Read verses 6-12
Q: In the opening of this prayer, the main thought was that Jesus had given His life. What does He appear to be giving in this section?
A: The revelation of the Father’s name.
Application: In the Old Testament God revealed His name as the great I AM (Ex. 3:11-14). Jesus repeatedly employed this name in revealing His true nature:
- Jn. 6:35—“I am the Bread of Life”
- Jn. 8:12—“I am the Light of the world”
- Jn. 10:9—“I am the Gate”
- Jn. 10:11—“I am the Good Shepherd”
- Jn. 11:25-26—“I am the Resurrection and the Life”
- Jn. 14:6—“I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life”
- Jn. 15:5—“I am the Vine”.
Jesus here states that they came to believe He is the Messiah because “the words which You gave Me I have given to them; and they received them and truly understood that I came forth from you”. (v.8) In other words, “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ”. (Rom. 10:17) Salvation came from faith in the Word, not faith in the signs Jesus performed in the course of confirming the Word. Nowhere in this prayer does Jesus even mention a sign or miracle performed in the course of His earthly ministry.
Q: But what is the greater teaching about God—the great I AM—which Jesus revealed?
A: That God is our heavenly Father. Jesus invokes the word “Father” more than 50 times in His final teachings recorded in John 13-17 and more than 120 times in the Gospel of John overall.
Point: Jesus made it clear in His teachings recorded in John that He was sent by the Father, He was equal to the Father, and that His words and works came from the Father. It was a clear claim to deity which He communicated in the course of performing many miracles, but only those who took Him at His Word came to know and accept Him as the Messiah.
Q: What is different about how Scripture handles names from the way we now use them in everyday life?
A: We use names as a label to identify an individual or location; in Scripture names were assigned to people and places which paralleled something about their character or nature. Jesus is really talking about revealing the nature of the Father through Him as exemplified in the various aspects of His character conveyed in each of the seven “I AM” statements. When He says, “I have manifested Your name” (v.1), it means that He has visibly revealed the nature of God.
No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.
— John 1:18
Q: What is the lesson for us personally that we should get from the fact that while Jesus, in human form, was on earth He was able to guard and protect those who believed in Him?
A: We have the assurance that a glorified Savior in Heaven is surely able to guard and keep us not just in the course of this life, but to deliver us into the one to come.
Q: Why would the gift of Believers to the Son from the Father have a powerful connection to the covenant relationship of God’s people under the Old Testament?
A: The disciples and those who accepted Jesus as Messiah were Jews who belonged to the Father by creation and covenant, but now they are presented as a gift in order to belong to the Son. This is a powerful illustration of the fact that in Christ the entire Old Covenant is fulfilled.
Q: What are the divine resources available to us listed in this section?
- (v.7-8) We have His Word which reveals all we have in Christ.
- (v.9) We have the Son interceding for us to keep us safe and secure. (Rom. 8:34; Heb. 11:41-42)
- (v.11) We have the fellowship of the church.
Q: So what about Judas? Why could Jesus not keep Him safe like the others?
A: Judas was never one of Christ’s own: he was not a Believer, (Jn. 6:64-71) he was never cleansed, (Jn. 13:11), he had not been among the chosen, (Jn. 13:18), and he had never been given to Christ. (Jn. 18:8-9)
Point: Judas is NOT an example of a Believer who “lost” their salvation, but an example of an unbeliever PRETENDING to have salvation who is ultimately exposed.
Application: We are overcomers because we know His name—that is, understand His nature—and therefore share His life both now and in eternity.