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August 05 , 2010

In the Shadow with Jesus: A Look at the High Priestly Prayer of John 17


What was Jesus thinking before his arrest?

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“Here’s what intrigues me about the high priestly prayer. It’s the record of the petitions Jesus made to his heavenly Father an hour or so before he was arrested. He spoke aloud, and John pieced together a remembrance of the Lord’s final intimate conversation with both God and his disciples. Here’s an opportunity to overhear what pressured the Savior’s heart as he moved quickly and finally toward the immense sacrifice he was called to make. Surely, what he said publicly at that moment is important for you and me to understand.”
Larry Armstrong, “Preface” to In the Shadow with Jesus

The author’s journey to the writing of this book began when he was in seminary, and it took him through H. C. G. Moule’s, The High Priestly Prayer, which he read in the early years of his ministry. He preached a series of sermons on the prayer after a few years in the pastorate. Then in Armstrong’s later career he preached another series of meditations, which reflected a more mature understanding of John 17 as Jesus’ final message to the disciples and us. Now the author has refined and enlarged on his understanding of the high priestly prayer in this volume.

If you’re trying to discover what was in Jesus Christ’s heart as he approached the cross and the end of his earthly work, this book will help you probe the depths of Jesus’ faith and struggle. It’ll also help you place yourself in the battle to believe and practice a vibrant Christian life. The high priestly prayer reveals what Jesus himself felt as he neared the end of his time on earth, as well has his hope for both the original disciples and those who follow him because of the disciples’ witness. Prepare yourself to understand better the content of your Savior’s heart and mind as he faced the cross.

Larry L. Armstrong graduated from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in 1975 and has served as pastor of churches in Massachusetts, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. He has retired from a full-time pastorate, but continues a preaching and writing ministry. He and his wife Elizabeth split their time between a home in Latrobe, PA and a cottage north of Pittsburgh.

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