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Summary: A sermon for the 7th Sunday of Easter

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7th Sunday of Easter

John 17:1-11

Unity

1* ¶ When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven and said, "Father, the hour has come; glorify thy Son that the Son may glorify thee,

2* since thou hast given him power over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom thou hast given him.

3* And this is eternal life, that they know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent.

4* I glorified thee on earth, having accomplished the work which thou gavest me to do;

5* and now, Father, glorify thou me in thy own presence with the glory which I had with thee before the world was made.

6* ¶ "I have manifested thy name to the men whom thou gavest me out of the world; thine they were, and thou gavest them to me, and they have kept thy word.

7 Now they know that everything that thou hast given me is from thee;

8* for I have given them the words which thou gavest me, and they have received them and know in truth that I came from thee; and they have believed that thou didst send me.

9* I am praying for them; I am not praying for the world but for those whom thou hast given me, for they are thine;

10* all mine are thine, and thine are mine, and I am glorified in them.

11* ¶ And now I am no more in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to thee. Holy Father, keep them in thy name, which thou hast given me, that they may be one, even as we are one.RSV

Grace and peace to you from our Lord and Saviour, Jesus who is the Christ. Amen

Our gospel lesson this morning is part of the high priestly prayer that Jesus prayed the night before he died. He prayed this part of the prayer for the disciples especially verse 9 through 11. In these verses Jesus is praying for the unity of the disciples to one another and the unity of the father.

This text fit well into the scheme of the church year, as we just celebrated the ascension of Jesus on May 1. We will be celebrate Pentecost next week the birthday of the church. So it is fitting that we have this text this Sunday where Jesus is praying for the church, the disciples and are unity together.

Listen to verse two verses again:

"9* I am praying for them; I am not praying for the world but for those whom thou hast given me, for they are thine;

10* all mine are thine, and thine are mine, and I am glorified in them.

11* ¶ And now I am no more in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to thee. Holy Father, keep them in thy name, which thou hast given me, that they may be one, even as we are one."

In verse 9 Jesus says they are thine, which means the disciples are the Father’s. In verse 10 he says the disciples are his and because they are his they are also the Father’s disciples. And in verse 11, he prays that the disciples are one with each other, just as Jesus and the Father are one.

The theme that runs through theses verse is unity of Spirit and unity of body. Jesus is praying for the unity of the disciples to each other and unity to his teaching as well as unity to Him and the Father.

In other words Jesus is praying for the unity of the church which will come out of the lives of these disciples. There is a definite obligation for us as followers of Christ to uphold, to pull-together, to encourage, to comfort, to be there for another member of the community with comfort, cheer and love as we bind ourselves together in this community of Christ, known as the church.


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