Archive for September 11th, 2010

John 18

John 18 takes us to the night of Jesus betrayal.  Jesus had taken the disciples to a familiar garden where He “met often there with His disciples”.  This was the place where the betrayal would take place, as Judas Iscariot knew it well having been there with the twelve on many occasions before.  Scripture tells us that Jesus knew “all that would happen to Him”.  He knew that going into the garden would lead to His betrayal and ultimately His crucifixion.  He knew the pain and torture He was about to endure.  He could have gone somewhere else that night – taken a different tactic – and avoided it all.  But He didn’t because obedience to the Father and love for you and me wouldn’t let Him.  He endured the shame and the Cross to pay the price of our sin.  He chose to do that – He wasn’t forced – but He did what He did out of love.  The disciples weren’t quite on that page and “Simon Peter, having a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant and cut off his right ear”.  Loyal follower who is defending His Master.  Can’t blame Peter for that.  But Jesus tells him to put the sword away and allows things to proceed.  He is taken to Annas, father in law of Caiaphas the high priest.  We learn from this account that two of the disciples were with Jesus.  “Since that disciple was known to the high priest, he entered with Jesus into the court of the high priest”.  So one went in, but Peter remained outside, close at hand, but not in the middle of it all.

They accuse Jesus of all sorts of things and He gives this simple defense: “I have said nothing in secret”.  Check out my record.  Jesus is challenging their accusations because He has lived a public life and was willing for the scrutiny.  Of course their motive had nothing to do with what He had said.  “One of the officers standing by struck Jesus with his hand, saying, is that how you answer the high priest”?  Even those who were part of the kangaroo court process didn’t really know what was going on.  Jesus is sent to Pilate and accused of kingdom building.  “My kingdom is not of this world” was Jesus reply.  But Pilate, like Caiaphas before him, has no clue what they are dealing with.  Jesus is not there to defend His teaching and life – He knew exactly why He was on earth and that the time had come for Him to pay the price for sin and go to the Cross.  “For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world – to bear witness to the truth”.  Jesus was here to point us to the truth.  His life was not about self or building an empire of His own.  It was about pointing people to God’s truth and the coming judgment.  He was the messenger.  Pilate still doesn’t get it, but asks a very interesting question that still plagues mankind to this day: “What is truth”?  The answer is – God’s Word.  That is truth.  God wrote it for us so we could know the truth and be set free by it.  Do you know it?  Have you read it?  Are you living by the truth?

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