“For their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they themselves also may be sanctified in truth.” John 17:19
The Greek word for “sanctify” here is hagiazo. It means, “To set apart for a holy purpose.” Did you catch that? It says a “holy” purpose. What is holiness? Holiness is godliness or God-like-ness. What is Godlike? God is love; therefore the foundation of holiness is love. And this being true, the Apostle John is here stating that Jesus was setting Himself apart for a purpose whose root principle was love!
What was that purpose? This setting Himself apart, fixing His gaze on Calvary, was “to the end that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed” (Luke 2:35). Jesus’ desire was that we might see the heart of God, that we might encounter the love that surges in His heart and the Father’s for each of us. That we might see the complete self-abandonment, the immense selflessness, the disinterested benevolence, and sheer concern for only our well-being and salvation with no thought or concern for Themselves. This is the Father’s heart toward you, dear friend. You are the most important thing to Him. You are the “apple of His eye” (Zechariah 2:8). He will risk and has risked all for you.
What is His hope in all this? Notice, not His motive, but His hope. That you might see “the truth” of what His inmost thoughts toward you are, and that this would awaken and inspire in you, His beloved, this same love; that by His love for you, love would be awakened. That the setting of Himself apart for you would cause you to also set yourself apart for Him. Seeing all He has given to us, without thought of Himself, His hope is that we, too, will take this life that He has given us with deep appreciation, and give this life back to Him in love. Do you want to be more deeply devoted to Him, dear Christian? Take time this week to notice how deeply devoted He is to you. May God bless your week. You are truly in my prayers.