John 17:1-5

Jesus said these things. Then, raising his eyes in prayer, he said: “Father, it’s time.  Display the bright splendor of your Son so the Son in turn may show your bright splendor.  You put him in charge of everything human so he might give real and eternal life to all in his charge.  And this is the real and eternal life: that they know you, the one and only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you sent.  I glorified you on earth by completing down to the last detail what you assigned me to do.  And now, Father, glorify me with your very own splendor, the very splendor I had in your presence before there was a world.  (John 17:1-5, The Message)

I wonder what it was like to listen when Jesus prayed. 

It must have been unbelievably profound to witness the Son relate to the Father in such an intimate way.  Who else could stand before God and claim complete obedience (John 17:4)?  And He did it, knowing what was before Him. 

And I wonder what it was like for Jesus to pray while He walked this earth.  I can’t even begin to imagine the flood of emotions for Him when He prayed, “Bring me into the glory we shared before the world began” (John 17:5, NLT).  He is the Alpha and the Omega, and yet He willingly chose to walk the dusty roads of this planet that He spoke into existence.

But nestled in the midst of this prayer that only the Son could share with the Father is a sentence that has profound implications for our lives:

Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.  (John 17:3)

Eternal life is to know Him. 

In an intimate moment between God the Father and God the Son, that is what was stated.  And so surely we should take great hope in the news that eternal life does not begin when we take our last breath. 

Whether we are eight years old, fifty-eight, or eighty-eight, new life begins the moment we recognize Him for who He is and believe Him.

And we know that the Son of God has come, and he has given us understanding so that we can know the true God.  And now we live in fellowship with the true God because we live in fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ.  He is the only true God, and he is eternal life.  (I John 5:20)