1)Listen to Podcast
The Family Table: That They Might Be One
1. Jesus’ High Priestly Prayer : On the night before His death, after sharing the Last Supper with His disciples,
Jesus prayed powerfully for those disciples, and those who would come after them. He prayed that the Father
would keep them in His name (John 17:11-16), that the Father would sanctify them (vv. 17-19), and that His
disciples may be one (vv. 20-23). Read those last four verses, 17:20, 21, 22, 23, slowly and carefully. What
stands out to you?
2. That They May Be One : Take another look at the unity Jesus prays for in John 17:20-23. What is the model
for this unity? And what is its effect on the world? Finally, and this is the tough part, how are we doing? Was
Jesus’ prayer answered? In considering this question, start first with the big picture – the church in the whole
world. What has the church done well, in response to Jesus’ petition, and where might it need further growth?
Lastly, examine with prayerful, honest, and gracious charity our own church.
3. United around the Table : Jesus begins His high priestly prayer with a testimony to the Father: “I…accomplished
the work that you gave me to do” (17:4). Accomplished …past tense. This is before Jesus went to the cross!
What was this “work”? Look in 17:6-8 for the answer (see also vv. 25-26). Before Jesus returned to His
Father’s right hand, that good carpenter was intent on one final work of carpentry – a family table. Unity as an
artificial concept is meaningless unless a group is united around something. According to John 17:6-8, what is
Jesus’ newly formed family united around?
Once again, these questions should be answered in front of a mirror. They may take a little thought because I suspect, for most of us, the first and instinctive answer to all of these question is “No!”
Is there anyone (or group of people) I really don’t think are “equally necessary, equally important”?
Is there someone (or group of people) I struggle to see as “equal” before God?
Is there anyone who I have forgotten is hurting as much as I am?
What can I do to begin the healing process?