Nepaug Bible Church - - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes -

Part V: The Atonement Of The Messenger Of Salvation
A. Christ's Credibility Seen In The Unusual Events Of His Arrest
(John 18:1-11)
  1. Introduction
    1. If Jesus is the real Messiah and Incarnate God, then His death on the cross demands He vindicate His identity to non-eyewitness men today who are to believe in Him in spite of the cross.
    2. Since John's Gospel was written to get his readers to believe in Christ, his report of Christ's arrest is quite revealing as to Christ's identity (as follows):
  2. Christ's Credibility Seen In The Unusual Events Of His Arrest, John 18:1-11.
    1. Just before His arrest, Jesus crossed the Kidron and entered a garden with His disciples, John 18:1.
    2. This garden was habitually used by Jesus so He could be easily located by even His enemies, John 18:2.
    3. Judas arrived with the company to arrest Jesus, do Christ asked the group whom they sought, Jn. 18:3-4.
    4. To prove Jesus was not surprised, John told us an event then ensued revealing Jesus is God, John 18:5-9:
      1. As soon as the crowd answered Christ's question as to whom they sought by declaring, "Jesus of Nazareth," Jesus responded, "ego eimi" meaning "I am", Jn. 18:5. (UBS Greek N. T., p. 399)
      2. This statement resulted in the whole company going backward and falling to the ground, Jn. 18:6!
      3. Now, since this company had come armed to take Jesus into custody, meaning they humanly had not previously feared Jesus, there must be a supernatural reason for this their sudden retreat!
      4. We note that Jesus' words of "I am" mirror the words of Jehovah God who appeared in power to Moses at the burning bush, cf. Exodus 3:14; John 8:58. Thus, we can rightfully assume that by this event, Jesus demonstrated that He was not surprised or overtaken by the arresting party, but that He, Almighty Jehovah God, gave Himself into the group's custody for the cross!
      5. Accordingly, Jesus asked the second time whom they sought, and repeated that He had already told them He was Jesus, John 18:7. Obviously, John records He thus put Himself in harm's way!
    5. To fulfill prophecy, Jesus asked His arresters to let the disciples go their way, John 18:8; 17:12. This event fulfilled the prediction of Psalm 41:9 about Christ's losing none of His sheep except Judas.
    6. In an addition, revealing event, Jesus again revealed His choice to surrender to these ruling authorities willingly and by premeditated intent, John 18:10-11:
      1. Simon Peter next drew his sword and cut off the right ear of the high priest's servant, John 18:10.
      2. We know from ancient Roman warfare Peter intended to kill this man, but failed in the process:
        1. Since the Roman helmet was joined of two parts with a seam running bilaterally down the middle, a common death blow was that of swinging the sword to split the seam.
        2. However, Peter missed the seam, and his sword glanced off the side, running down and cutting off the man's ear that lay exposed just outside the helmet, John 18:10.
      3. Jesus objected to Peter's action, stating that he was to put up his sword as Jesus had to partake of the cup of suffering given to Him by the Father, a clear allusion to the cross, Jn. 18:11.
Lesson: Jesus could have (1) avoided frequenting Gethsemanee to escape His enemies, (2) used His supernatural power to crush the arresting party (3) and let Peter continue to attack the servant if surprised or unwillingly overpowered by the throngs with Judas. However, even in His arrest, He repeatedly, clearly demonstrated as GOD that He GAVE Himself up for the arrest leading to His death for us on the cross!

Application: Jesus revealed His capture came about by His premeditated action, by his repeated efforts to put Himself in harms way and His refusal to accept help from anyone else to the contrary. He is GOD, and He is our Messiah and Lamb of God Who came to give Himself to take away the sins of the world.