Luke- Week 23- Day 2

(49)  When they which were about him saw what would follow, they said unto him, Lord, shall we smite with the sword?

(50)  And one of them smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear.

(51)  And Jesus answered and said, Suffer ye thus far. And he touched his ear, and healed him.

(52)  Then Jesus said unto the chief priests, and captains of the temple, and the elders, which were come to him, Be ye come out, as against a thief, with swords and staves?

(53)  When I was daily with you in the temple, ye stretched forth no hands against me: but this is your hour, and the power of darkness.

Luke 22:49-53

Explanation:

The 11 disciples besides Judas were there, too.  They saw and perceived what was about to happen, and so they ask a pertinent question.  “Lord shall we smite with the sword?”.  They had been talking about swords with Jesus earlier that night in the upper room after the passover meal.  Look earlier in the chapter at verse 35:

(35)  And he said unto them, When I sent you without purse, and scrip, and shoes, lacked ye any thing? And they said, Nothing.

Luke 22:35-36

As part of the discipleship process that Jesus had sent the disciples out two-by-two.  It wasn’t just the 12, either.  There were more.

(1)  After these things the Lord appointed other seventy also, and sent them two and two before his face into every city and place, whither he himself would come.

(2)  Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest.

(3)  Go your ways: behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves.

(4)  Carry neither purse, nor scrip, nor shoes: and salute no man by the way.

Luke 10:1-4

When they went out here in Luke 10, God told them not to take those things.  He wanted them to learn to trust the Lord for what they needed.  But in chapter 22, He told them something different because the times were changing.  Look at verse 36:

(36)  Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.

Luke 22:36

Why was this necessary?  Why was Jesus saying that now they should have a sword?

(37)  For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, And he was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have an end.

Luke 22:37

Jesus had told them that the Old Testament was prophesying that He would be reckoned “among the transgressors”.  Jesus was about to be treated as a criminal.  This meant that it was in God’s will for Him to be arrested, tried, and killed.  This wasn’t the first time that Jesus had told them, including Peter, what would happen to him.

(18)  And it came to pass, as he was alone praying, his disciples were with him: and he asked them, saying, Whom say the people that I am?

(19)  They answering said, John the Baptist; but some say, Elias; and others say, that one of the old prophets is risen again.

(20)  He said unto them, But whom say ye that I am? Peter answering said, The Christ of God.

(21)  And he straitly charged them, and commanded them to tell no man that thing;

(22)  Saying, The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be slain, and be raised the third day.

Luke 9:18-22

In a parallel passage in Mark when Jesus had told them these things, Peter rebuked Jesus for it.

(31)  And he began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.

(32)  And he spake that saying openly. And Peter took him, and began to rebuke him.

(33)  But when he had turned about and looked on his disciples, he rebuked Peter, saying, Get thee behind me, Satan: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but the things that be of men.

Mark 8:31-33

So when the chief priests and elders of the temple came out with their guards, the disciples should have known that this was coming.  They should have understood that this was all a part of God’s plan.  Peter should have understood that Jesus was to be numbered with the transgressors, but instead He was still trying to fight.  The reason Jesus told them to sell their cloak and buy a sword was to let them know that there would be a time of persecution coming for those who were following Jesus.  They needed something for personal defense, not to wage war in order to bring in a kingdom.  If they could arrest and try the leader, then they would not stop in going after His followers.

Yet Peter and the others don’t get it.  He goes in for the kill trying to take the guys head off.  He only gets the ear, and what happened?  Jesus puts the mans ear back on His head.  “The revolution” won’t work if the leader keeps healing His enemies.

Notice also that Jesus confronts them with a relevant question:

(52)  Then Jesus said unto the chief priests, and captains of the temple, and the elders, which were come to him, Be ye come out, as against a thief, with swords and staves?

(53)  When I was daily with you in the temple, ye stretched forth no hands against me: but this is your hour, and the power of darkness.

