Matthew – Fulfilled.
There are times in the life of the believer and follower of Jesus that anxious, scattered, unfocused thoughts come, fear is felt and we feel like running away from the situation. But the Holy Spirit, powerful and a part of the Three-in-One calms us and gives us the guidance to take the right path, the strength and courage to face our fears and the situation or circumstance that brought those feelings to the surface. It is the Holy Spirit that transforms us to be and to do all that pleases God and gives Him glory. We cannot take credit for anything good that happens in our human lives. All credit goes to God.
As we read the next passage, it begins with Jesus predicting what his disciples will do when he is arrested, beaten, mocked and sentenced to die on a cross. The disciples, especially Peter, are indignant to this prediction. Peter says, “I won’t!” But then he does exactly what is predicted.
“Then all the disciples cut and ran.”
Confess, aren’t our first thoughts of the disciples, “how could you?” You have been with Jesus Christ, how could you deny Him? Then today, as I read, I am reminded of their humanness, their weakness, their lack of power to stand firm. They DID NOT have the Holy Spirit YET living in them to be their strength, wisdom, and tenaciousness. Jesus, their leader and teacher was taken away from them, the One they leaned on and looked upon as the only answer to life. When he was physically gone, they only had their own strength to rely on. WE are like them when we do not tap into the power of the Holy Spirit who lives in us!
Matthew 26, The Message
31-32 Then Jesus told them, “Before the night’s over, you’re going to fall to pieces because of what happens to me. There is a Scripture that says,
I’ll strike the shepherd;
helter-skelter the sheep will be scattered.
But after I am raised up, I, your Shepherd, will go ahead of you, leading the way to Galilee.”
33 Peter broke in, “Even if everyone else falls to pieces on account of you, I won’t.”
34 “Don’t be so sure,” Jesus said. “This very night, before the rooster crows up the dawn, you will deny me three times.”
35 Peter protested, “Even if I had to die with you, I would never deny you.” All the others said the same thing.
36-38 Then Jesus went with them to a garden called Gethsemane and told his disciples, “Stay here while I go over there and pray.” Taking along Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he plunged into an agonizing sorrow. Then he said, “This sorrow is crushing my life out. Stay here and keep vigil with me.”
39 Going a little ahead, he fell on his face, praying, “My Father, if there is any way, get me out of this. But please, not what I want. You, what do you want?”
40-41 When he came back to his disciples, he found them sound asleep. He said to Peter, “Can’t you stick it out with me a single hour? Stay alert; be in prayer so you don’t wander into temptation without even knowing you’re in danger. There is a part of you that is eager, ready for anything in God. But there’s another part that’s as lazy as an old dog sleeping by the fire.”
42 He then left them a second time. Again he prayed, “My Father, if there is no other way than this, drinking this cup to the dregs, I’m ready. Do it your way.”
43-44 When he came back, he again found them sound asleep. They simply couldn’t keep their eyes open. This time he let them sleep on, and went back a third time to pray, going over the same ground one last time.
45-46 When he came back the next time, he said, “Are you going to sleep on and make a night of it? My time is up, the Son of Man is about to be handed over to the hands of sinners. Get up! Let’s get going! My betrayer is here.”
With Swords and Clubs
47-49 The words were barely out of his mouth when Judas (the one from the Twelve) showed up, and with him a gang from the high priests and religious leaders brandishing swords and clubs. The betrayer had worked out a sign with them: “The one I kiss, that’s the one—seize him.” He went straight to Jesus, greeted him, “How are you, Rabbi?” and kissed him.
50-51 Jesus said, “Friend, why this charade?”
Then they came on him—grabbed him and roughed him up. One of those with Jesus pulled his sword and, taking a swing at the Chief Priest’s servant, cut off his ear.
52-54 Jesus said, “Put your sword back where it belongs. All who use swords are destroyed by swords. Don’t you realize that I am able right now to call to my Father, and twelve companies—more, if I want them—of fighting angels would be here, battle-ready? But if I did that, how would the Scriptures come true that say this is the way it has to be?”
55-56 Then Jesus addressed the mob: “What is this—coming out after me with swords and clubs as if I were a dangerous criminal? Day after day I have been sitting in the Temple teaching, and you never so much as lifted a hand against me. You’ve done it this way to confirm and fulfill the prophetic writings.”
Then all the disciples cut and ran.
Think about it…take all the time you need…
–Jesus prayed to God, the Father, “What do YOU want?” Oh, that we would pray the same prayer and do exactly what He asks, no matter what.
–Wait! We CAN, because we have the Holy Spirit in us to say yes to God!
–All scripture is fulfilled in Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.
In Jesus Name, Amen. I believe.