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Summary: God has chose us; to reveal Jesus into our lives; as our Lord; who in turn reveals God the Father; to forward his divine purpose on, and then return us to him in heaven. Simple really.

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This sermon was delivered to St Oswald’s in Maybole,

Ayrshire, Scotland on the 20th May 2012

(a Scottish Episcopal Church in the Dioceses of Glasgow and Dumfries).

Summary: God has chose us; to reveal Jesus into our lives; as our Lord; who in turn reveals God the Father; to forward his divine purpose on, and then return us to him in heaven. Simple really.

Acts 1:15-17, 21-26 Psalm 1 1 John 5:9-13 John 17:6-19

“Please join me in my prayer.” Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of our hearts; be acceptable in your sight, letting these words speak for you, to bless each and every one of us, in the name of Jesus, Amen.

John 17:6-19

Looking up to heaven, Jesus prayed, "I have made your name known to those whom you gave me from the world. They were yours, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. Now they know that everything you have given me is from you; for the words that you gave to me I have given to them, and they have received them and know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me. I am asking on their behalf; I am not asking on behalf of the world, but on behalf of those whom you gave me, because they are yours. All mine are yours, and yours are mine; and I have been glorified in them. And now I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one, as we are one. While I was with them, I protected them in your name that you have given me. I guarded them, and not one of them was lost except the one destined to be lost, so that the scripture might be fulfilled. But now I am coming to you, and I speak these things in the world so that they may have my joy made complete in themselves. I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to the world. I am not asking you to take them out of the world, but I ask you to protect them from the evil one. They do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to the world. Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. As you have sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify myself, so that they also may be sanctified in truth."

Introduction:

Today’s reading was only thirteen familiar verses, yet without close examination they do not jump out at us and appear to say little. In fact, once you have read them, you will want to read on to the next verses to find something bit more interesting, and a bit more relevant.

Well that was what I thought, until I had to prepare this sermon, and I just cannot believe how I overlooked them as they contain some surprising revelations. Let me explain.

To understand, the first question we must ask is; “why this prayer is so important”? And it is important, because it is the last prayer Jesus prayed publically before he was to face his accusers and death. It was his last chance to defend himself before his disciples; and it was his last chance to make peace with the world. It was also his opportunity to say mission accomplished; and the things he wanted to say, but held back until the end.


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