does not know you, I know you, and these know that you have sent me. 26 I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.”

Here Jesus is praying for all who would follow him, including you and others you know.  He prayed for unity, protection, holiness (to be set apart from the world).  These verses, and actually all of chapter 17 in the book of John always humble me.  See when I read these verses, it amazes me how Jesus, on this walk to the garden where chaos will ensue, PRAYS.  Yes, He prays for himself, but He also prays for his disciples that are present with Him that night, and then of all things He prays for us.  All those who believe in Him.  All those that are going to put their trust in Him for eternal life.  That is an amazing thought.  As we go through our day today with all the trouble, confusion, questions, and disunity in our world, we as believer’s can know that we were specifically prayed for by Him.  And this was done as He faced one of the hardest times in His life on earth.  And another lesson for us, in our troubles and our fears, let’s remember to pray for those all around us. 

What a great example of Jesus’ love for all.  As He walked to be arrested, soon to be beaten and hung on a cross, He prayed for us to experience unity in Him.

Dear Lord,

Thank you for your love.  Thank you for your words.  Thank you for all that you have done and continue to do.  We pray at this time that we would be unified and show your love to our broken world.  Lord we would ask that you would be with our leaders, that you would be with our healthcare workers.  That you would protect them.  And we pray for the victims of this horrible disease and their families.  Thank you, Lord, for who you are.  We love you.


In Christ name,

Amen

Love you and praying for you all!


Pastor Steve

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