On the Way to Gethsemane
It was the night Jesus was taken, arrested, illegally tried by the Sanhedrin, and taken to Pilate.
Jesus was to have the passover feast with His disciples. He had washed their feet…Judas still being there.
(John 13:4-12. What an act of great mercy;….rejected mercy…..but it shows the mercy of God….one last act to Judas, though his heart was too greedy to receive it. It is either sin or Christ which rules within us.)
Then Jesus sat down and announced that one was there that would betray Him. None knew that it wasn’t them…..
(All thought they would be loyal…..but they did not realize their own weaknesses.)
Jesus shows the betrayer is Judas….giving him the first piece of the passover bread.
Judas goes out:
John 13:30 “He then, having received the sop, went immediately out; and it was night.”
(Terribly, it would never be “light” for him again.)
Then the Lord goes on to begin a new service;….what we call the communion service: the disciples given broken bread….to symbolize His body being broken for us….and the wine…symbolizing His blood being shed in sacrifice for our sins; and their being partakers of His gift….
Matthew 26:26-28 “And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.
And He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it;
For this is my blood of the New Testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”
They left the house, and began to walk to Gethsemane.
On the way, Jesus explains to them of His coming death and resurrection:
Mark 14:27-28 “And Jesus said unto them, All ye shall be offended because of Me this night: for it is written, I will smite the Shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered.
But after that I am risen, I will go before you into Galilee.”
Peter emboldened by the fact that Jesus had not said he was the betrayer, confidently says he will never leave Him….
But Jesus speaks to warn…..and comfort him….
Luke 22:31-32 “And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:
But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not; and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.”
Then Jesus begins to speak of the future….
…..a future without His bodily presence with them…..
…..beginning His final conversation with them, before His crucifixion:
John 14:1 “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in Me.”
He begins to turn their eyes to Someone else….always with the provision of His love and peace.
“Trust Me that I will not leave you as Heavenly orphans,……but will send the Holy Spirit to take My place”…..(John 14:16, 18)
Twice He says that “whatsoever ye shall ask in in My name, that will I do….”(John 14:13-14)
The theme this part of His discourse is: peace….don’t be afraid, I will give you peace.
John 14:27 “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, giveth I unto you, let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”
Then Jesus speaks of their future work, letting them know….even in this, He will not leave them….He will be their strength and life, in the time to come;…..as the Vine is to the branches.
He promises them fruit.
(Seven times He mentions the “fruit” that comes by abiding in Him….once He mentions the end of those branches which do not bear fruit, even though they are in the vine.)
John 15:5 “I am the Vine, ye are the branches. He that abideth in Me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit; for without Me ye can do nothing.”
And what is that fruit?
First the fruit of joy….
John 15:11 “These things have I spoken unto you, that My joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.”
Then the fruit from bearing witness of Jesus….
John 15:26-27 “But when the Comforter is come, Whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, He shall testify of Me;
And He also shall bear witness, because ye have been with Me from the beginning.”
(Once He says to ask in His Name.)
Jesus turns now to showing them what the world will do, now that He will go away…
John 16:2 “They shall put you out of the synagogue; yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service.”
But even in this,…..He has provided for them.
The first provision being the Holy Spirit….
John 16:7 “Nevertheless I tell you the truth; it is expedient for you that I go away; for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send Him unto you.
The other provision: the truth….
John 16:13 “Howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He will hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come.”
In the truth, there is great safety…..we know what the Lord says,…..therefore we know what we need to ask for….
And again, three times He says to ask in His name: John 16:23, 24, 26.
He here tells them beforehand that He had overcome the world.
Remember, this is even before they took Him,…He was beaten,…He was mocked and given over to the cries of the mob,….and crucified……
….He knew all that was going to happen to Him; and He said they would treat His disciples the same way….
John 16:33 “….but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”
(This He calls us to do in Revelation 3:21)
And then, as He grows closer to Gethsemane….(for He will be arrested before they leave)…..
He becomes very, very intimate….for He begins to pray to the Father:
John 17:1 “These words spake Jesus, and lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify Thy Son, that Thy Son also may glorify Thee:”
He was showing us the pattern for our lives….glorify God, and He will honor us.
Telling how He had finished the work God had given Him to do….so we should “finish our course”.
He tells the Father that He had manifested His Name (verse 6)…..and His Words (verse 8, 14)
And then, right then….He begins to pray for them:
John 17:9 “I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which Thou hast given Me; for they are Thine.”
He prays that they will be kept:
John 17:11, (15) “And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to Thee, Holy Father, keep through Thine own name those whom Thou hast given Me, that they may be one, as We are.”
He prays they will be sanctified,
John 17:17, (19) “Sanctify them through Thy truth: Thy Word is truth.”
Five times He prays that “they may be one, as We are.” (John 17:11, 21-23 )
That they may know God’s love through Christ Jesus.
John 17:26 “And I have declared unto them Thy name, and will declare it; that the love wherewith Thou hast loved Me may be in them, and I in them.”
(Sixteen times in these chapters Jesus speaks of love
Six times He speaks of joy)
In this last part of His talk with them, He prays also for us: You and me, there, on His walk to Gethsemane….
John 17:20 “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on Me through their word;”
Then He came to the garden: All the things He needed to say, were said….everything would proceed according to the Father’s Will (Acts 2:22-23).
The Nation stood on the brink…..what would they do with Jesus, Who was called the Christ?
But it was in this very important, intimate discourse with His disciples….that Jesus showed His Father’s heart and plan for them…..and us.
Jesus wants us to know His peace…..
…..His purpose for each of us: abide in Him and bear fruit……
…He wants us to know His overcoming amidst the tribulation and suffering of this present world;…and because He has, we can too……
……and HIs prayer—intimate and full of tender love for those who follow Him.
Will we walk with Him this day, and hear these things for ourselves?