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Devotional - week of March 30, 2008


LIVING WITH JESUS

 

Father, I will that they also whom thou hast given to me be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory which thou hast given to me … John 17:24

  

One’s first thought of this prayer of Jesus likely is that He is praying that those who are His will be with Him in heaven when they leave this life. However, that explanation of what Jesus meant conflicts with what Jesus had said on an earlier occasion.

 

And I give to them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any pluck them out of my hand. My Father, who gave [them to] me, is greater than all; and none is able to pluck [them] out of my Father's hand.  John 10:28-29

 

Once a person belongs to Jesus, he will be with Jesus in heaven when he leaves this life. John 17:24, then, must mean something else. Romans 6:10 and 6:11 explain what Jesus meant.

 

Romans 6:10 says that Jesus is alive to God. This obviously means that He is with God the Father. Romans 6:11 says:

 

… reckon ye also yourselves to be … alive to God through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Romans 6:11

 

Since being alive to God means that Jesus is with God, our being alive to God would mean the same for us—while we are still in this life. The testimony of Paul in 2 Corinthians 2:10 indicates that he experienced what Jesus prayed for while he was still in this life.

 

Now whom you forgive anything, I also forgive. For if indeed I have forgiven anything, I have forgiven that one for your sakes in the presence of Christ. 2 Corinthians 2:10

 

One aspect of a believer’s spiritual resurrection is that He is seated in heavenly places. We experience what Jesus prayed for us in John 17:24 when we experience our spiritual resurrection. In Philippians 3:11-14, Paul testifies that his one desire is to have a continual experience of his spiritual resurrection.

 

All believers are in the same spiritual position and need only to experience it.