Oak Grove Baptist Church

Striving to become the church of choice for this generation.

Greetings, please join us each Sunday morning Live. Here is our schedule:

  ·  Sunday School Discussion at: 9:45AM

   · Sunday Worship at: 11:00AM  (Homecoming This Sunday)

There Are Several Ways You Can Join Us:


Telephone Conference Call

Join by phone       +1-415-655-0001 US Toll

Access code: 126 071 2937


Join by Smart Phone of PC by clicking the link below.

https://reverendpoleonlgriffin.my.webex.com/join/ogbc


Facebook Live      https://www.facebook.com/oakgrove.baptist.507

===========================================

“JESUS’ ARREST”

(THE UGP CURRICULUM)

Sunday, January 30, 2022

 

Lesson Text:  John 18:1-13; Time of Action: 30 A.D.; Place of Action: Jerusalem

 

Lesson Text: John 18:1-13

King James Version (KJV)

I. JESUS’ IMMINENT BETRAYAL (John 18:1-3)

1. When Jesus had spoken these words, he went forth with his disciples over the brook Cedron, where was a garden, into the which he entered, and his disciples.

2. And Judas also, which betrayed him, knew the place: for Jesus ofttimes resorted thither with his disciples.

3. Judas then, having received a band of men and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, cometh thither with lanterns and torches and weapons.

 

II. JESUS AND THE INTRUDERS (John 18:4-9)

4. Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon him, went forth, and said unto them, Whom seek ye?

5. They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them, I am he. And Judas also, which betrayed him, stood with them.

6. As soon then as he had said unto them, I am he, they went backward, and fell to the ground.

7. Then asked he them again, Whom seek ye? And they said, Jesus of Nazareth.

8. Jesus answered, I have told you that I am he: if therefore ye seek me, let these go their way:

9. That the saying might be fulfilled, which he spake, Of them which thou gavest me have I lost none.

 III. JESUS AND THE FATHER’S WILL (John 18:10-13)

10. Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus.

11. Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?

12. Then the band and the captain and officers of the Jews took Jesus, and bound him,

13. And led him away to Annas first; for he was father in law to Caiaphas, which was the high priest that same year.

 

 Golden Text:  “That the saying might be fulfilled, which he spake, Of them which thou gavest me have I lost none” (John 18:9).

 

 I. INTRODUCTION.  Little did the psalmist know that he was prophesying a moment in the last hours of Jesus’ life when he said “Yea, mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat of my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me” (see Psalms 41:9).  Centuries later, on the night before He was betrayed, Jesus repeated this passage as a Scripture that had to be fulfilled concerning Judas and his betrayal of our LORD (see John 13:18).  Judas’ betrayal of Jesus would lead to the LORD’s arrest, His trial, and His crucifixion.  When the opportune time arrived, Judas led the Jewish authorities to Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane.  This week’s lesson focuses on what took place when Jesus was arrested and taken into custody.

 

 II. THE LESSON BACKGROUND.  On the night He was betrayed and shortly before His arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus finished His last Passover meal in the upper room (see Luke 22:7-20) with His disciples and instituted the LORD’s Supper. After washing the disciple’s feet and teaching them about true servant-hood (see John 13:2-20), Jesus predicted His betrayal (see John 13:21-35), foretold Peter’s denial (see John 13:36-38), gave them words of comfort (see John 14:1-14) and promised the Holy Spirit’s indwelling.  Then they left the upper room (see John 14:31), but before leaving Jerusalem for the Mount of Olives and the Garden of Gethsemane (see Matthew 26:30; Mark 14:32; Luke 22:39; John 18:1), Jesus prayed this special prayer known as Jesus’ High Priestly Prayer as He prayed for His disciples and everyone who would believe their ministry going forward (see John chapter 17).  Our lesson begins when Jesus finished that prayer.    

        

