Protected from Satan

Scripture: John 17:15, ‘I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one.’

 

Observations: John 17 is one long prayer, often referred to as Jesus’ high-priestly prayer. In it Jesus prays to his Father, and he particularly prays for his disciples and for those who will come after them, the church. And while Jesus is about to return to the Father and leave this world (v11,13), his disciples will remain. And so he asks his Father, not that he ‘take them out of the world, but that he keep them from the evil one.’ Jesus knows that his followers have a task to do, so he prays that God would protect them from Satan. Jesus has just prayed ‘I have guarded them, and not one of them has been lost,’ and now he asks God to guard them. Jesus’ disciples faithfully proclaimed the gospel for many decades before they were finally martyred for their faith. Jesus’ pray ‘do not take them out of the world,’ was obviously a temporary one, they certainly weren’t meant to live forever. But his prayer that God ‘keep them from the evil one,’ proved true forever, none of them gave up on their faith, they all died professing their love for Jesus Christ.

 

Application: Like the disciples our lives have a purpose to bring glory to God and to proclaim the gospel of His Son Jesus Christ. That will look different for each one of us, but what it means is that like Jesus we ask God ‘not to take us out of the world, but to protect us from Satan.’ And we don’t know when we will be taken out of this world, but we do know that if God holds us in his hands he will never let us go (Jn 10:29). And we do know that the good work God started in our lives he will bring to completion (Phil 1:6). And we do know that we have been given the Holy Spirit as a guarantee of eternal life (2 Cor 1:22). We faithfully serve God knowing that he is faithful towards us.

 

Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, as long as You give me breathe, I want to faithfully serve Your purposes here on earth. Lord, help me bring glory to Your name in both how I live and what I say. Lord, may my character reflect that of Jesus Christ, and may His name be always on my lips. And Lord, I pray that You will protect me from the Evil One. Lord, I know that Satan uses the things of this world to distract me from serving You, I am aware of Hs schemes, but help me to use the armour You have given to defend myself against him. I know that Your Holy Spirit who lives in me is greater than Satan, so help me step out in confidence, knowing that You are faithful, that You are with me, and that You will never let me go. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

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