In this Chapter:
1-11: Jesus is Betrayed and Arrested
12-14: Annas Questions Jesus
15-18: Peter’s First Denial
19-24: The High Priest Questions Jesus
25-27: Peter’s Second and Third Denial
28-40: Jesus’ Trial Before Pilate
Jesus Got Took:
For a little while now, Jesus has been preparing His disciples for the moment when He would finally be put to death on the cross, paying the price for the sins of the world. This chapter begins this process.
First, Jesus is betrayed by one of His followers. Unfortunately, this dude, Judas, allowed himself to be tempted by Satan to betray Jesus. Now, we’re not really certain as to whether Judas was just going through the motions of following Jesus the whole time and never actually placed his faith in Jesus or if he was just tempted and failed. We do know he was very remorseful after he had betrayed Jesus. But Satan definitely got a hold of him and caused him to hand Jesus over to His eventual murderers.
Jesus is brought to one of the head-honchos of a major religious group and then to one of the Roman officials. After questioning Jesus, the religious leaders wanted to sentence Him to death, because He claimed to be God. This was a huuuuuge no-no according to their religious law. Little did they know that they were all setting out to kill the God whom they claimed to love, serve, and follow. Unfortunately, their man-made religion and customs and rules kept them blind to the truth.
Also, during this time, Peter, one of Jesus’s disciples, is seen denying any type of connection with Jesus. Fear overcame Peter after he saw Jesus being arrested and sentenced to death. He did not want the same thing to happen to him so He bailed, denying that he was ever one of Jesus’s disciples.
Satan loves to make Jesus’s Followers deny their relationship with Him. Satan will do whatever it takes to cause us to deny Christ. When the pressure hits—maybe the loss of a friend, a sponsor, or a career—what will your decision be? Deny you know Jesus, or stand firm for Him?
Throughout all of this pressure, Jesus demonstrates some amazing behavior:
1) Jesus predicted in advance what was about to take place: His arrest, trials, sentencing, and ultimately His crucifixion on the cross (John 18:4).
2) Jesus knew that it was God’s will for all these things to occur. He knew that by going to the cross, He would bear God’s wrath intended for all sinful men, and that through this He would make salvation available to all who believe.
3) Jesus remained totally obedient to what God had planned, even though it was going to bring nearly unbearable levels of suffering and eventually His death.
Let’s Learn This:
Jesus was gnarly! What a wonderful Savior we have to endure all of this for us! Jesus, in everything He did, showed that doing God’s will was His priority above everything else. He was obedient in all things despite the outcome, and He did all of this to show His love for us.
What can WE learn from this?
If you have yet to place your faith in Jesus, realize that He endured all of these things, even death on a cross, to make salvation possible for YOU. It is literally as easy as this: Believe that Jesus paid the price for your sins, and your sins will be forgiven.
If you are a believer in Christ already, let Jesus be your example. He was obedient to God in all things, no matter the cost. The choice is yours; live for yourself and watch your years pass away searching for purpose and maybe even end up denying Christ like Peter, or choose today to live for God and find ultimate purpose and satisfaction that will last for eternity.