How many of us have heard others and even ourselves have personally wondered what the point of life is?
I don't know if there is another section of scripture that more clearly and repetitively lays out the purpose of Jesus' life and of our life, than those in John 17.
It reveals one of the most intimate talks Jesus ever has with our Father, and He does it for our benefit. He talks to Him about us. Yes, He prays over those who were there, as well as you and me.
I don't even know if it is possible to catch all of the word plays that reveal so much depth of meaning! Take verse 17, alone:
Jesus asks the Father:
"Sanctify them ( purify, consecrate, separate them for Yourself, make them holy) by Truth. Your Word is Truth. "
(I laughed that Pilate struggled with the concept of what Truth was, (18:38), even as he spoke it!) But then I thought more.
How quickly I have often read over this and elevated the ability of the scriptures alone to create in me truth, and rightness, and missed the correlation that really Jesus was always the Word, from the beginning, and Jesus was always the Truth, from the beginning....always my Sanctification, and my Purification.
(It reminded me of when He warned the Pharisees about their habit of searching the scriptures thinking that in that process alone they would hold eternal life, but the scriptures were only there to lead them to Him!) I admit I have been guilty at times of trying to find my righteousness in knowing truth, and getting every last bit of it right, feeling that might remove doubt and insecurity, but in doing so overlooked the need to trust & believe the Truth , (not my ability to know and discern truth) that would actually sanctify & redeem me. Pilate suddenly didn't seem so hard to identify with from that perspective.
"And this is eternal life: (it means) to know, ( to perceive, recognize, become acquainted with, and understand) You, the only true and real God, and (likewise) to know Him, Jesus, (as the) Christ ( the Anointed One, the Messiah), Whom You have sent." ( 17:4)
This Truth ( Jesus) set Himself apart, to obey the Father, so that God would be glorified and would receive all that He ever wanted, ( which was us!), through His obedience. Jesus says that is now what is being accomplished:
"I have made Your Name known to them and revealed Your character and Your very Self, and I will continue to make (You) known, that the love which You have bestowed upon Me may be in them ( felt in their hearts) and that I myself may be in them. ( 17:26)
You can't miss fact that Jesus began this whole prayer in excitement of the fact that the disciples had finally stated their full belief that Jesus has been sent by God, not just because of His miracles, but because they believed Him.
And He prays that the same will now be true of us. Here we find our God given purpose, if we ever doubted that He had one for us.
"But these are written in order that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, ( The Anointed One), the Son of God, and that through believing and cleaving to and trusting and relying upon Him, you may have life through (in) His name (through Who He is.) (20:31)
"That they all may be one ( just) as You Father are in Me and I in You, that they also may be one in Us, so that the world may believe and be convinced that You have sent Me." ( 17:21)
There are more out there who have yet to believe in our Christ. They only know of His name, or have heard of His good teachings or miracles. They only know of churches or goods works done in honor of Him.
But they need to know HIM.
So feel confident to fulfill your life's purpose today. Go believe Him. And go share your confidence to help others to believe Him too.