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Sermon Notes + 7.7.2024


I Am Not Praying for the World
John 17:9
Dr. Tony Chute, Lead Pastor

Overview: The high priestly prayer demonstrates the mediatorial role of Jesus as He prays for His church without praying for the world. Throughout the prayer, Jesus notes various distinctions between the church and the world: those who comprise the church have been given to Jesus by the Father; they are the recipients of eternal life; they know God; they have received the words of Jesus as the words of God; they believe Jesus came from the Father; they bring glory to the Father and the Son; they are kept in the family of God by the grace of God; they have the joy of the Lord; they are hated by the world; they are sanctified in truth; they are one with the Father and the Son; and someday they will be with Jesus in glory. The world does not share these characteristics or receive these benefits, but Jesus is an all-sufficient savior who will bestow this and more on all who call upon His name.

01. Jesus prays for the church but not for the world; therefore, we should trace every spiritual blessing to the mediatorial role of Christ on our behalf.

02. Jesus prays for the church but not for the world; therefore, we should heed God’s command to live as distinct people who are in but not of the world.

03. Jesus prays for the church but not for the world; therefore, we should seek the good of those in the world by pointing them to the Lord Jesus Christ.


01. What is your first reaction to Jesus’ statement, “I am not praying for the world”? Does it seem to contradict other statements in Scripture, like John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life”?

02. A mediator is one who goes between opposing parties to reconcile them. In what ways does Jesus serve as mediator between God the Father and followers of Christ? Would we be able to approach God in our sins without a mediator? How does Jesus’ ongoing ministry of intercessory prayer continue to provide benefits for us in this life? See Hebrews 7:11-28 for further insight.

03. In what ways does Jesus distinguish the church from the world in this chapter? What benefits or characteristics are you grateful for the most? Consider what the world, apart from Christ does not have. How would your life be different if Christ were not praying for you and providing the blessings listed in this chapter?

04. Even though Jesus does not pray for the world in this passage, in what ways does He still govern the world, provide for the world, and demonstrate His love to the world? How does God’s common grace account for human progress in spite of the world’s rebellion against God? What does common grace teach us about the heart of God towards those who have no heart for Him? See Matthew 5:44-45 and Acts 14:16-17 for further insight.

05. What have you abandoned, as a Christian, that sets you apart from the world? What have you embraced, as a Christian, that sets you apart from the world? What are you currently doing to engage non-believers with the gospel so they can see a way out of the world and come to the arms of Christ?

For Further Reading: John Bunyan, Christ A Complete Savior: The Intercession of Christ and Who are Privileged in It (first published 1692; Curiosmith, 2012).