On the night of His arrest, Jesus and His disciples went from the Upper Room to the Garden of Gethsemane. To get there, they crossed the Kidron Valley. (Qidrown in Hebrew = dusky place) They would have waded through the blood of the animals being sacrificed in the Temple.
In the Garden, Jesus prayed. He prayed for Himself. He prayed for His disciples. And He prayed for all believers, including us today. (John 17, the longest prayer in the New Testament)
There Jesus was betrayed by a friend one of His followers, a disciple by… a kiss. We know the story of Judas Iscariot. Judas had left the Upper Room to inform the officials where Jesus could be found.
It was a clear night, under a full moon. (We know the moon was full because it was the Passover) The contingent sent to arrest Jesus was large and fully armed. It included a cohort of Roman soldiers (600 men) plus Temple guards. They carried torches as shown in the picture above. Why?
They expected a fight. They expected to have to search through the vegetation of the Garden to find Jesus.
They found Jesus waiting, ready to surrender. Only Peter offered resistance when he cut the ear off of a guard. Jesus healed the severed ear and rebuked Peter. Jesus could have called a horde of angels. He didn’t. Jesus went willingly, obeying The Father’s command.
Willingly … consider that. Our Savior was fully human, God incarnate. He knew what was ahead. He knew how He would suffer.
He went willingly .
Jesus was betrayed by one of His closest associates, by a friend.
Please listen to this poignant song by Michael Card. Why?
Why? So that through Jesus’ blood we are freed from our own sins.
Alive in The Word
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