Luke22: 47-51

Written by kathleen on Aug 31, 2014 in - No Comments

Luke 22:47-51

Wounds from a friend

Jesus’ arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane is like a whirlpool full of all kinds of contrasting emotions and values — loyalty and betrayal, courage and cowardice, power and weakness, determination and impulse, wounding and healing, conspiracy and committed love. They all are around this single event and provide unique insights to a disciple.

Jesus, who has spent hours in prayer, has just been speaking to his disciples, about preparing for the hour of temptation: But now it is too late for them to pray and prepare. The hour of his crisis — and theirs — has arrived.

The Jerusalem informant, “Judas, one of the Twelve” betrays Jesus for 30 pieces of silver

47 While he was still speaking a crowd came up, and the man who was called Judas, one of the Twelve, was leading them. He approached Jesus to kiss him 48 but Jesus asked him, “Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?”

Judas is not the leader in the sense of being in charge, but he is acting as a guide, you can hear him coming for some time before he arrives and therefore is going in front of the soldiers.

Judas drawing close, the sleepy disciples are now scrambling to their feet, totally unprepared

But Jesus, who has spent the evening preparing by prayer, is composed as Judas moves toward him to specifically identify Him for the sake of those arresting Jesus; he addresses Jesus as “Rabbi” — which means “great one” — as he kisses him.

The kiss is the height of hypocrisy, an act of betrayal

Prov 27:6 Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.

Ps 41:9 Even my close friend, whom I trusted, he who shared my bread, has lifted up his heel against me.

This event also fulfils prophesy concerning the betrayal of Judas Iscariot. Jesus, when he spoke of one of his disciples betraying him was making reference to this as a prophecy.

Judas didn’t have a clue about Jesus

 49 When Jesus’ followers saw what was going to happen, they said, “Lord, should we strike with our swords?” 50 And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear.

By now the disciples are awake, but are not thinking very clearly. They call out, asking Jesus whether they should defend him with their swords, but don’t wait for an answer before they begin swinging their blades

John 18:10 identifies this unnamed swordsman as Peter and the victim is Malchus;  He was the chief priest’s official representative at the arrest, and therefore was close by Judas, charged with making sure that Jesus was taken.

But Peter is not only spiritually dull about Jesus’ destiny that is being worked out in accordance with scripture; he is also dull about which of the forces in the garden is in control.

He sees an armed force of several hundred men appear out of the darkness, but they are not the overwhelming force. Matthew reports Jesus’ words: “Do you think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels? But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled that say it must happen in this way?” (Matthew 26:53-54).

Twelve legions comprise more than 12,000 troops — of angels — against a couple hundred temple guards. No contest. Jesus is clearly spiritually prepared and in charge, therefore He is not taken against his will. He allows himself to be arrested in order to carry out the Father’s will.

So often we see our problems looming so large that we can’t see how much greater are God’s resources to meet our need.

2 Kings 6:8-23 Now the king of Aram was at war with Israel. After conferring with his officers, he said, “I will set up my camp in such and such a place.”

9 The man of God sent word to the king of Israel: “Beware of passing that place, because the Arameans are going down there.” 10 So the king of Israel checked on the place indicated by the man of God. Time and again Elisha warned the king, so that he was on his guard in such places.

11 This enraged the king of Aram. He summoned his officers and demanded of them, “Will you not tell me which of us is on the side of the king of Israel?”

12 “None of us, my lord the king,” said one of his officers, “but Elisha, the prophet who is in Israel, tells the king of Israel the very words you speak in your bedroom.”

13 “Go, find out where he is,” the king ordered, “so I can send men and capture him.” The report came back: “He is in Dothan.” 14 Then he sent horses and chariots and a strong force there. They went by night and surrounded the city.

15 When the servant of the man of God got up and went out early the next morning, an army with horses and chariots had surrounded the city. “Oh, my lord, what shall we do?” the servant asked.

16 “Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.”

17 And Elisha prayed, “O LORD, open his eyes so he may see.” Then the LORD opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.

18 As the enemy came down toward him, Elisha prayed to the LORD, “Strike these people with blindness.” So he struck them with blindness, as Elisha had asked.

19 Elisha told them, “This is not the road and this is not the city. Follow me, and I will lead you to the man you are looking for.” And he led them to Samaria.

20 After they entered the city, Elisha said, “LORD, open the eyes of these men so they can see.” Then the LORD opened their eyes and they looked, and there they were, inside Samaria.

21 When the king of Israel saw them, he asked Elisha, “Shall I kill them, my father? Shall I kill them?”

22 “Do not kill them,” he answered. “Would you kill men you have captured with your own sword or bow? Set food and water before them so that they may eat and drink and then go back to their master.” 23 So he prepared a great feast for them, and after they had finished eating and drinking, he sent them away, and they returned to their master. So the bands from Aram stopped raiding Israel’s territory.

