John 18- D-Day and 4 Reactions
Finally the day came, Jesus new what was next. He had prepared all His existence for this day. He was to begin to feel something that no one in the Godhead (God the Father, God Jesus, God the Holy Spirit) has ever felt before. He was going to feel more pain than anyone in the entire universe will ever feel. In the Garden of Gethsemane Jesus’ trial began. He began to be separated from His Father. Can you fathom this idea? Jesus who has always existed in union with the rest of the Trinity now for the first time was being separated from them. A loving Being began to be separate from Him who is Love. Jesus began to feel the wrath of God the second death for humanity. Can you imagine what Jesus felt from being separated from God? In the others Gospel they shows that at this moment Jesus began to sweat blood. How much pain, stress, and anxiety did he feel? Was He ready? Did He have to do it? No, verse 6 say that when the mob came to get Him. He told them that He was the person they were looking for and immediately they fall backwards straight to the ground. Why? Jesus is God, what could they do to Him unless He would let them? This shows His divinity, Jesus knew that there was no other way for you and me and the world to be saved. So He willingly went through this, He didn’t have to, but He did because He loves us. Try to imagine how much a Loving God went through just for me and You.
Judas Betrays Jesus
18 When Jesus had spoken these words, He went forth with His disciples over the [a]ravine of the Kidron, where there was a garden, in which He entered [b]with His disciples. 2 Now Judas also, who was [c]betraying Him, knew the place, for Jesus had often met there with His disciples. 3 Judas then, having received the Roman [d]cohort and officers from the chief priests and the Pharisees, *came there with lanterns and torches and weapons. 4 So Jesus, knowing all the things that were coming upon Him, went forth and *said to them, “Whom do you seek?” 5 They answered Him, “Jesus the Nazarene.” He *said to them, “I am He.” And Judas also, who was betraying Him, was standing with them. 6 So when He said to them, “I am He,” they drew back and fell to the ground. 7 Therefore He again asked them, “Whom do you seek?” And they said, “Jesus the Nazarene.” 8 Jesus answered, “I told you that I am He; so if you seek Me, let these go their way,” 9 to fulfill the word which He spoke, “Of those whom You have given Me I lost not one.” 10 Simon Peter then, having a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s slave, and cut off his right ear; and the slave’s name was Malchus. 11 So Jesus said to Peter, “Put the sword into the sheath; the cup which the Father has given Me, shall I not drink it?”
Jesus before the Priests
12 So the Roman [e]cohort and the [f]commander and the officers of the Jews, arrested Jesus and bound Him, 13 and led Him to Annas first; for he was father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was high priest that year. 14 Now Caiaphas was the one who had advised the Jews that it was expedient for one man to die on behalf of the people.
15 Simon Peter was following Jesus, and so was another disciple. Now that disciple was known to the high priest, and entered with Jesus into the court of the high priest, 16 but Peter was standing at the door outside. So the other disciple, who was known to the high priest, went out and spoke to the doorkeeper, and brought Peter in. 17 Then the slave-girl who kept the door *said to Peter, “You are not also one of this man’s disciples, are you?” He *said, “I am not.” 18 Now the slaves and the officers were standing there, having made a charcoal fire, for it was cold and they were warming themselves; and Peter was also with them, standing and warming himself.
19 The high priest then questioned Jesus about His disciples, and about His teaching. 20 Jesus answered him, “I have spoken openly to the world; I always taught in [g]synagogues and in the temple, where all the Jews come together; and I spoke nothing in secret. 21 Why do you question Me? Question those who have heard what I spoke to them; they know what I said.” 22 When He had said this, one of the officers standing nearby struck Jesus, saying, “Is that the way You answer the high priest?” 23 Jesus answered him, “If I have spoken wrongly, testify of the wrong; but if rightly, why do you strike Me?” 24 So Annas sent Him bound to Caiaphas the high priest.
Peter’s Denial of Jesus
25 Now Simon Peter was standing and warming himself. So they said to him, “You are not also one of His disciples, are you?” He denied it, and said, “I am not.” 26 One of the slaves of the high priest, being a relative of the one whose ear Peter cut off, *said, “Did I not see you in the garden with Him?” 27 Peter then denied it again, and immediately a rooster crowed.