To reword His reasoning, we can think of it like this:  “You’re treating me like a criminal?  If I had really committed an obvious crime, you could have arrested me in broad daylight with everyone there.  When I was in the temple you didn’t arrest me, but now you come out to arrest me with all manner of weapons- swords and spears?  I guess that is what you have to do.  You have to come to get me in secret, in the dark, because that is who is leading you- the power of darkness.  This is your time to do what you have come to do.”

This section is frought with disbelief.  There is the disbelief of Judas that is evidence in his betrayal of Jesus.  There is disbelief in the apostles, as they are trying to institute Jesus’ kingdom and defend Jesus in mans reasoning and philosophy and not according to what Jesus had taught them.  There is the disbelief of the religious leaders and their guards who were coming out in the midst of the dark to do the works of darkness.  In another parallel passage it is recorded that when Jesus spoke to this band of guards that had come to arrest him they had all fallen down.  They ignored this power and His healing of one of them, and still arrested Him for the crime of claiming to be God.  Talk about a lack of faith.

Application:

Disbelief is a root cause of spiritual failure.  When we fail to believe what God says and act on that, we are going to go in the wrong direction.

So, How do we see our faith grow?

So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Romans 10:17

Response:

Do you have a plan to get into the Word of God?

Do you have a habit of getting something out of the Word of God?

Do you have a habit of applying the Word of God to your life?  This is what you need.

Luke- Week 23- Day 1

(47)  And while he yet spake, behold a multitude, and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them, and drew near unto Jesus to kiss him. (48)  But Jesus said unto him, Judas, betrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss?

Luke 22:47-53

Explanation:

In this text we find Jesus being betrayed by Judas when the temple guard and those directing them came to arrest Jesus.  It must have been incredibly disappointing and difficult to be betrayed by Judas. I think it is interested that Jesus referred to Himself as “the Son of Man” in this moment.  Whenever Jesus referred to Himself as “the Son of Man” He was claiming to be the prophesied Messiah from Daniel 7.   This Messiah, the Son of man, was given dominion, glory, and a kingdom. 

(13)  I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. (14)  And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.

Daniel 7:13-14

Being an everlasting Kingdom that won’t be destroyed, this Son of man must be eternally existent.  This Son of Man is clearly God.

So, when Judas kisses Jesus to betray Him, Jesus asks Him this very scary question.  “Betrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss?”  Judas had surely seen Jesus heal the sick, walk on water, calm the sea, and even raise people from the dead.  He had heard about his transfiguration, and the voice of the Father booming from the sky.  He would have known that Jesus claimed to be God.  He certainly would have known about Daniel 7:13-14 that said that the Messiah would be a supernatural King with a glorious kingdom. 

It certainly was fool’s errand to betray someone with that kind of power and authority for 30 pieces of silver.  And Judas certainly had a fool leading him.  Earlier we were told that Satan had entered His heart.

(3)  Then entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve.

Luke 22:3

Satan really is the ultimate fool, having fully seen the identity of Jesus and the power of God, and in rebellion trying to fight against this power, and believing that You are somehow deserving of what is rightfully God’s.

Application:

Disbelief reigned here.  We may try to comfort ourselves with the idea that we have not seen, and so therefore it is harder for us to believe.  Yet, we have a surer Word of prophecy than even Judas did.  The fact of the resurrection is something we must all come to terms with, and we must decide to accept or reject.

We must also recognize the authority of Jesus.  He is the Son of God.  He was made flesh.  He did die and resurrect for our sins.  But be assured He is coming back and will rule and reign on an everlasting throne.  If He is the authority, then our job is to submit to His will and not fight Him.  The good news is His yoke is easy and His burden is light.

Response:

Are you recognizing Jesus’ authority today?

Luke- Week 22- Day 5

(39) And he came out, and went, as he was wont, to the mount of Olives; and his disciples also followed him. 

Luke 22:39

Explanation:

I want you to know something important.  This wasn’t the last time that Jesus was at the Mount of Olives.

When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?  (7)  And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.  (8)  But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.  (9)  And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.

Acts 1:6-11 

Then a couple of Angels showed up:

Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.  (12)  Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a sabbath day’s journey.