 III. JESUS’ IMMINENT BETRAYAL (John 18:1-3)

          A. A familiar retreat (John 18:1-2).

               1. (vs. 1). Our first verse says “When Jesus had spoken these words, he went forth with his disciples over the brook Cedron, where was a garden, into the which he entered, and his disciples.”  The phrase “When Jesus had spoken these words” refers to all that “Jesus” taught His disciples while they were in the upper room (see John chapters 13-16) including His High Priestly Prayer (see John chapter 17).  Wasting no time “he went forth with his disciples” out of the house and proceeded out of Jerusalem.  They crossed “over the brook Cedron” which runs between Jerusalem and the Mount of Olives, “where was a garden, into the which he entered, and his disciples.”  This “brook” is called “Cedron” only here in John’s Gospel.  Elsewhere it is called the “brook Kidron” (see II Samuel 15:23; II Chronicles 29:16; 30:14) and it runs through the Kidron Valley located east of Jerusalem, between the city wall and the Mount of Olives.  The “garden” mentioned here is the “Garden” of Gethsemane which lies on the western slope of Mount Olivet or the Mount of Olives.  While John only refers to it as a “garden,” Matthew and Mark identify it as Gethsemane (see Matthew 26:36; Mark 14:32).  This was a familiar place, for Jesus often went to this “garden” with His disciples, undoubtedly to rest, meditate, and pray (see Luke 22:39).  Jerusalem was filled with pilgrims attending the Passover, and Jesus would want to get away from the crowded city to a private place.  He knew that Judas would come for Him there, and He was ready.  Note:  According to Matthew and Mark’s Gospels, when Jesus and His disciples arrived at Gethsemane, He left eight of them near the entrance and took Peter, James, and John with Him to another part of the garden to pray (see Matthew 26:36-38; Mark 14:32-34).  It appears that Jesus’ human soul needed the kind of encouragement and companionship they could give Him at this critical hour.  But guess what?  They went to sleep (see Matthew 26:39-45; Mark 14:35-41)!  It was easy for the disciples to boast about their devotion to Christ (see Matthew 26:33-35), but when the test came, they went to sleep.  But let’s examine our own selves before we get too harsh on the disciples, because given the circumstances we may have gone to sleep on Jesus as well.  Remember, they had just finished eating the Passover meal and it was getting late.  If we are honest, we all know how easy it is to eat at night and soon get sleepy and fall asleep. However, that was no excuse to fail the LORD when He desired their companionship and encouragement at this trying time.

 

               2. (vs. 2). This verse says “And Judas also, which betrayed him, knew the place: for Jesus ofttimes resorted thither with his disciples.”  Jerusalem was filled with pilgrims attending the Passover, and Jesus would want to get away from the crowded city to a private place.  We are told that “Judas also, which betrayed him, knew the place: for Jesus ofttimes resorted thither with his disciples.”  Since “Jesus” and “his disciples” frequently “resorted” or spent time in “the place” or the Mount of Olives where the garden of Gethsemane was located (see Luke 21:37), “Jesus” knew that “Judas,” whom John described as the one “which betrayed him (Jesus)” would come for Him there, so “Jesus” was prepared.  Note:  Although John does not give the details of “Judas” plan to betray “Jesus” (see John 13:2), the Synoptic Gospels, Matthew, Mark and Luke do.  As the one who would betray “Jesus,” earlier during that Passover week (see Luke 22:1) “Judas” went to the chief priests and asked them what would they give him if he delivered Jesus to them, and they agreed on thirty pieces of silver (see Matthew 26:1-2, 14-15; Mark 14:10-11; Luke 22:2-5).  From that moment, “Judas” looked for the opportunity to betray “Jesus” (see Matthew 26:16; Mark 14:11; Luke 22:6).

          B. A hostile interruption (John 18:3).  This verse says “Judas then, having received a band of men and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, cometh thither with lanterns and torches and weapons.”  As noted in the previous verse, after agreeing with “the chief priests” to deliver Jesus to them, “Judas” looked for the opportunity to betray Jesus and that moment had finally arrived.  John tells us that “Judas then, having received a band of men and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, cometh thither with lanterns and torches and weapons.”  Just before Jesus instituted the LORD’s Supper in the upper room, “Judas,” at Jesus’ directions left the company early (see John 13:27-30).  It was at this time that “Judas” went and “received (or picked up) a band of men and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees.”   The “band of men” was a sub-unit of a Roman legion and normally was composed of about 600 troops, but could be fewer in number.  The word “band” here could be translated “cohort” which was a tenth of a Roman legion (about 6000 soldiers), and this would be about six hundred men.  But for this mission, the number could’ve been less.  The Jewish religious leaders probably made arrangements with Pilate for “Judas” to have temporary use of the troops.  It’s unlikely that the entire “band of men” would have been deployed on this mission, but we can’t rule that out.  In addition to the Roman soldiers, “officers from the chief priests and Pharisees” were also among this group that came with “Judas.”  These “officers” normally reported to the “chief priests” and were probably the same “officers” as those who tried to arrest Jesus earlier but were unsuccessful (see John 7:32, 44-46).  This large contingent that was sent to arrest Jesus was carrying “lanterns and torches and weapons.”  Since it was nighttime, theses soldiers needed the “torches” for light; but one has to wonder why they all needed “weapons.”  It wasn’t as if Jesus had an army with Him and “Judas” would’ve known that.  But it may be that after the welcome Jesus received when He entered Jerusalem riding the colt of a donkey (see Luke 19: John 12:13-15), the “chief priests and Pharisees” felt there was good reason to expect trouble.  Just think about it; this contingent that came for Jesus brought “lanterns and torches” to search for the Light of the World, and weapons to use against the Prince of Peace.

