Lent 2015, Led to the Cross: Not My Will, But Yours Be Done

This is the Lent 2015 series. We’re reading through Luke, from Jesus conquering temptation in the desert to the Passion, His crucifixion and resurrection.

Luke 22

Jesus Prays at the Mount of Olives (Luke 22:39-46)

After The Last Supper Jesus went to the Mount of Olives to pray. The Mount of Olives is on the east side of Jerusalem. Jesus visited the Mount of Olives at least three times during the Holy Week: when He arrived in Jerusalem riding the donkey on Palm Sunday (Luke 19:29-30); when He spoke about the end of times (Luke 21:5); and now following The Last Supper. Jesus went to the Mount of Olives each time He visited Lazarus, Mary, and Martha. The three lived in Bethany, a town above the Mount of Olives. (Adapted from Jesus: The Greatest Life of All, by Charles Swindoll).

Jesus walked to the garden with 11 of His disciples following behind; Judas had already left. He told his apostles to pray that “they would not fall into temptation” and He went to a private place to pray.

Jesus prayed Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him. And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.” (Luke 22:42)

Jesus must have been in agony- knowing what was ahead, knowing that those He loved would betray Him, knowing the suffering that He would endure on the Cross.

Jesus was not delivered from his sufferings, yet he was strengthened and supported under them, and that was equivalent. If God proportion the shoulders to the burden, we shall have no reason to complain, whatever he is pleased to lay upon us. David owns this a sufficient answer to his prayer, in the day of trouble, that God strengthened him with strength in his soul, and so does the son of David, Psalm 138:3: “As soon as I pray, you answer me; you encourage me by giving me strength“. (Adapted from Matthew Henry)

God sent an angel to strengthen Jesus. The angels ministered to the Lord Jesus in his sufferings. He could have had legions of them to rescue him; this one could have done it, could have chased and conquered the whole band of men that came to take him; but he made use of his ministration only to strengthen him; and the very visit which this angel made him now in his grief, when his enemies were awake and his friends asleep, was such a seasonable token of the divine favour as would be a very great strengthening to him. Yet this was not all: he probably said something to him to strengthen him; put him in mind that his sufferings were in order to his Father’s glory, to his own glory, and to the salvation of those that were given him, represented to him the joy set before him, the seed he should see; with these and the like suggestions he encouraged him to go on cheerfully; and what is comforting is strengthening. Perhaps he did something to strengthen him, wiped away his sweat and tears, perhaps ministered some cordial to him, as after his temptation, or, it may be, took him by the arm, and helped him off the ground, or bore him up when he was ready to faint away; and in these services of the angel the Holy Spirit was enischyon autonputting strength into him; for so the word signifies. (Adapted from Matthew Henry)

When he rose from prayer and went back to the disciples, he found them asleep, exhausted from sorrow.  “Why are you sleeping?” he asked them. “Get up and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. (Luke 22:45)

Jesus Arrested (Luke 22:47-53)

While he was still speaking a crowd came up, and the man who was called Judas, one of the Twelve, was leading them. He approached Jesus to kiss him, but Jesus asked him, “Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?”  (Luke 22:47)

Judas led the enemies, members of the Sanhedrin who wanted to kill Jesus, right to Him- and then greeting Jesus with a kiss. If you ever think that Jesus can’t relate to your experiences of betrayal, loss, or disappointment- or that your burdens might be too big for salvation, you need only read about Judas. Jesus loved Judas, He chose Judas, He taught Judas, and He was turned over to His enemies by Judas.

The disciples saw what was about to happen and, in an effort to defend Jesus, cut off the ear of one of the guards. Jesus stopped them, healed the man, and turned to His enemies. “Then Jesus said to the chief priests, the officers of the temple guard, and the elders, who had come for him, “Am I leading a rebellion, that you have come with swords and clubs?  Every day I was with you in the temple courts, and you did not lay a hand on me. But this is your hour—when darkness reigns.” (Luke 22:52-53)

Guards Mock Jesus (Luke 22:63-65)

Peter betrayed Jesus, as He predicted, three times after His arrest.

The men who were guarding Jesus began mocking and beating him.  They blindfolded him and demanded, “Prophesy! Who hit you?”  And they said many other insulting things to him. (Luke 22:63-65)

Jesus before Pilate and Herod (Luke 22:66-71)

 At daybreak the council of the elders of the people, both the chief priests and the teachers of the law, met together, and Jesus was led before them.  “If you are the Messiah,” they said, “tell us.”

Jesus answered, “If I tell you, you will not believe me,  and if I asked you, you would not answer. But from now on, the Son of Man will be seated at the right hand of the mighty God.”

 They all asked, “Are you then the Son of God?”

He replied, “You say that I am.”

Then they said, “Why do we need any more testimony? We have heard it from his own lips.”

Have you accepted His gift of salvation? Have you RSVP’d to His invitation?

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—  not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. (Ephesians 2:8-10)

A major passage for understanding God’s grace, i.e., His kindness, unmerited favor and forgiving love. you have been saved. “Saved” has a wide range of meanings. It includes salvation from God’s wrath, which we all had incurred by our sinfulness. The tense of the verb (also in v. 5) suggests a completed action with emphasis on its present effect. through faith. See Romans 3:21-31  which establishes the necessity of faith in Christ as the only means of being made right with God. not from yourselves. No human effort can contribute to our salvation; it is the gracious gift of God. (The NIV 365-Day Devotional)

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