Alex Enabnit – Programming Coordinator
This week we continued our “Luke: The End” series with a three-part passage from Luke 22:35-53. In the first part, verses 35-38, we see Jesus and the disciples still in the upper room, where Jesus is giving them some of the last instructions they’ll hear from Him before He is crucified.
In this segment, Jesus tells the disciples that things will soon change, that the instructions he gave in Luke 9:3 no longer apply. From now on they need to be equipped and prepared, but most peculiarly Jesus tells them that they need a sword as well. When the disciples claim they have two swords, Jesus replies, “that’s enough!”
These verses, particularly the segment about the swords, have been problematic. Why would Jesus suggest needing a sword when the book of Acts (Luke’s sequel) doesn’t mention any sort of militant action from the church? Here are some interpretations: Jesus could have been preparing the disciples for the harsh realities, that times were getting tough and they needed to understand that. Or He could have been speaking metaphorically, saying that the disciples needed to be spiritually armed. He could have also wanted the disciples to be armed so that they could overcome the temptation to fight as Jesus surrenders in the garden (as we’ll see in a minute).
In part two, we see Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, in anguish about what is about to take place. He asks God if there is another way and an angel comes to strengthen Him. He returns to the disciples to find them sleeping, telling them to wake up and pray that they do not fall into temptation.
Part three of the message begins while part two is still ending. Judas enters with a mob, kisses Jesus to signal who to arrest, and a disciple cuts off a mob man’s ear! Jesus compassionately reattaches the ear. He then calls out the cowardice of the mob for staging the arrest when the least amount of people could be around to protest. Part three of the passage closes with Jesus surrendering to the mob saying, “This is your hour – when darkness reigns.”
What can we take from this? First, we can understand that courage attainable to all; we can experience courage once we place our fears in the hands of God. Secondly, we can take comfort that Christ understands darkness and He can walk alongside us as we experience darkness. Finally, we can understand that our greatest peace will come when we resolve to do God’s will. Just as Jesus experienced agony in the garden, He moved forward with resolution after He prayed that God’s will be done.
God steps in when we step out. Are you allowing God to work in your life?
Other verses and quotes from the message:
Ephesians 6:10-12; Luke 22:35-53; Luke 9:3; Isaiah 53:12b; Deuteronomy 33:29; 1 Corinthians 15:13-14; Psalm 69:1; Genesis 3:19; Matthew 4:11; Matthew 26:47; Matthew 26:48; John 18:10; Psalm 27:1-3; Hebrews 2:18; Hebrews 4:15; 2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 Peter 2:24
Your Love Never Fails – Bethel Music
Love Came Down – Bethel Music
Revelation Song – Jennie Lee Riddle
Mesa Communion Song
Let My Soul Sing – Casey Darnell