 

 IV. JESUS AND THE INTRUDERS (John 18:4-9)

          A. Jesus addresses the intruders (John 18:4-5).

               1. (vs. 4). This verse says “Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon him, went forth, and said unto them, Whom seek ye?”  At this point John tells us that “Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon him, went forth.”  Since the LORD knew what was about to happen to Him, He didn’t wait for them to find Him, nor did He run and hide.  Instead, He courageously went to meet them and asked, “Whom seek ye?” or “Who are you looking for?”  Of course “Jesus” didn’t ask this question out of ignorance looking for an answer.  Instead, it was like other questions “Jesus” asked that were intended to bring a certain response from people (see Mark 9:13; Luke 6:9; 8:25; 9:18; 10:26; 14:3; 18:41; 20:3-4; John 6:5-6, 60-61, 67; 8:10; 13:38; 18:33-34).  “Jesus” didn’t try to escape what He had come into the world to do.   Instead, He “went forth” to meet them.  “Jesus” had nothing to fear and nothing to hide.  As the “good Shepherd,” He was willing to give His life for His sheep (see John 10:11, 15, 17, 18).

 

               2. (vs. 5). This verse says “They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them, I am he. And Judas also, which betrayed him, stood with them.”  The LORD had just asked them “whom seek ye?” and here “They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth.”  The LORD was ready to be arrested and tried, so “Jesus saith unto them, I am he.”  Note:  In the King James Version, the word “he” is in italics indicating that it does not appear in the original Greek text.  Normally in the King Janes Version when a word appears in italics, it means that it was added by the translators for clarity.  Here, Jesus’ actual answer was simply “I am.”  John uses the phrase “I am” throughout his Gospel to introduce significant statements about “Jesus” true identity.  “Jesus” also used the words “I am” to identify Himself as the Great I am (see John 8:58), or Yahweh which is the Hebrew name for the God of Israel (see Exodus 3:14).   At some point in their history, the Jews stopped pronouncing the name Yahweh because they thought it was too holy for human lips.  Instead, they would say Adonai or LORD.   In the Greek translation of the Old Testament, Yahweh is translated as kurios or LORD and is often quoted that way in the New Testament (see Mark 1:3; Romans 4”8).  English versions of the Old Testament also tend to translate “Yahweh” as LORD.  Then John reminds us that “Judas also, which betrayed him, stood with them” (see verse 3).  Here “Judas” takes his place with those who have come to arrest “Jesus.”  This is the second time in the text that John refers to “Judas” as the one who “betrayed him” (see verse 2).  “Judas” had arranged to identify “Jesus” by kissing Him (see Matthew 26:48-49).  However, John does not mention “Judas’” kiss, which would have occurred either just before or just after “Jesus’” question in verse 4.  By not mentioning the kiss, it seems that John was making it very clear that it really wasn’t “Judas” who identified “Jesus,” but it was “Jesus” who identified Himself.  The LORD’s enemies had tried to lay their hands on Him before, but were not successful (see John 7:30, 44-45; 8:59; 10:39; 12:36), and as far as John was concerned, “Judas’” presence didn’t lead to “Jesus’” arrest.  Instead, His arrest was now the Father’s will.  In the Garden of Gethsemane, “Judas stood” with the enemy, not with “Jesus’” friends—His disciples!  Whenever people pretend to know and love the LORD, they are committing the sin of “Judas”—betraying the LORD.  It’s bad enough to betray Jesus, but to do it with a kiss, a sign of affection, is the worse act of all deceit.

 

