2020-07-12 – Mark 14.27-72 – Denied, Betrayed and Abandoned
Bible Text: Mark 14:27-72 | Preacher: Pastor Jerry Higdon | Series: Mark | 2020-07-12 – Mark 14.27-72 – Denied, Betrayed and Abandoned
Greetings everyone. I am Pastor Jerry from the First Baptist church Orion Illinois. It is so nice to be able to spend some time with you all in fellowship with the Lord. Thank you and God bless you for being with us today.
Last week we saw how Jesus had His Last Supper before His crucificition and the Disciples partook in what was effectively the First Lord’s Supper with Jesus.
Of which He commands us now to continue doing “this in remembrance of Me”.
Today we are going to see the final events in scripture that lead Jesus to the cross for His crucificition. A most solemn and heartfelt passion of Christ’s story indeed. First we are going to read together the somewhat lengthy account here in Mark, then we will pull out of few verses to further elaborate and reflect upon.
Please turn in your Bibles to Mark 14:27 (page 902) of God’s Inspired, Infallible and Living Word. But let us first start with Prayer.
Peter’s Denial Predicted
27 Then Jesus said to them, “All of you will fall away, because it is written:
I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered.
28 But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you to Galilee.”29 Peter told him, “Even if everyone falls away, I will not.” 30 “Truly I tell you,” Jesus said to him, “today, this very night, before the rooster crows twice, you will deny me three times.” 31 But he kept insisting, “If I have to die with you, I will never deny you.” And they all said the same thing.
32 Then they came to a place named Gethsemane, and he told his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” 33 He took Peter, James, and John with him, and he began to be deeply distressed and troubled. 34 He said to them, “I am deeply grieved to the point of death. Remain here and stay awake.” 35 He went a little farther, fell to the ground, and prayed that if it were possible, the hour might pass from him. 36 And he said, “Abba, Father! All things are possible for you. Take this cup away from me. Nevertheless, not what I will, but what you will.” 37 Then he came and found them sleeping. He said to Peter, “Simon, are you sleeping? Couldn’t you stay awake one hour? 38 Stay awake and pray so that you won’t enter into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” 39 Once again he went away and prayed, saying the same thing. 40 And again he came and found them sleeping, because they could not keep their eyes open.
They did not know what to say to him. 41 Then he came a third time and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting? Enough! The time has come. See, the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. 42 Get up; let’s go. See, my betrayer is near.”
Judas’s Betrayal of Jesus – 43 While he was still speaking, Judas, one of the Twelve, suddenly arrived. With him was a mob, with swords and clubs, from the chief priests, the scribes, and the elders. 44 His betrayer had given them a signal. “The one I kiss,” he said, “he’s the one; arrest him and take him away under guard.” 45 So when he came, immediately he went up to Jesus and said, “Rabbi!” and kissed him. 46 They took hold of him and arrested him. 47 One of those who stood by drew his sword, struck the high priest’s servant, and cut off his ear. 48 Jesus said to them, “Have you come out with swords and clubs, as if I were a criminal, to capture me? 49 Every day I was among you, teaching in the temple, and you didn’t arrest me. But the Scriptures must be fulfilled.” 50 Then they all deserted him and ran away. 51 Now a certain young man, wearing nothing but a linen cloth, was following him. They caught hold of him, 52 but he left the linen cloth behind and ran away naked.
Jesus Faces the Sanhedrin
53 They led Jesus away to the high priest, and all the chief priests, the elders, and the scribes assembled. 54 Peter followed him at a distance, right into the high priest’s courtyard. He was sitting with the servants,[k] warming himself by the fire. 55 The chief priests and the whole Sanhedrin were looking for testimony against Jesus to put him to death, but they could not find any. 56 For many were giving false testimony against him, and the testimonies did not agree. 57 Some stood up and gave false testimony against him, stating, 58 “We heard him say, ‘I will destroy this temple made with human hands, and in three days I will build another not made by hands.’” 59 Yet their testimony did not agree even on this.
60 Then the high priest stood up before them all and questioned Jesus, “Don’t you have an answer to what these men are testifying against you?” 61 But he kept silent and did not answer. Again the high priest questioned him, “Are you the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed One?” 62 “I am,” said Jesus, “and you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power and coming with the clouds of heaven.”
63 Then the high priest tore his robes and said, “Why do we still need witnesses? 64 You have heard the blasphemy. What is your decision?” They all condemned him as deserving death. 65 Then some began to spit on him, to blindfold him, and to beat him, saying, “Prophesy!” The temple servants also took him and slapped him.