Jesus before Pilate
28 Then they *led Jesus from Caiaphas into the [h]Praetorium, and it was early; and they themselves did not enter into the [i]Praetorium so that they would not be defiled, but might eat the Passover. 29 Therefore Pilate went out to them and *said, “What accusation do you bring against this Man?” 30 They answered and said to him, “If this Man were not an evildoer, we would not have delivered Him to you.” 31 So Pilate said to them, “Take Him yourselves, and judge Him according to your law.” The Jews said to him, “We are not permitted to put anyone to death,” 32 to fulfill the word of Jesus which He spoke, signifying by what kind of death He was about to die.
33 Therefore Pilate entered again into the Praetorium, and summoned Jesus and said to Him, “Are You the King of the Jews?” 34 Jesus answered, “Are you saying this [j]on your own initiative, or did others tell you about Me?” 35 Pilate answered, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests delivered You to me; what have You done?” 36 Jesus answered, “My kingdom [k]is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, then My servants would be fighting so that I would not be handed over to the Jews; but as it is, My kingdom is not [l]of this realm.” 37 Therefore Pilate said to Him, “So You are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say correctly that I am a king. For this I have been born, and for this I have come into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.” 38 Pilate *said to Him, “What is truth?”
And when he had said this, he went out again to the Jews and *said to them, “I find no guilt in Him. 39 But you have a custom that I release someone [m]for you at the Passover; do you wish then that I release [n]for you the King of the Jews?” 40 So they cried out again, saying, “Not this Man, but Barabbas.” Now Barabbas was a robber.
On the most important day of Jesus’ Earthly Ministry lets take a look on how 4 different people responded to it.
Judas: A man that was accepted to Jesus inner group. Who learned from God. Sold Him for a few pieces of money. He knew exactly were He was. He even knew what Jesus looked like in the night. Judas who had his very own plan for Jesus rejected the plan that Jesus had for him. Look at how far this man, who had rejected God’s plan, went. Even as far as to sell the King of kings. How far can we go if we reject God’s plan for us?
Peter: Another of Jesus’ disciples who had his own ideas for Jesus. When Peter saw his plans crumbling he took matters in his own hands. He fought back in his own strength and stroke Malchus in the ear to be quickly rebuked by Jesus again. Peter who was the bravest to fight was the biggest coward when given the chance to stand up for Jesus. He was asked three times and three times he denied Jesus. He even cursed, said bad words, the third time. When things are not going our way are we going to do what we think is best? When God need us to stand up for Him are we going to deny Him?
Caiaphas: The man who was the High Priest, who was supposed to be the representative of God in this world. The person who should have been the leader of God’s people, the one who was suppose to teach righteousness, condemn to death Him who is the world’s Righteousness. Him who accused Jesus of blaspheme thought that He could judge the Son of God. His very own Creator. What irony, did you catch verse 28, it was early in the morning, Why? He tried Jesus in the night, which it was illegal to have any trials at night. They coerced justice to do something that was unjust and illegal. What irony. Have you ever been unjust to God? Or condemn Him because we don’t understand what is going on?
Pilate: A roman ruler, a keeper of peace, a man with power. Found nothing wrong with Jesus. For every question he had Jesus had an answer that he was not prepared for. He was not in control but Jesus was. His attention was captivated for a moment, He stood before Jesus who looked the opposite of Him. But something about Jesus was not normal. Looking into his Maker eyes, Pilates ask “What is truth?” No one is more qualified than Jesus to answer that question. But Pilate doesn’t give God a chance to answer his question, He walks away. Have we denied God a chance? Have we stared at Truth and walked away?
Jesus did not have to die but He chose to die for men like Judas, Peter, Caiphas, and Pilate. He loved them as much as He loves us. God wanted each of them to accept His plan of salvation. Some of us may see things that we have in common with them. God knew what they would do and what we are going to do. But Jesus knows that the only way that He could save us is for Him to go through what He did.
Barabbas was supposed to die that day. His cross was ready for him to be crucified on. He was a criminal, a murderer, a thief. A sinner. Jesus took his place and allowed him to have a second chance in life. Jesus took his cross. Barabbas is us. Jesus took our place on the cross so that we may have a second chance. So that we may not die the second death. What is your reaction? I know mine, I will pick up my cross and follow Jesus. AMEN!!!
Any comments, questions, or prayer request?
Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.