          B. A supernatural reaction (John 18:6). This verse says, “As soon then as he had said unto them, I am he, they went backward, and fell to the ground.”  The public act of identifying Himself produced dramatic effects.  When Jesus identifies Himself with the divine words “I am he,” those who came to arrest Him “went backward (or moved back), and fell to the ground.”  People falling to the ground in the presence of God are mentioned elsewhere in Scripture (see Ezekiel 1:28; Daniel 10:9; Revelation 1:17), but here the ones who “fell to the ground” are Jesus’ enemies not His worshipers.  But why did the arresting soldiers move back away from Jesus and fall to the ground when He said to them “I am he”?  The Jews who were among this group would be affected by His “I am” statement which was an affirmation of deity.  The Romans in the group, who were in the majority, were undoubtedly affected by Jesus’ presence, for it was obvious that He was the one in control of the situation.  This reaction was not a reflection of their hearts, but of Jesus’ majesty.  Truly, something powerful in the LORD’s words and presence affected all of them and stopped them for the moment.  Note:  This reaction of Jesus’ enemies is a tiny preview of the moment in the future when every knee will bow before Him (see Philippians 2:10) and all things will be brought into subjection to Him (see I Corinthians 15:27; Philippians 3:21).  This band came prepared for a conflict (see verse 3), but when they were met with surrender and calm, they were overwhelmed.  This may even be a fulfillment of David’s words in Psalms 27:2: “When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.”

 

          C. Jesus extends protection for the disciples (John 18:7-9).

               1. (vs. 7). This verse says “Then asked he them again, Whom seek ye? And they said, Jesus of Nazareth.”  It appears that the reaction from this band (see verse 6) left them temporarily speechless and unable to move, so the LORD “then asked he them again, Whom seek ye?  The repetition of this question emphasizes its importance, for it focuses on “Jesus.”  It is also a question that searches the soul.  But these people who are seeking “Jesus” are not doing it for their soul’s sake; they have their own agenda like many people do today.  In response to “Jesus’” question, the leaders of the band again replied “Jesus of Nazareth.”

               2. (vs. 8). This verse says “Jesus answered, I have told you that I am he: if therefore ye seek me, let these go their way.”  In response to the band’s answer that they were looking for “Jesus of Nazareth,” the LORD repeats His “I am” (see verse 5) saying “I have told you that I am he.”  He had already told them that He was the one they were looking for. But this time in His answer, “Jesus” also said “if therefore ye seek me, let these go their way.”  Even at this crucial time, “Jesus” was concerned for His disciples.  The LORD was showing His love for His disciples.  He was keeping them from being arrested and maybe even from losing their lives.  By surrendering to the His enemies, Jesus was protecting His disciples.  He kept them safe not only spiritually (see John 17:10-12), but also physically.

               3. (vs. 9). This verse says “That the saying might be fulfilled, which he spake, Of them which thou gavest me have I lost none.”  Jesus, the Word Himself, who created everything, had spoken of His protection for those the Father had given him (see John 6:39; 10:28; 17:12), and now he fulfills that word.  Here Jesus said “That the saying might be fulfilled, which he spake, Of them which thou gavest me have I lost none.”  Jesus had asked His enemies to let His disciples “go their way” (see verse 8), and here John tells us that His request was made so that the words He spoke in His High Priestly Prayer would be fulfilled (see John 17:12).  Of course, the protection Jesus spoke of earlier in His prayer referred particularly to eternal salvation.  However, now we see that His protection also includes occasions when our faith is tested just as the disciples’ was and would be again.

 

 V. JESUS AND THE FATHER’S WILL (John 18:10-13)

          A. Peter’s misguided reaction (John 18:10). This verse says “Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus.”  It seems that as soon as Jesus finished talking that “Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear.”  Although this may have been an attempt by “Simon Peter” to protect Jesus, it was a misguided act of resistance.  Jesus had demonstrated that He had complete power over these adversaries (see verse 6), and had also expressed His will that the disciples be allowed to go on their way, but Peter still thought that he had to resist them with force.  Only John records that “Peter” had a “sword” and that “Malchus” was the name of the “high priest’s servant” whose “right ear” was “cut off.”  Only Luke’s Gospel records that Jesus healed “Malchus” (see Luke 22:50-51).  This was Jesus’ last public miracle before His crucifixion.  The fact that only John gives the “servant’s” name seems to indicate that John was known by those in the “high priest’s” household (see John 18:16), although we don’t know how well they knew John. Peter’s “sword” symbolizes rebellion against God’s will.  He should have known that it was God’s will for Jesus to be arrested and willingly surrender to His enemies (see Matthew 16:21; 17:22-23; 20:17-19).  While we might admire Peter’s courage and sincerity, he was certainly demonstrating zeal without knowledge (see Romans 10:2).  Jesus did not need Peter’s protection.  He could have called more than twelve legions of angels if He wanted to be delivered (see Matthew 26:52-54). Note:  Earlier that evening, all of the disciples had courageously affirmed their devotion to Jesus (see Matthew 26:35), and Peter decided to prove it; so he quickly drew out a small “sword” and started to fight! Certainly “Peter” misunderstood what Jesus had said about “swords” earlier that evening (see Luke 22:35-38).  He was not telling them to buy “swords” to fight a physical battle.  Yes, they would have to provide and manage for themselves, but not through the shedding of blood.  Jesus had provided for His disciples and protected them while He was with them on earth, but now He was returning to the Father.  Now they would have to depend on the Holy Spirit and exercise wisdom. When Jesus told them to purchase swords, He was warning them that from that time on their situation would change, and they would be treated like law breakers.  He was not suggesting that they use material swords to fight spiritual battles, but that they get a new mind-set and expect opposition and even danger. Indeed, this battle requires special weapons (see Ephesians 6:10-18).  Peter apparently took the LORD’s words about swords literally and thought he was supposed to declare war!  He made every mistake he could!  He fought the wrong enemy; he used the wrong weapon; he had the wrong motive, and he accomplished the wrong result!  He was openly resisting the will of God and hindering the work that Jesus came to accomplish!  It is very important that once we know the will of God that we stay committed to it.

