Prayer and Intercession-continued

(John 17)

Recently I had the opportunity to spend time with an older brother. By this I mean someone I respect as a follower of Jesus, not necessarily one older in years.  This man, Thom Gardner, has served the Lord’s people in various capacities for many years.  He recently listed the prayers of Jesus during His earthly ministry including references we often miss.

The main thrust of his review of Jesus’ prayers was this; Jesus was always in communication with His Father. This emphasizes what I shared previously.  Our life of prayer is an intimate communion with our heavenly Father.  Jesus lived and walked in this state perfectly.  We are learning to walk in it.  In recent years I have heard frequent references to Enoch.  He walked with God and he had a testimony from God Himself that he was pleasing to God.  This is the essence of our life with Him.  Is He pleased, is He satisfied?  Enoch’s walk speaks of progress, of going on wherever the Lord may lead us.  Is He not still, and forever, the Good Shepherd?  Enoch found what had been lost in the garden.  There Adam had walked with God in the cool of the day.  Regarding Enoch, we do not see a time limitation.  I believe he walked with God 24/7.  God was so pleased with that man that He simply took him home, directly into His full presence, without the experience of physical death.

If Enoch, after the fall in the garden and before the day of Noah and the flood, could know such a lifestyle and receive such a blessing, how much more is available to us.  Jesus has been given all authority in heaven and on earth. He shares that authority with us as we mature.  This is what the disciples knew.  This included the 12 but also the 70.  Later it included the 500 who saw Him alive after His resurrection, and the 120 who were in one accord in the upper room.  I expect the 120 were a part of those 500 but let us not be distracted.  The disciples grew in the knowledge, first-hand experience, of the Lord.  It reached a high point at Pentecost, when each received the Holy Spirit in a full way.  Now, we who have known Him, whatever measure of experience we may have, are included in that group of witnesses.  This is what Jesus prayed in John 17.

We have mentioned Jesus’ prayers and communion with His Father. He is now our Father.  We have the same access, yes the very same access.  We are not pure as He is pure but we are called to purify ourselves, to go on in the process toward that goal.  If we say He abides in us, we ought to walk as He walked.  Enoch came to that place.  I have read a book by a man DeVern Fromke, entitled Unto Full Stature.  The cover includes the following, “(the author) challenges the believer to expect and attain that measure of spiritual stature which God intends – though often considered impossible.  He shows how God’s provision is completely adequate for reaching this stature.”  Again, this is exactly what Jesus asked for in John 17, that we would be one as He and the Father are one.  The culmination of His time on earth was for this purpose to bring us together with Himself into such union, such harmony, such synchronization with the Father.  It is for us to believe and press into that.

The way is not impossible. It is for this He calls us so that we might be part of His ministry of intercession even in this life.  Reign in the midst of your enemies is His call to His nation of kings and priests.  We begin to know this in this life.  This is not just for the future.  I often realize that whatever that future reigning and authority and reward is about, He intends for us to be doing His works of love, compassion, healing, and deliverance now.  My hope for later is to be with Him, close to Him.  As a member of His bride, my goal, my heart is to one with Him.  What other goal is worthy of pursuit?

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