John 17:1 says, “Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You” (NKJV). In this wonderful chapter we have the TRUE “Lord’s Prayer.” He is on His way to the cross to take the place of sinners in death and judgment and in this prayer He brings out God’s purposes in His death; namely, to bring glory to the Son and the Father, and to provide salvation for lost and guilty man. Let’s break this verse down.

“Father, the HOUR has come.” Jesus is referring to the HOUR OF HIS DEATH. His enemies had tried, in vain, to take Him and kill Him on many occasions, but in those instances, “His hour HAD NOT come.” John 7:30 and 8:20 state, “Therefore they sought to take Him, but no one laid a hand on Him, because His hour had not yet come…as He taught in the temple…not one laid hands on Him, for His hour had not yet come.” But now the hour had arrived, which Jesus had also announced publicly in John 12:23, “But Jesus answered them, saying, ‘The hour has come that the Son of Man should be glorified’.”

“Glorify Your Son.” Again, He is thinking of His impending death AND the glory He would receive from the Father for willingly laying down His life as a sacrifice for sin. This is seen beautifully in Philippians 2:8-9, “And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has HIGHLY EXALTED HIM and given Him the name which is above every name.” God was thoroughly satisfied with the work His Son accomplished on the cross and His acceptance of the sacrifice He made was proven by first raising His Son from the dead. Romans 6:4 declares that “Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father.” After His resurrection God raised Him up to heaven and gave Him the highest place in glory. This is taught clearly in Ephesians 1:20-21, “Which He (God the Father) worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come.”

“That Your Son also may glorify You.” We have just seen that the Father glorified the Son by exalting Him to His right hand in heaven; here we learn that after Jesus ascended to heaven He would glorify His Father. How would He do this? I believe there are many answers to this question but I would offer two that come to mind. The first one is found in the next two verses, “As You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him. And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” The Father is glorified by Jesus giving eternal life to those who are “dead in trespasses and sins.” In John 5:24-25 Jesus said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life. Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear shall live” (NASB). Every time a sinner turns to the Word of God in true repentance, they are actually hearing “the voice of the Son of God” and He GIVES THEM ETERNAL LIFE! And once a soul has eternal life, he has the capacity to “know the true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” This means he will enjoy intimate fellowship with the Father and the Son (see 1st John 1:1-3). This brings glory to the Father.

We had already quoted Philippians 2:8-9 to see the Father glorifying the Son; now let’s read on in verses 10-11, “that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to THE GLORY OF GOD THE FATHER.” The day is coming when everyone will “bow the knee and confess Jesus as Lord.” This act of acknowledging Who Jesus is (the “Lord of glory”) will bring eternal glory to the Father, for all of God the Father’s attributes and purposes will be seen in His Son. (281.5) (DO)