 

          B. Jesus’ mild rebuke to Peter (John 18:11). This verse says “Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?”   Even though “Peter’s” boldness may have been great, it’s obvious that his misunderstanding was great as well. He wasn’t in line with God’s will, and this wasn’t the first time either (see John 13:6-9; Matthew 16:22-23; Mark 8:32-33).  After Jesus healed the servant whose ear Peter cut off, He said to “Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath.”  This rebuke from Jesus’ had nothing to do with self defense or civil resistance.  The LORD’s point was that He had come to give His life a ransom for many, and nothing should prevent Him from completing that purpose (see Matthew 16:21-23).  Then Jesus said to Peter, “the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?”  To “drink the cup” means to go through with a difficult experience.  The “cup” that Jesus chose to drink was not only death, but it was also the wrath of God upon sin. The drinking of a “cup” is often used in Scripture to illustrate experiencing suffering and sorrow (see Psalms 75:8; Matthew 20:22-23; Matthew 26:39; Mark 14:36; Luke 22:42), and the wrath of God (see Isaiah 51:17, 22; Jeremiah 25:15-29; 49:12; Ezekiel 23:32-33; Revelation 14:10; 16:19).  Earlier, Jesus had prayed, “O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt” (see Matthew 26:39).  The “cup” represented the suffering Jesus would endure and the separation from the Father that He would experience on the cross (see Matthew 27:46; Mark 15:34).  He prayed this prayer three times (see Matthew 26:37-44) indicating that His entire being was feeling the price He would pay for our salvation (see I Peter 1:18-19).  Note:  Jesus was able to accept the “cup” because it was mixed by the Father and given to Him by the Father.  He didn’t resist the Father’s will, because He came to do the Father’s will and finish the work the Father gave Him to do (see Psalms 40:8).  In a sense, the Father had mixed the contents of the “cup,” so Jesus knew He had nothing to fear.  This is a good lesson to us: We don’t have to be afraid of the “cups” that the Father gives to us.  We don’t have to fear what is in the “cup” because the Father has prepared it for us in love.  We can rest assured that the “cup” God prepares for us won’t contain anything that will harm us.  It may contain pain and heartbreak, but He will eventually transform that suffering into glory (see Hebrews 12:2).

          C. Jesus’ arrest and appearance before Annas (John 18:12-13).

               1. (vs. 12). This verse says “Then the band and the captain and officers of the Jews took Jesus, and bound him…”  After Jesus rebuked Peter for cutting off the ear of Malchus, we are told that “Then the band and the captain and officers of the Jews took Jesus, and bound him.” John makes it clear that these men who came to arrest Jesus and “took” or arrested Him, and “bound him” included both “Jews” and Romans or Gentiles.  When Jesus faced Pilate, He made it clear that the Jewish authorities were most responsible for His death (see John 19:11), but the Gentiles played a role as well.  Here John gives us a shocking view of the One who brings freedom to mankind (see John 8:31-36) being arrested and “bound” by representatives of the whole human race—Jews and Gentiles.

               2. (vs. 13). Our final verse says “And led him away to Annas first; for he was father in law to Caiaphas, which was the high priest that same year.”  When Jesus’ enemies arrested Him, they “led him away to Annas first.”  It appears that since “Annas” had held the office of “high priest” earlier from 6-15 A.D., he was probably the most respected and powerful of the Jewish authorities at that time and his influence continued through his son-in-law “Caiaphas,” who was the current or “high priest that same year.”  Therefore, they took Jesus to him first even though John clearly states that “Caiaphas” was the “high priest” at the time (see John 18:24). Note:  Jesus’ appearance before “Annas” was like an informal hearing and was illegal and brutal.  It was illegal because “Annas” who did not hold an office was questioning a prisoner.  When Jesus didn’t answer a question to “Annas’” liking, this hearing became brutal as one of the officers struck Jesus (see John 18:19-24).  To make matters worse, “Annas” then sent Jesus to Caiaphas (see John 18:24), the official “high priest” who allowed false witnesses to testify against Jesus and allowed them to spit on Him and hit Him repeatedly (see Mark 14:55-65).  Then Caiaphas sent Jesus to Pilate (see John 15:1) and we know the rest of the story.