Peter Denies His Lord
66 While Peter was in the courtyard below, one of the high priest’s maidservants came. 67 When she saw Peter warming himself, she looked at him and said, “You also were with Jesus, the man from Nazareth.” 68 But he denied it: “I don’t know or understand what you’re talking about.” Then he went out to the entryway, and a rooster crowed.
69 When the maidservant saw him again, she began to tell those standing nearby, “This man is one of them.” 70 But again he denied it. After a little while those standing there said to Peter again, “You certainly are one of them, since you’re also a Galilean.” 71 Then he started to curse and swear, “I don’t know this man you’re talking about!” 72 Immediately a rooster crowed a second time, and Peter remembered when Jesus had spoken the word to him, “Before the rooster crows twice, you will deny me three times.” And he broke down and wept.
Video It was the 1992 Olympic Games when Derek Redmond from Great Britain snapped his hamstring in the middle of the 400 meter semi final. He was overwhelmed with pain and sorrow you could say. And not just because of the physical injury which was painful enough I’m sure, but because of his loss. You see he promised his father that he would finish the rice no matter what.
As he stumbled toward the finish line, his father Jim sees the pain and sorrow and he rushes out on to the track and walks with him. No matter what, they were going to finish that race, and they did just that, together.
Have you ever been overwhelmed with pain or sorrow? Where it seems that things could never get any worse, and like Redmond you wished there was just someone to help you get to that finish line. If you’ve ever felt like that then this is the message for you. I would suggest, that is what Jesus is feeling here in Mark chapter 14. He has eaten His last supper with His disciples, they are now in the garden that we know of as Gethsemane, and in verse 34 Jesus says to His disciples, He admits to them, “I am deeply grieved to the point of death”.
I will suggest He’s already feeling the pain of what He is going to be going through. He’s about to be betrayed by one of His disciples, arrested, flogged and crucified, He knows all this is coming. Then He goes and He prays.
In verse 36 He prays “Abba, Father! All things are possible for you. Take this cup away from me.” The cup that He is talking about is the cup of God’s wrath upon humanity. Jesus is about to drink that cup of God’s wrath, God’s judgment, and God’s punishment upon the whole of humanity poured into that one cup that Jesus is about to take upon Himself and He cries out to His Father, is there another way. His heart is overwhelmed and you can feel His sorrow. Perhaps that’s a question you’ve asked to God before yourself at some point, is there another way? Now see what Jesus says afterwards in verse 36. He says “Nevertheless, not what I will, but what you will.” Effectively saying I really don’t want to do this, but let Your will be done. Not my will but Your will Father.
[Pause] When we choose to become a Christian, we effectively ask God to transform us, to change our life to be more Christlike in character. But what happens if we don’t like the way that God does just that. It is easy to follow God’s plans when we like those plans, but what about when we don’t like the plans God has for us. As a child, when we were told by our parents to clean up the room, it’s seems so difficult, but when we were told to come eat dinner or ice-cream it’s so easy follow those directions by comparison. In life, we find somethings are just so difficult and some things are very easy to do.
In that garden of Gethsemane, Jesus is choosing to obey God even when He knows it is going to be difficult. The question for us is this, will we allow God to transform our lives according to His will, even when we know it means it will lead to a difficult path ahead? Because the truth is, we’re not Jesus, and often we have good intentions to follow Jesus and to obey Him, but when the rubber meets the road, we fail. Jesus is the only one who has ever been perfectly obedient.
I’ve had those good intentions like reading the Bible in a year, I’ve tried that a number of times but never actually accomplished it yet. This year I lowered my expectations and just resolved to read the New Testament in a year, and I think I will be successful this time. But as most of us will admit, no matter how good our intentions are, sometimes we just can’t do what we intend to do.
Jesus goes to Gethsemane and He takes His disciples with Him, and He tells them He knows it is going to be a difficult road ahead. He tells them to pray and watch. Pray and watch, and then we see what happens, not once but three times.
In verse 37 He returned to His disciples and found them sleeping. In verse 39 when He came back He again found them sleeping. And in verse 41, returning a third time He said to them are you still sleeping. He tells them to watch and pray, not for His benefit, but so they won’t fall into temptation at this most very important time. But He also knows as He says in verse 38 that “The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak”. He understands clearly our human condition.
Jesus also understands your condition. When your intentions are good. When your spirit is willing but the body is weak. He clearly understand that, as He sees the disciples fall asleep three-times on that most important night. The spirit is willing; how often do you feel that? Thinking I’m so willing in my spirit to follow Jesus but I find my body and my mind is so weak again and again. We want to obey, we want our lives to be transformed by Jesus. We want to be changed, but it’s so easy to give in to temptation. We are not alone in this struggle. We all suffer from this condition of good intentions but weak flesh. All too frequently, we don’t make the time to pray, we forget to read our Bibles, we feel to tired to attend church or Bible study. “The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak” indeed.
