Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Matthew 26:57-75


57 Those who had seized Jesus led Him away to Caiaphas, the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were gathered together. 58 But Peter followed him at a distance, right up as far as the courtyard of the high priest, and entered in, and sat down with the officers to see the outcome. 59 Now the chief priests and the whole Council kept trying to obtain false testimony against Jesus, so that they might put Him to death. 60 They did not find any, even though many false witnesses came forward. But later on two came forward, 61 and said, "This man stated, 'I am able to destroy the temple of God and to rebuild it in three days.'"

62 The high priest stood up and said to Him, "Do You not answer? What is it that these men are testifying against You?" 63 But Jesus kept silent. And the high priest said to Him, "I adjure You by the living God, that You tell us whether You are the Christ, the Son of God.'' 64 Jesus said to him, "You have said it yourself; nevertheless I tell you, hereafter , you will see THE SON OF MAN SITTING AT THE RIGHT HAND OF POWER, and COMING ON THE CLOUDS OF HEAVEN.'' 65 Then the high priest tore his robes and said, "He has blasphemed! What further need do we have of witnesses? Behold, you have now heard the blasphemy; 66 what do you think?'' They answered, "He deserves death!'' 67 Then they spat in His face and beat Him with their fists; and others slapped Him, 68 and said, "Prophesy to us, You Christ ; who is the one who hit You?''

69 Now Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard, and a servant-girl came to him and said, "You too were with Jesus the Galilean.'' 70 But he denied it before them all, saying, "I do not know what you are talking about.'' 71 When he had gone out to the gateway, another servant-girl saw him and said to those who were there, "This man was with Jesus of Nazareth.'' 72 And again he denied it with an oath, "I do not know the man.'' 73 A little later the bystanders came up and said to Peter, "Surely you too are one of them; for even the way you talk gives you away,.'' 74 Then he began to curse and swear, "I do not know the man!'' And immediately a rooster crowed. 75 And Peter remembered the word which Jesus had said, "Before a rooster crows, you will deny Me three times.'' And he went out and wept bitterly.

Everything turns real dark for Jesus and things are moving fast! He knew it was coming. He warned His disciples that it was coming! BUT NOW, just as Jesus warned Peter personally that he would deny Him, it all unfolds.

Have you ever known clearly what is the right thing to do, then you did the wrong thing? THEN, you remember what the Lord says or you are reminded what Jesus would do in that situation. You feel awful about your performance or lack of performance.

Have you ever experienced this kind of thing?

Well, if you do, then Jesus has a later word for you. It happened to Peter after the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. Jesus found Peter and his buddies fishing. When they came around the fire to sit down with Jesus, very little was being said because they were all so guilty for scattering, especially Peter! Jesus only wanted to know one thing, when speaking to Peter. Do you love me? In other words, no matter how bad your performance or lack thereof, Jesus is most concerned about your heart's response to Him. "Do you love me", he says. Well do you?

Matthew 26:47-56


47 While He was still speaking, behold, Judas, one of the twelve, came up accompanied , by a large crowd with swords and clubs, who came from the chief priests and elders of the people. 48 Now he who was betraying Him gave them a sign, saying, ``Whomever, I kiss, He is the one; seize Him.'' 49 Immediately Judas went to Jesus and said, ``Hail, Rabbi!'' and kissed Him. 50 And Jesus said to him, ``Friend, do what you have come for.'' Then they came and laid hands on Jesus and seized Him. 51 And behold, one of those who were with Jesus reached and drew out his sword, and struck the slave of the high priest and cut off his ear. 52 Then Jesus said to him, ``Put your sword back into its place; for all those who take up the sword shall perish by the sword. 53 ``Or do you think that I cannot appeal to My Father, and He will at once put at My disposal more than twelve legions of angels? 54``How then will the Scriptures be fulfilled, which say that it must happen this way?'' 55 At that time Jesus said to the crowds, ``Have you come out with swords and clubs to arrest Me as you would against a robber? Every day I used to sit in the temple teaching and you did not seize Me. 56 ``But all this has taken place to fulfill the Scriptures of the prophets.'' Then all the disciples left Him and fled.

Matthew simply tells us that one of the disciples drew a knife and, prepared to resist to the death and to sell his life dearly, wounded a servant of the High Priest. When John tells the same story (Jn 18:10), he says that the disciple was Peter, and the servant was Malchus. The reason why John names Peter, and Matthew does not, may simply be that John was writing much later, and that when Matthew was writing it was still not safe to name the disciple who had sprung so quickly to his Master's defense. This was a courageous move by Peter, not just an impulsive one. He was willing to take on the mob alone.

Here is a perfect illustration of Jesus' struggle of "not-my-will-but-yours" now applied with respect to Peter. Jesus' arrest and subsequent death are all part of God's will to deliver all mankind. Although Peter was good-intentioned, he was working for the wrong side.

This is why we must keep disciplining ourselves to wait on Jesus to lead out BEFORE we take over! I struggle with this every day! I get caught up in making things happen for God rather than waiting on Him to do those same things His way. What's interesting is that doing it my way always takes so much energy, stress with a little worry thrown in, all maybe not even producing the desired results. That's the natural way of doing life! His way usually is so much easier, seems so right and almost normal AND the results are beyond our wildest imaginations. That's the supernatural way of doing life!

I think this has a lot to do with Jesus' approach to everything. You see, Jesus calls His disciples into REST, not to be STRESSED. How's that working for you?