John 18:1-2 ESV
2 Samuel 15:13-30 (David and the Mount of Olives)
Matthew 26:36-39 ESV
Leviticus 17:11 ESV
Jeremiah 31:31-33 ESV
Luke 22:39-46 ESV
1 Peter 1:18-20 ESV
I can’t begin to imagine what that night would have been like for Jesus and His eleven disciples.
Jesus had already lost one disciple. Jesus knew Judas was about to betray Him.
Jesus would have been grieving the loss.
In John 18:1-2 we learn Jesus and his 11 disciples are about to leave the upper room. “When Jesus had spoken these words, he went out with his disciples across the brook Kidron, where there was a garden, which he and his disciples entered. Now Judas, who betrayed him, also knew the place, for Jesus often met there with his disciples.”
The Garden of Gethsemane was a place Jesus often went to when He needed spend time with His disciples. Jesus was well known by now and large crowds of people gathered when He was in the city.
The Garden of Gethsemane was an ancient garden filled with Olive Trees. We know that when King David left Jerusalem he passed through the Kidron Valley and the Mount of Olives (2 Samuel 15:13-30).
We know from Matthew 26:36-38, “Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to his disciples, “Sit here, while I go over there and pray.” And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.”
Jesus knew what was about to happen in the garden that night and He was filled with great sorrow. Peter, James and John had been the three disciples who were with Him on the Mount of Transfiguration. They were His inner circle. Jesus knew who they would become after He was gone. Jesus was preparing them. That night He asked them to watch and pray with Him.
They did not understand.
See, Jesus knew the sacrifice of the blood of the lamb was coming.
We read in Leviticus 17:11, “For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it for you on the altar to make atonement for your souls, for it is the blood that makes atonement by the life.”
In the Old Testament the blood sacrifice was spilt on the altar for the atonement of sin but the blood sacrifice was temporary and sacrifices were a yearly ritual. Israel had been told that one was coming that would atone for all our sins.
We know from Jeremiah 31:31-33, that the Prophet foretold, “Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah, not like the covenant that I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, my covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, declares the Lord. For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people.”
Now the hour had come.
Jesus was the one.
With the coming of Jesus the new covenant would be written on their hearts.
In Luke 22:39-46 we read, “And he came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him. And when he came to the place, he said to them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.” And he withdrew from them about a stone's throw, and knelt down and prayed, saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.” And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. And being in agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground. And when he rose from prayer, he came to the disciples and found them sleeping for sorrow, and he said to them, “Why are you sleeping? Rise and pray that you may not enter into temptation.”
Jesus was so sorrowful that an Angel appeared from heaven to strengthen Him.
He suffered so must agony that His sweat became like drops of blood.
Then when Jesus returned to Peter, James, and John…His inner circle support group He found them sleeping. We notice in the account from the Gospel of Luke that Jesus found them sleeping from sorrow. On some level they must have had a sense that Jesus was hurting for some unknown reason.
Even then Jesus wasn’t concerned for Himself. He was concerned that they were not prepared for what was about to happen. He knew they were hurting and they didn’t understand why.
Jesus loved them and He forgave them for falling asleep.
Jesus knew His disciples would scatter.
He knew Peter would betray Him.
He was concerned about them!
In the Garden of Gethsemane Jesus knew this was His HOUR.
It’s interesting that much later the same Peter who fell asleep in the Garden that night and betrayed Jesus three times after the arrest, later wrote in I Peter 1:18-20, “Knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot. He was foreknown before the foundation of the world but was made manifest in the last times for the sake of you.”
Peter did understand after the Cross, the Resurrection, the Ascention, and the Coming of the Holy Spirit to earth. Peter did know that Jesus was with God when the foundation of the world was laid.
In the end Peter knew Jesus died so we might live.
Today’s Spiritual Practice is: Sacrifice
Consider how Jesus died so we might live.
In God, Deborah