Good evening everyone.
I would like us to contemplate the part of the scripture where Jesus prays to His Father on the night that He was betrayed.
So firstly, what do you deduce to be the state of mind of Jesus as He prays that night? And, secondly, what do you deduce regarding the disciples who could not stay awake!
Now regarding us as disciples, is it possible that we can be in one of two positions regarding praying to God.
Could it be that we are either awake, praying for insight and getting answers or...
Alternately we can be asleep on the job, although genuinely called by God!
So, let's think of these questions in order.
1. Do we think Jesus feared for His life? It's a question many ask, even believers!
2. Do we think that Jesus thought His road was too hard to take?
3. Did Jesus come back to the disciples looking for comfort and support?
4. When Jesus said, “Could you not wait one hour?”, was He frustrated?
5. When Judas came to betray Him, was He angered that friends could sink so low?
In answer can I offer the following possible insights into the mind that Jesus shows us as inspired in the bible.
The scriptures tell us that Jesus only said the things that He heard His father say and only did the things that He saw the Father do. Shall we consider what that means?
It means first of all that Jesus prayed the prayers of God – after Him! It's what we are to learn to do also; to pray what God wants us to pray by being so close to Him!
So regarding fear; can God/Jesus tell us to “Fear Not” and then be fearful while being led by the Holy Spirit? Surely not!
On the other hand we are told that Jesus was tempted just as we are. Could it be that that fear was impressed on Jesus' mind by Satan but He brought every thought into submission/into captivity to obedience to God!
In His greatest trial He showed us the way to be over-comers. We overcome the flesh by the Spirit in us as we see in Galatians 5:16.
Second. Can Jesus think that His road is too hard to take when He tells us that we, as Christians, if we accept our calling, will face persecution? No, never!
We will face persecution but He will give us a way through and He will take care of those who persecute His children. We do not have to worry about it!
Thirdly. Did Jesus come back to the disciples looking for support? Or was He encouraging them to be close to God through prayer. Jesus knew that Satan wanted to sift them like wheat. Not just Peter; all of them! The YOU is plural in the original. And it's through prayer that we come into the presence of God and live in His glory. Jesus wanted them to be like Moses and David who longed to be in the Presence of God. And we get there through communicating with God in prayer.
Fourthly; Jesus was not frustrated – He wanted more for THEM! Even at this time He was trying to build THEM up! But they needed to be awake to do this!
Finally let's look at the incident of Jesus' betrayal. Was Jesus angry?
Jesus said to Judas, “Do you betray the Son of Man with a kiss?” Jesus had been shown Judas betraying Him. He had warned Judas about it. Now He was saying to Judas, 'It's happening now!”
Jesus was not angry. God wants everyone to repent and be saved. But we have free will. Jesus said it would be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrah that for some of the cities of Judea in His day. Why? Because God suggests that He judges based on the level of revelation that you have.
Today we have an even greater revelation that the people of Sodom. If we choose nevertheless to act like the people of the world then the principle says that it will be less tolerable for us than for the people of Sodom in the judgement.
But we should not focus on what people who don't love Jesus do. We must focus on Jesus and learn from Him. Draw close to God so that He will draw close to us and our prayers can be answered.
Jesus' death and resurrection mean that we can follow His example and fulfil His commission to us to take the gospel to the world we know.
And with His faith we could do all the things He did and even greater things because He is in heaven now interceding for us.
That's the power of prayer. As we draw close to Jesus we benefit from what He has done for us, on a day to day basis. Then we can live as He lived because He has told us – As His Father sent Him into the world, so He (Jesus) is sending us. The same!