 

 VI. CONCLUSION. “To stand with Jesus or not to stand with Jesus, that is the question.” This has been the issue for people, especially Christians, ever since Jesus was arrested, tried and crucified and unfortunately, it still remains an issue today.  It’s unfortunate because believers should know whether they stand with Jesus or not.  There should be no question about it, even when standing with Jesus is not popular or could even be dangerous.  Judas Iscariot, one of the Twelve Disciples chose not to stand with Jesus in His most trying time.  He betrayed His best Friend.  And it wasn’t because he was afraid; it was because of the money—thirty pieces of silver.  Indeed, Jesus is the best friend we could ever have!  We should never let it be said that the psalmist was talking about us when he said “Yea, mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat of my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me” (see Psalms 41:9). 

  PRACTICAL POINTS FOR DISCUSSION:

1. As believers, we can be in what we consider our safe space and still face opposition to our faith (John 18:1-3).

2. We should not be disappointed if our friends choose not to stand with us during our trials (John 18:4-5; Psalms 41:9).

3. Sinners often find it hard to accept who Jesus really is (John 18:6-7).

4. When we belong to Jesus, we are assured of His protection (John 18:8-9; 10:27-28).

5. As believers in Jesus Christ, our battle is spiritual and must be fought with spiritual weapons not physical ones (John 18:10-11; Ephesians 6:11-17).

6. Although we belong to Jesus, there may be times when our legal system will treat us like criminals when we may not be (John 18:12-13).

 

***The Sunday School Lesson; Union Gospel Press Curriculum, The Bible Expositor and Illuminator***

 

 

“Jesus’ Prayer for His Disciples”

Sunday

January 23, 2022

 

Lesson Text:  John 17:6-19; Time of Action:  30 A.D.; Place of Action: Jerusalem

 

 

Lesson Text: John 17:6-19

King James Version (KJV)

I. WHO JESUS PRAYED FOR (John 17:6-10)

6. I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word.

7. Now they have known that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee.

8. For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.

9. I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine.

10. And all mine are thine, and thine are mine; and I am glorified in them.

 II. WHAT JESUS PRAYED FOR (John 17:11-19)

11. And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.

12. While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.

13. And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.

14. I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.

15. I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.

16. They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.

17. Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.

18. As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.

19. And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.

 

 

Golden Text:  “They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world” (John 17:16).

 

I. INTRODUCTION. 

Most people think of the prayer in Luke chapter 11 as the LORD’s Prayer.  In that passage, Jesus gave us a model for our praying, but it was not really the LORD’s Prayer.  As we shall see, the text in this week’s lesson was actually Jesus’ Prayer as He prayed for His disciples then as well as those who would later become disciples or followers.  We are sure that He offered this prayer in the presence of the disciples because John recorded it.  The Holy Spirit inspired John to write the exact words (see II Timothy 3:16), so there is no error or omission.  We believe and know that this is the prayer the LORD Jesus uttered.  From this prayer we learn what the LORD’s will and desires are for His disciples throughout all time.  We should commit to making His desires our desires.

 

 II. BACKGROUND FOR THE LESSON. 

On the night He was betrayed and shortly before His arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus finished His last Passover meal in the upper room (see Luke 22:7-20) with His disciples and instituted the LORD’s Supper. After washing the disciple’s feet and teaching them about true servant-hood (see John 13:2-20), Jesus predicted His betrayal (see John 13:21-35), foretold Peter’s denial (see John 13:36-38), gave them words of comfort (see John 14:1-14) and promised the Holy Spirit’s indwelling.  Then they left the upper room (see John 14:31), but before leaving Jerusalem for the Mount of Olives and the Garden of Gethsemane (see Matthew 26:30; Mark 14:32; Luke 22:39; John 18:1), Jesus prayed this special prayer in our text for His disciples and all who would believe their ministry going forward.  Jesus began His prayer by praying for Himself: announcing that His hour had come to be glorified so that He could glorify the Father (see John 17:1).  This was a reference to His death.  He then spoke of the eternal life that the Father had empowered Him to give to all who believe (see John 17:2-3).  Jesus declared that He had glorified God by finishing the work that He was given to do and now asked His Father to restore to Him the glory He had with the Father before the world was created (see John 17:4-5).  Now Jesus turns His attention to praying for His disciples.  This is where our lesson begins.

