Bible Passage:John 17:9a
I ask on their behalf: I do not ask on behalf of the world.
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Here He pours forth His prayer indeed, and shows why He labors so much — that it is for His Christians. He now commends them to the Father, as those by whom or through whom He is to be glorified, that He would protect them in the world, together with those who could follow after them. We may speak with confident faith and conclude with all certainty that those for whom Christ prayed will be defended against all rage and fury of the devil, and against all sins and temptations of every kind. And here we hear with delight who it is for whom He prays: that is, for those who receive His Word and follow after Him with all their heart. But, on the other hand, it is terrible to hear what He then adds: I do not ask on behalf of the world. Here then let us look to it with all our soul, that we are not found in that multitude for whom Christ disdained to pray. But how does this work, that he refuses to pray for the world, when He Himself, Matt 5:5, has taught us to pray even for our enemies? To pray for the world and not to pray for the world are each right and good. There is this difference. For His Christians and all those who shall be converted, He prays that they may remain in a right faith, and continue in faith and prosper in it, and never depart from it; and that those who are not in the faith may turn from their former life and come unto it. But as the state of the world now is, raging as it does so furiously and tumultuously against the Gospel, it never in any way entered into His mind to pray that such madness might please God, or that He should knowingly and deliberately overlook and permit such a combined attack, but that He would oppose their furious attempts, and frustrate their impious designs.
Those haughty spirits, Lord, restrain,
Who o'er Thy Church with might would reign.
And always set forth something new,
Devised to change Thy doctrine true.
aka Pastor Robin Fish
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6
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