Picture what it must have been like for Jesus’s disciples.
Standing in the Garden of Gethsemane, watching Judas Iscariot lead an entire detachment of soldiers towards them.
The noise of many feet, the sound of the armor, and the cold dread which must have clung to the hearts of these men, who loved Jesus so much.
Then, all eyes focused on Jesus, as he walked towards this dangerous crowd.
Jesus therefore, knowing all things that would come upon Him, went forward and said to them, “Whom are you seeking?”
John 18:4 NKJV
Adrenaline had to be coursing through the veins of every man, for all present, save one, seemed to anticipate a fight.
They answered Him, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus said to them, “I am He.” And Judas, who betrayed Him, also stood with them. Now when He said to them, “I am He,” they drew back and fell to the ground.
John 18:5-6 NKJV
Can you hear the sound of these men falling to the ground and then quickly, awkwardly standing again?
Can you imagine the wonder at what the disciples just witnessed, they had seen a great many miracles, but never had such a circumstance occurred before.
Every nerve must have been tingling, what could possibly be coming next.
Then He asked them again, “Whom are you seeking?” And they said, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus answered, “I have told you that I am He. Therefore, if you seek Me, let these go their way,” that the saying might be fulfilled which He spoke, “Of those whom You gave Me I have lost none.”
John 18:7-9 NKJV
Was the handle of Peter’s sword already within his grip as he, with astonishment, listened to the words of Jesus?
Obviously, surrender wasn’t what Peter had expected, nor was he willing to quietly move aside and let this mob take his Lord.
Then Simon Peter, having a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus.
John 18:10 NKJV
To completely clarify that He was doing the will of His Father, Jesus spoke.
But Jesus said to him, “Put your sword in its place, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword. Or do you think that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He will provide Me with more than twelve legions of angels? How then could the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must happen thus?”
Matthew 26:52-54 NKJV
God loves us so much that He didn’t want any to perish, and this was the way of salvation.
Jesus surrendered to torture and death that He might have victory over sin and eternal death.
“A sinless Man in an appointed garden was about to do battle with Satan’s representative (Luke 22:3). The first time this happened, the sinless man failed. The Second Adam would not fail.” David Guzik
Jesus also knew that this time the cunning lies of the enemy would lead to His death, but it would turn the tables on Satan, making it possible to free mankind from the sin Satan tricked us into at the beginning.
Although, the disciples couldn’t grasp these truths at the moment in the garden, they understood completely when Jesus rose from the dead and the Holy Spirit was given.
Acts 2:14 KJV — But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words:
Acts 2:22-24 KJV Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know: :23 Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain: 24 Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.
Acts 2:36 KJV — Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.
Acts 2:37 KJV — Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
Acts 2:38 KJV — Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
The truth of Jesus’s surrender and sacrifice is as life changing today as it was more than two thousand years ago.
It is the single most important choice anyone can ever make.
For those who chose to surrender themselves to Jesus, it is a continual decision, made daily to live in surrender to our Lord, for He Himself said we are to take up our cross and follow Him.
Luke 9:23 KJV — And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for Your love and encouragement. Thank You for teaching us through Your sacrifice how to live in surrender to You. Lord, I love that it wasn’t a circumstance of You having no choice, You could have easily defeated ten times the number of people who came against You. Instead, it was Your gift to us. Your blood cleanses us from sin and Your sacrifice closed the gap between us and eternal life with You in Heaven. Thank You! I simply can’t put into words the depth of my gratitude for Your amazing sacrifice. Thank You, Jesus. Thank You. Amen.