 

 III. WHO JESUS PRAYED FOR (John 17:6-10)

A. Those Who Are Faithful In Keeping God’s Word (John 17:6-7).

1. (Vs. 6).  In Our First Verse Jesus Prayed “I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word.”  

The phrase “I have manifested thy name” means that Jesus had fully revealed God’s “name,” meaning His nature and character.  This was done through Jesus’ words and His works.  Jesus had revealed who God was to His disciples whom He identified as “the men which thou gavest me out of the world.”  God had chosen these men “out of the world” and given them to Jesus.  Jesus told His Father that these men had “kept thy word.”  In other words, they lived lives of obedience for the most part, except for Judas who had already left them to betray Jesus (see John 13:21-30).  From this point on, the disciples would be called the Eleven (see Matthew 28:16; Mark 16:14) until Judas was replaced (see Acts 1:24-26).

 

2. (Vs. 7).  Jesus Continued His Prayer Saying “Now they have known that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee.”  

The LORD stated that “Now” or at this point in time, the disciples understood that everything Jesus had been given was given to Him by the Father.  The specific reference is to Jesus’ teachings which the disciples had received as we shall see in the next verse.

 

B. Those Who Are Faithful To The Truth (John 17:8). 

In This Verse Jesus Continued To Pray Saying, “For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.” 

Jesus’ “words” are God’s “words” (see John 3:34; 14:24), and they bring life and judgment (see John 6:63, 68; 12:48).   In essence, Jesus was saying to the Father, “I have passed on to them the commands you gave me; and they accepted them and they now know for sure that I came down to earth from you, and they believe you sent me.”

 

C. Praying That God Confirm The Disciples’ Position (John 14:9-10).

1. (Vs. 9).  In This Verse Jesus Prayed, “I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine.” 

Here, Jesus told the Father that He prayed for “them which thou hast given me.”  The word “them” refers to Jesus’ disciples whom God had “given” to Him.  These apostles were specifically chosen men and, regardless of their shortcomings, and they had many, they still enjoyed the full love of both the Father and the Son.  The LORD said that He prayed for His disciples and also said “I pray not for the world.”  This doesn’t mean that we should never “pray” for those in “the world.”  Jesus Himself prayed for His enemies (see Luke 23:34), but if we look ahead in the prayer, we see that everything Jesus prayed for was not meant for “the world,” only those who belong to the Son and the Father.  Therefore, Jesus said “for they are thine.”  Although the apostles were the Father’s gift to Jesus, they still belonged to the Father.

 

2. (Vs. 10).  Jesus Continued To Pray In This Verse Saying “And all mine are thine, and thine are mine; and I am glorified in them.”  

With the statement “And all mine are thine, and thine are mine,” Jesus was confirming that what belongs to the Son belongs to the Father, and vice versa, because they are equal in essence.  They have forever lived in perfect unity.  The further statement “and I am glorified in them” seems ironic in light of the fact that the Eleven would soon forsake Jesus.  However, the Eleven would become the instruments for revealing the glory or character and message of God in the world.  Jesus was so certain that His disciples would glorify Him that He said it in the past tense as if it had already been done.  We should be encouraged to know that the LORD uses people who are faithful not perfect.

 

IV. WHAT JESUS PRAYED FOR (John 17:11-19)

A. Praying That God Give The Disciples Unity (John 17:11-12).

1. (Vs. 11).  In This Verse Jesus Prayed, “And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.”  

Looking past His imminent suffering, death, resurrection and ascension as if it had already happened, Jesus said to His Father “And now I am no more in the world.”  Jesus knew that He would soon leave this “world” and told His Father “and I come to thee.”  Jesus said that He would go to His Father “but these are in the world” referring to His disciples who would be left behind “in the world” or on the earth.  He knew that once He returned to the Father, His disciples would face some of the harshest satanic opposition to the LORD’s work.  Therefore, Jesus prayed “Holy Father, keep through (or in) thine own name those whom thou hast given me.”  The description “Holy Father” is only used here in Scripture.  It emphasizes God’s separateness from all evil.  The phrase “keep through (or in) thine own name those whom thou hast given me” implies that God “keeps” or preserves His own by His “name,” or in faithfulness to His “name.”  Jesus then asked the “Father” to “keep” them “that they may be one, as we are.”  God preserves those who are in Christ not simply to save our individual souls, but also to unify us in “one” body.  The oneness or unity that the Son and the “Father” share is an inward spiritual one and believers experience this same unity as we are made sharers of God’s holy life (see Ephesians 3:6; Colossians 1:12: Hebrews 3:14; 12:10; II Peter 1:4).  

