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Jesus is in the garden of Gethsemane where He was crushed as in an olive press by the terrors of His approaching suffering for the oil of His Holy Spirit that subjects one’s own will to the will of the Father, even unto death.  It was this oil of His Spirit that was poured out through His sacrifice on the cross to cleanse us from our sins by the washing of regeneration as we likewise subject our will to the will of the Father and die to sin, and it is in this way that we are renewed by the Holy Spirit for a true salvation unto eternal life.  Rather than preparing Himself physically with rest or last-minute nourishment, He prepared Himself spiritually by praying until the moment when Judas arrived with a mob from the Jewish leaders to arrest Him.  Now, having been seized after Judas identified Him with a greeting and a kiss, He as the Good Shepherd asked that since He was the one they were seeking they would let His followers go free, as one last type of the great salvation He was about to accomplish.

Recall that in addition to the disciples’ spiritual stupor that couldn’t comprehend what Jesus had been foretelling was about to happen, after the day’s preparations for the Passover feast and journey from the upper room across the Kidron Valley to the Mount of Olives, they couldn’t keep awake while attempting to keep watch with Jesus, and were no doubt groggy and slow to perceive what was happening.  But as the unfolding events shook them to their senses and it finally donned on them what was taking place, what did they say?  See Luk 22:49.  What does the fact that they asked before springing into action indicate about Jesus being clearly in charge of their lives, and how they had become accustomed to seek His will and direction in all things before acting?  As His present day disciples, is Jesus clearly in charge of our lives, and are we also accustomed to seek His will and direction in all matters even of seemingly little importance, so that when confronted with matters of grave importance we pause to seek His will rather than simply reacting according to our flesh?

Although at least some of His disciples had the presence of mind to inquire of the Lord what they should do, as the situation no doubt appeared desperate, what did one of the disciples do, supposing time was of the essence, before receiving a reply from Jesus?  See Luk 22:50; cf. Mat 26:51.  From Jesus’ response in Mat 26:52-54, what ought we to learn about the danger of acting rashly, even in situations where we are tempted to respond quickly, without first receiving the Lord’s direction?  Cf. Pro 19:2.  Who does John identify as the disciple who sprang into action without first hearing from Jesus?  See Joh 18:10.  In what way did Peter’s bravado and boasting earlier that evening that He would never fall away even if he had to die with Jesus also predispose him to act rashly?  In what way did that also contribute to His later denial of Jesus?  See Joh 18:26-27.  What warning should this give us about filling our minds with the bluster of the world that incites such actions?  What does it also teach us about the way that pride ensnares us to act in ways that are contrary to the Lord’s will and our own best interests?

Considering that Peter cut off the ear of the man he smote with the sword, what should we understand about the lethal intent with which he attacked?  Observe that none of the Synoptic gospels that were written prior to 56 a.d. identify Peter as the one who smote off the ear of the man (Mat 26:51, Mar 14:47, Luk 22:50); why does that make sense if Peter was still alive when they wrote, and how does this evidence argue against the late date of the gospels that some assert to cast doubt upon their trustworthiness?  Similarly, what does the fact that John identified Peter as the aggressor indicate about Peter’s death prior to John’s writing?

What does Luke, the beloved physician, alone record that Jesus did to prevent an escalation in the hostilities that had just broken out?  See Luk 22:51.  In what way would His intervention have protected the sheep for which He was the Shepherd?  What does this teach us about the way the Lord protects us as His sheep by preventing us from warring after the manner of the world?  See Luk 6:27-35; cf. Mat 26:52.  In what way would His healing the man have been a witness to those arresting Him of the power He had to oppose them, which He refrained from using?  In what way ought it to have convicted those who were sent to arrest Him as a malefactor of His actual beneficence, and their own malevolence?  Cf. Pro 25:21-22.  Why didn’t it?  See Joh 12:40; cf. Joh 3:19.

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