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Saved and Safe Forever

Rev. Michael Calvert, Ph.D., December 11, 2016
Part of the Advent 2016 series.

As we continue to celebrate the blessed season of Advent, we will again turn our attention to John 17 this coming Lord’s Day. We will be considering our Lord’s prayerful words as recorded in 17:11-13. Of course, these are the things for which Jesus prayed out loud in the hearing of the Disciples on the night of His betrayal. And as we ponder the specific things He said to the Father in this payer we discover an infinite well of eternal comfort and assurance.

In these verses Jesus recalls to the Father how He—the Incarnate Son of God—has faithfully discharged His duties and carried out His mission to the world with perfection. He has accomplished all of the Father’s will and, more specifically, He has protected all of His sheep and delivered eternal life to them. In verse 12 we learn that Jesus has “kept” the Disciples in the “name” of the Father. Also in verse 12, we see that the Faithful Son—the Good Shepherd—has “guarded” His sheep and “not one” of His precious elect has “been lost.”

As we contemplate these beloved truths from the lips of our Savior, we also need to remember that they apply directly to us. For as Jesus says in verse 20, His prayer is also “for those who will believe in Me through their word.” We too must find the divine source of our joy and comfort in these things: The Father has given Jesus the gift of sheep to redeem, and this includes each of us who have confessed that He is Lord. And then, Jesus has given to these very sheep the blessing of everlasting life, along with everything else that this new life includes, both now and later. And, there’s more! For at this very moment, Jesus continues to give to those whom He has saved!

So it’s true after all. Christmas is all about giving! But it is first and foremost about God’s gift to His Son in eternity, and the Son’s gift of eternal life to us!