The leading priests and Pharisees had given Judas a contingent of Roman soldiers and Temple guards to accompany him. Now with blazing torches, lanterns, and weapons, they arrived at the olive grove.
Jesus fully realized all that was going to happen to him, so he stepped forward to meet them. “Who are you looking for?”he asked…Then Simon Peter drew a sword and slashed off the right ear of Malchus, the high priest’s slave.
John 18:3-4, 10
Jesus fully realized what was going to happen to Him…He was aware because His spirit was tuned in to our Heavenly Father’s plans. I had a wonderful prayer time with my wife a couple of nights ago. We felt the need to pray for our family, ministry, and marriage. As we were praying, the Holy Spirit brought two words to my mind. WAKE. UP.
We have been drifting a bit for the past couple of months. Nothing inordinately wrong, just not as sharp as we have been. It’s been difficult to fully be in the moment because pain and despair distract us and dulls our senses. I know I have floated through decisions and moments during the past couple of months. I talked to Tracy about it and we both agreed that we need to be more cognizant of our time, especially in our marriage.
We prayed to be more alert and attentive to the Holy Spirit’s leading in every area of our lives because exhaustion from hard times has the potential of making us slothful and apathetic.
The parallel scripture to the one above is Mark 14:32 and in that account Jesus had to tell His disciples three times to stay awake.
The Spirit is willing, but the body is weak!
Scripture describes the disciples as being exhausted from grief. They were disheartened from what Jesus told them was about to happen; they didn’t know what to say or do. They became sluggish and lethargic and failed to ready themselves for the ensuing drama of Jesus’ arrest and subsequent trial. When we’re not alert and alive to the purposes of God we become just like the disciples (particularly Peter) in this instance and eventually try to find our own path to deliverance.
Look at Peter in this story – He couldn’t stay awake even though Jesus warned of his impending denial. What happened after Judas came with the temple guards and soldiers? Peter, in a carnal state of mind, slashed off the ear of Malchus (servant of Caiaphas).
Peter, in a flash of anger and fear, tried to find deliverance in his own strength. He took matters into his own hands instead of recognizing that it was God’s purpose to allow Jesus to suffer and die so many could be counted righteous. It was God’s will for Jesus to die so that MANY people could one day be delivered from the imputed righteousness of the Lamb of God.
Peter was only thinking about his deliverance at that moment. He was operating in a carnal mindset that originates from a lethargic and dispirited attitude. When we are vigilant and prepared for the Holy Spirit’s work we enter into a heavenly frame of mind. We don’t just think about ourselves. We, in absolute abandonment to God, become conduits for His power to flow for the deliverance of others.
Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand.
We saw this earlier with Peter when Jesus told the disciples that He would die and be raised to life. Peter protested and what did Jesus say?
Jesus turned to Peter and said, “Get away from me, Satan! You are a dangerous trap to me. You are seeing things merely from a human point of view, not from God’s.”
Peter couldn’t see past his own selfish desires. We have to ask the Holy Spirit to wake us up and make us in tuned with the intentions of our God. When we’re exhausted from difficult times we must not take our deliverance into our own hands. We have to find our deliverance in God, we have to trust His purposes, we have to have the mind of Christ, and be directed by the Holy Spirit.
I’m Harold Dorrell Briscoe. Thanks for reading.