Acts 1:11-12 

Jesus ascended into heave from the mount of Olives.  Now one more verse and we will be done.  This is not the last time Jesus will be on the Mount of Olives.  Check out Zechariah 14:1-5.

Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee.  (2)  For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city.  (3)  Then shall the LORD go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle.  (4)  And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.  (5)  And ye shall flee to the valley of the mountains; for the valley of the mountains shall reach unto Azal: yea, ye shall flee, like as ye fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah: and the LORD my God shall come, and all the saints with thee.

Zechariah 14:1-5

Jesus Christ’s prayer was answered and He did accomplish God’s Will.  The message of the Gospel was manifested to His disciples, who made disciples, who made disciples.  And one day, because of the death, burial, resurrection, and great commission of Jesus, “the Lord my God shall come, and all the saints with thee”, “and His feet shall stand in that day upon the Mount of Olives”!

Application:

Prayer was Jesus’ priority.  Is it a priority in your life?  Are you ready for Him to come back?

Response:

Take some significant time to pray today!

Luke- Week 22- Day 4

(45)  And when he rose up from prayer, and was come to his disciples, he found them sleeping for sorrow,  (46)  And said unto them, Why sleep ye? rise and pray, lest ye enter into temptation.

Luke 22:45-46

Explanation:

In these last moments before Jesus was to be arrested and betrayed, He gave Himself to prayer.  He then gets up and comes to His disciples, finding them asleep.  Notice His question to them:

(46)  And said unto them, Why sleep ye? rise and pray, lest ye enter into temptation.

In this moment Jesus was telling them to prioritize prayer over sleep.  He was telling them to prioritize prayer.  Why?  He gives the reason when he said, “lest ye enter into temptation”. 

How wonderfully considerate is the Master. How big is his heart. So big that even during this night of bitter woe there is room in it for “others.” His heart goes out to them, for he fully realizes that the wrath of the Sanhedrin will not be appeased when he himself, the Leader, is caught. That wrath will be vented next upon those who have been following him.

In the previous verses He had told the disciples that they ought to sell their garments and buy a sword.  Why?  Because, as scripture foretold, He was about to be “named with the transgressors”.  He was going to be tried and arrested as a criminal.  He was about to be crucified between two thieves.  In fact, even when He is arrested, He asks the scribes, pharisees and temple guard this question:

Then Jesus said unto the chief priests, and captains of the temple, and the elders, which were come to him, Be ye come out, as against a thief, with swords and staves?  (53)  When I was daily with you in the temple, ye stretched forth no hands against me: but this is your hour, and the power of darkness.

Luke 22:52-53 

If they could get to Jesus and kill Him, they would certainly not stop with Him.  They would go after His disciples.  These disciples would be tempted to disown, deny, and desert Jesus, and prayer was an important part of what it takes for them to defeat this temptation.

And they did give in to this temptation.  There was a spiritual battle.  Jesus mentioned it in verse 53, when He said that those coming against Him were part of “the power of darkness”. 

The good news is there is redemption in the blood of Jesus.  These disciples would all end up being persecuted, and all but John giving their lives for the name of Christ as martyrs.

Application:

If we are going to be what God wants us to be we must realize that we are in a Spiritual battle.  In Ephesians 6:10-12, Paul says this:

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.  (11)  Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.  (12)  For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Ephesians 6:10-12 

We must never forget that we are in a spiritual battle.  Paul describes that here and tells the church at Ephesus to put on the armor of God to fight this Spiritual battle.  At the end of describing this armor He says this in verse 18-20:

Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;  (19)  And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel,  (20)  For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.

Ephesians 6:18-20 

If we are going to win against temptation in the midst of a spiritual battle, we must prioritize prayer!

Response:

When you look at last week, did you prioritize prayer?

– Did you have a place to pray?

– Did you have Jesus’ posture of prayer?

– Did you have Jesus’ passion in your prayer life?

– Did you have the spiritual power that comes when you prioritize prayer?

– Did you fall into temptation in part because of prayerlessness?

We fight for the Lord on our knees when we prioritize prayer!