About Jesus - Steve Sweetman
Arrested (ch. 18:1-11)
learn at this point in time
Kidron Creek is where the priests used to dump the blood from the animal
sacrifices. I'm sure it was
not a very pleasant creek to look at.
see from verses 2 and 3 that Jesus had often come to this garden with His
disciples so Judas anticipated Jesus being their.
For this reason he came to the garden along with soldiers that were
sent from the chief priest and Pharisees.
These soldiers were temple guards employed by the Sanhedrin.
They were well equipped with weaponry as Jesus comments on later.
They were ready to take Jesus by force and maybe for some reason might
have anticipated a fight, but we know Jesus doesnít fight.
with the temple police described in the last paragraph were Roman guards,
or soldiers, as the NIV puts it. Note
that some of the soldiers had clubs and others had swords.
The temple police carried clubs while the Roman soldiers carried
don't know the exact number of temple police and Roman soldiers came to
arrest Jesus. Historians
estimate that there were anywhere from 200 to 600 men to arrest one man.
You might think this was overkill, but there was a great fear that
Jesus might have been leading a mass rebellion at the busiest time of the
year in Jerusalem.
verse 4 we learn that Jesus knew what was about to happen to Him.
John says that He knew everything that was about to happen to Him.
This would include Judas' kiss, Peter cutting off the soldiers ear,
and everything else. As He
entered the garden His heart must have been exceedingly heavy, knowing
that in a brief moment of time the end was about to begin.
sees Judas and the soldiers and asks, "Who is it that you want?"
Jesus knew who they wanted; He just wanted to hear them say it.
Iím sure that the words spoken by the betrayers would have been
recorded in the eternal books in Heaven and would be read back to those
who spoke these words on the Day of Judgment.
verse 5 they replied, "Jesus of Nazareth."
Jesus of Nazareth would have been the most human distinction these
men could have used;' and why not? They
did not believe that He was anything more than a man with great delusions
notes that Judas was standing with the soldiers as Jesus answered, "I
am He." John does not,
however, record that Judas kissed Jesus as we see in other gospel
accounts. Here is another one
of those great "I AM" statements that we have seen John record.
The fact that these words came out of Jesusí mouth caused these
men to fall backward to the ground, as seen in verse 6.
These werenít the words of a mere man from Nazareth. They were the words of God,
and when spoken, no one could stand in His presence.
If there is such a thing as being slain in the Spirit, this would
have been it. One can't help
but wonder what the soldiers thought about this as they attempted to stand
to their feet. This was in
fact a testimony to the fact of who Jesus really was.
verse 7, with the soldiers on the ground, Jesus asks them a second time,
"Who do you want?" It
is like once was not good enough for Jesus.
He wanted their words recorded in the annals of history forever.
Our own words often condemn us and their words certainly condemned
again the soldiers replied by saying, "Jesus of Nazareth."
verse 8 Jesus replied to them by saying, "I told you, I am He."
It is like Jesus was telling these men, "I have already told
you once. I am the one you are
looking for." It was at
the request of Jesus that they told Him who they were looking for the
second time. They might have
thought, "Donít get frustrated with us; youíre the one who has
asked us twice."
verse 8 Jesus then tells the soldiers to let His disciples go.
It was clear that the soldiers were about to arrest the eleven men
with Jesus. Remember, the
Roman soldiers expected that they were going to meet a mob who was going
to start a revolt. It would
have been normal for them to arrest the whole mob.
verse 9 John points out that by not harming the disciples was a
fulfillment of the prophecy where Jesus predicted that He would not lose
any of His disciples. See John
verse 10 John says that Peter pulled out his sword and cut off the high
priestís soldierís ear. This
is typical Peter. He would
rush in where others feared to go, but, this is not what Jesus wanted.
If you remember, Jesus told the Eleven on their way into
Matthew and Markís account we know that when Peter strikes the soldier,
the actual arrest had taken place. This
was an impulsive response by Peter to the arrest, but Jesus was to go to
His death willingly. There was
not to be any struggle. Peterís
actions almost blew the whole plan, but Jesus fixed things by putting the
ear back onto the soldierís head. Can
you imagine that? After Jesus
healed this man they still took Him away.
Again, one has got to wonder just how the soldiers felt upon seeing
this miracle. One might also
wonder how the soldier who Jesus healed felt about his ear being placed
back on his head. I wonder if
this man eventually became a believer.
think I can safely say that Peter wasn't trying to cut the soldiers ear
off. That would be a difficult
task. I think Peter was trying
to behead the soldier but simply missed.
verse 11 Jesus commanded Peter to put His sword away because He had to
drink of the cup that His Father gave Him to drink.
This was His Fatherís plan. He
had to willingly go through with it. This
reminds me of Isaiah 53 where we see that it pleased God to bruise His one
and only Son.
Hebrew culture the word "cup" as it is used here simply means
one's destiny. It was Jesus'
destiny to die on the cross and Peter, and no one else, would change this