 51 But Jesus answered, “No more of this!” And he touched the man’s ear and healed him.

This is a miracle Jesus does most often today and that is to heal the wounds inflicted by overzealous over confident disciples.

This type of injury is usually inflicted by a person who has fallen away from regular times in the Bible, sleeping instead of praying, generally not in fellowship with Jesus; so they try to make up their slackness and feelings of guilt by being over zealous and reacting in the flesh!

Many times Christians who are thinking they are standing up for truth and defending the Lord by unsheathing the two-edged sword of the Word to chop off the ears of those around them have great courage!

Peter’s courage was great being outnumbered six hundred to one, but his zeal was misdirected.                  Peter Fought the Wrong Enemy!

When Peter drew his sword, he didn’t take on any of the six hundred armed soldiers. No, he went for one of the servants who was most likely unarmed and defenseless. In his zeal to protect the Lord, Peter went after perhaps the weakest person in the place.

You and I often do the same thing: We fight the wrong enemy. The Bible tells us we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers and spiritual wickedness in high places (Ephesians 6:12). Therefore, any time I am wrestling or fighting a person, I am fighting the wrong enemy just as was Peter.

If you’re fighting your husband, boss, teacher, or neighbor, you’re fighting the wrong battle. Our attack is to be leveled not against people, but against Satan and his demonic influence through prayer, for therein lies the true battle.

Peter Used the Wrong Weapon Peter used a literal sword—but it is only a spiritual weapon that can pull down the high towers of the enemy that have taken hold of people.             The sword we are to use is not a sword that cuts physically. Rather, it is the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.

2 Cor 10:4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.

 Heb 4:12 For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

Because the Word is powerful, sharper than any two-edged sword, we must be careful not to use it carelessly or incorrectly.

All too often, Christians unsheathe their Bibles and start chopping on people mercilessly by using a Scripture or a principle that’s usually out of context and it leaves people bloodied, battered, and beaten.

Just because a person is quoting Scripture does not mean it is applicable in every situation. If someone is giving you a misguided earful, it’s no different than what Peter did when he sliced off Malchus’ ear.

James gives us a very simple test to know whether any given word is really from the Lord.…

James 3:17  But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.

Is what’s being shared with you pure, peaceable, and without hassle and hypocrisy? Or does it cause confusion, strife, and tension? Before you unsheathe your sword or allow someone to unsheathe theirs, be sure it’s done with this text in mind.           Peter Harbored the Wrong Attitude

Phil 2:5 Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:

Many times, we have a tendency to want to fight back when in reality Jesus would have us mellow out.

Matt 11:29-30 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

David was fleeing from his son Absalom who had launched a rebellion against him. On his way out of Jerusalem this nobody named Shimei threw rocks and dirt at him saying “You’re a bloody man, David. That’s why you’re being sent away from Jerusalem. That’s why you’ve lost your kingdom.”

Hearing this, Abishai, one of David’s men said, “Let me lop off that dead dog’s head.” But David would not allow it saying “The Lord has allowed him to say these words to me,” David recognized Shimei was part of the process through which the Lord was doing a work of humility within him.

How many times have we said, “This person must be corrected,” or, “That person must be straightened out” Perhaps—but there will come a time when that will happen righteously, perfectly, and completely. Until then, keep your sword at your side.

Peter Fought for the Wrong Reason The reason Peter drew his sword was to protect the Lord from the six hundred soldiers. Do you think the Lord needs protecting? Has He called you to protect Him? Has He called you to straighten out a wrong situation in your own energy?

2 Tim 2:23-24 Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. 24 And the Lord’s servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful.

“What they did is wrong,” “Therefore, I must stand up for the Lord.” Maybe—but make sure He is directing you.

Perhaps Peter was trying to demonstrate his sincerity, his willingness to take a stand for Jesus.

Maybe he was thinking, You told me I would deny You, Lord. Well, watch this.…

Sometimes our ego gets involved and we want to show how spiritual we are by nailing this person or that situation.

Yet one of the greatest things about being a Christian is the fact that the Lord will judge leaving us the opportunity to simply love.

If the Lord chooses to use you as an instrument of intervention or correction, it won’t be as a sword flying indiscriminately, but as a skillful surgeon working exactingly and lovingly.

Sometimes the hardest thing to do in ministry is to be gentle with people who “oppose” or continue to be at odds with the Bible Yet Paul says we must be gentle and patient with all men—even those who seem to be our enemies. We are to love, forgive, and encourage people. Yes, there are times of correction teaching rebuking and training—but only if surrounded by love.

If you are one who blindly or foolishly opposes the Bible my prayer is that you will see the vanity, and the foolishness of doing so.

May you choose, instead, to live according to the principles of the Bible

In short, may you grow strong in the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.