Then Judas, one of the twelve, betrays Jesus for just 30 pieces of silver. He comes into the garden and leads the temple soldiers to Jesus. He then kisses Jesus and hands Him over to the law. Then in verse 50 it says, “Then they all deserted him and ran away.” Jesus, who has healed so many, saved so many, performed so many incredible miracles, even raised people from the dead.. is left alone now in the garden, everyone had deserted Him. You would think that someone would have stayed with Him, but He’s now on His own. He even told them in advance this would happen. In verse 27 Jesus said, “all of you will fall away”. Then in verse 31 Peter insisted emphatically, “even if I have to die with you I will never disown you”. And all the others said the same. Then verse 50 it says, “they all deserted him and ran away”. Only nineteen verses it took, then everyone deserted him, fled and ran away.
One man in verse 51, probably Mark himself, ran and left his clothes behind even as the soldiers tried to grab him. Have you ever been so desperate to get away from a situation that you left your clothes behind? Maybe I don’t want to know that answer, lol. But that’s how desperate they were to desert Jesus in this situation. But our Jesus keeps on going. Try to imagine feeling the way Jesus probably did as He was Denied, Betrayed and Abandoned by everyone He loved.
What happened there in Gethsemane reminds us that the road to following God’s plan is not always going to be easy. In this His-story lesson we see two pictures, one of Jesus, and one of the disciples. The picture we get of Jesus is one who is completely dependent on Father God. Completely focused on God’s plans, and completely obedient to God’s will. Yet He was also completely alone in His trials. He was overwhelmed with sorrow, arrested, flogged and eventually crucified, but He keeps going. The second picture we have is a picture of the disciples, they completely loved God, we shouldn’t doubt that. They are completely focused on Jesus, focused on His teaching, and they are committed to Him. But when they see the road ahead; when they see how difficult it’s going to be, they cannot do it. They have good intentions, the spirit is willing, very willing, but the flesh is weak.
We are much like the disciples though aren’t we? We sometimes we find the road too hard and then we flee or fail God. He set us on a path and sometimes feel we just cannot do it. Our spirit is willing but our flesh is so weak. We run the other way because we’re not perfect.
Try to understand what this garden scene of Jesus is showing us here today, where we have failed, Jesus has succeeded. Jesus has obeyed God perfectly and that is what Gethsemane is all about. We fail all the time. But Jesus overcomes for us. He did this for us, to do what we couldn’t do.
In this “Born Again, New creation” Christian life, we are continuously being transformed into the image of Jesus. He’s changing our lives and sharpening our faith. He’s helping us to be more obedient as we mature in our faith. But the biggest transformation for someone who follows Jesus is the clear understanding that Jesus has taken away our sin. And that is the greatest transformation of all. He has taken away all our sin, our shame and our guilt, and our punishment.
He’s taking it all away and has transformed us to be now forgiven children of God. No matter how many times you and I fail we are forgiven, and that’s the transformation that truly matters.
So when you find one day that your failed yet again in your intentions and your transformation as a Christian, that you fled from him naked yet again. Where you felt again that the spirit was willing but your flesh is weak. Then again remember that Jesus at Gethsemane scene where Jesus took away your sin and transformed you into a child of God that is forgiven. He has taken away your guilt. He’s taking your punishment and your shame. He’s transformed you, and in God’s eyes you are now without blemish. That’s a great message to carry us through, Amen?
Jesus resolutely decided on that night, that He would do the will of the Father, because He knew you can’t.
Final Reflection: In that video of Derek Redmond on that Olympic track, his father came down and helped him in his time of need. Same goes with our Father in Heaven. He is watching over you, He sees you in your situation. Unlike the disciples in the garden, Jesus will never leave you or forsake you. In John 3:16 Jesus said, “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life”.
Let us pray:
Lord, the I know my flesh is weak. Even when our spirit is willing our flesh is weak. Transform us Lord into your image. Thank you Jesus for taking on my sin that day in Gethsemane. Thank You Jesus for never leaving me nor forsaking me. I have hope now because of You. Watch after us Lord, in Your precious name we pray.. Amen..
Next week will be our final verses from this book of Mark. It will cover the final scene that leads to Christ’s crucifixion. You won’t want to miss that message.
Thank you for giving me this opportunity to speak with you today. May the God of Peace, bless you all today.