Note:  As God the “Father,” God the Son and God the Holy Ghost have always been one, Jesus’ prayer was that believers would also continually be “one.”  God has given believers unity, but it’s up to us to maintain it (see Ephesians 4:1-6).  As we individually draw closer to God, we also draw closer to one another, and the unity of the Spirit is maintained among us.

 

2. (Vs. 12).  Jesus Went on To Say To The Father “While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.”  

Jesus again speaking as if it was already done said that while He was with His disciples “I kept them in thy name.”  No doubt Jesus meant that He had “kept” or protected His disciples from evil, or the evil one, the devil.  Jesus had “kept” them up to this point and now He asked the Father to keep them (see John 17:11).  Jesus said that He had “kept” or protected “those that thou gavest me” referring to the Eleven.  He then stated that since He had “kept” them from evil, “none of them is lost, but the son of perdition.”  The description “son of perdition” means one who is doomed to destruction and refers to Judas.  He is likened to the antichrist (see II Thessalonians 2:3-4).  Judas was “lost” because He betrayed Jesus and never really believed in Him as the Christ, the Messiah.  Judas, by his own choice rejected Jesus and sealed his own doom (see John 13:18) “that the scripture might be fulfilled.”  The “Scripture” that was “fulfilled” is Psalms 41:9 where the Psalmists declared “Yea, mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat of my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me.” 

 Note:  Some people may think that since Jesus’ betrayal was prophesied, that Judas had no choice.  It’s important to remember that although Jesus’ betrayal was prophesied by the psalmist, the Scriptures don’t identify the one who would do it.  It could have been any of the disciples.  However, Judas’ character made him fit to be the betrayer.  Being a thief (see John 12:6), Judas no doubt loved money and sold Jesus to the Jewish leaders for thirty pieces of silver (see Matthew 26:14-16), the amount paid to an owner who’s slave was “gored” or killed by an ox (see Exodus 21:32).  The priceless Messiah was sold for the price of a slave.  Therefore, Judas, submitting himself to Satan, made his own choice to betray Jesus (see Luke 22:1-6).

 

B. Praying That God Give The Disciples Joy (John 17:13).  

Here Jesus Continued To Pray Saying, “And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.”  

Jesus was looking ahead to the “joy” He would soon experience in the presence of the Father (see Hebrews 12:2). This verse could also be translated as “And now, Father I am coming to you. I have told my followers many things while I was with them so that they would be filled with my joy.”  “Joy” is a common theme in Jesus’ teachings.  He wants us to be joyful (see John 16:24).  Jesus prayed that His disciples might experience the fullness of His “joy” (see John 15:11).

 

C. Praying That God Protect the Disciples (John 17:14-15).

1. (Vs. 14).  Jesus Continued to Pray “I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.”  

Since Jesus had “given” His disciples God’s “word” or message, they were “hated” by “the world,” meaning those who oppose Christ.  The disciples had been “given” God’s message and had accepted it and that identified them with God and His Son.  Therefore, like Jesus was “not of the world” and was “hated” by those who opposed Him, likewise, His disciples would be “hated…because they are not of the world.”  Jesus’ disciples couldn’t expect any approval or acceptance from a “world” that “hated” their LORD (see John 15:18-19), and neither can we.  

Note:  “The world” hates Christians because our values differ from “the world’s” values.  Since Jesus’ followers don’t continuously cooperate with “the world” by joining in their sin, we are living accusations against the “world’s” immorality.  “The world” follows Satan’s agenda and Satan is the avowed enemy of Jesus and His people.

 

2. (Vs. 15).  In This Verse, Jesus Said “I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.”  

Since the disciples would be left in a “world” that hated them, Jesus asked His Father “not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.”  The disciples had a mission to carry the gospel so they needed to remain on earth.  But they would also need protection “from the evil” or “the evil” one, the devil.  Jesus had previously prayed that while He was with them He kept or protected them from Satan and “evil,” but now He was asking His Father to “keep them” or protect them from “the evil” or again, “the evil” one—Satan.  

Note:  The disciples needed God’s protection as they faced the temptations and attacks from Satan that would surely come as they proclaimed the gospel message to others.  We too, have been entrusted with the gospel (see I Corinthians 9:16; I Timothy 1:11), and as a result, satanic attacks, opposition and temptation will come.  We should continually pray for God’s protection knowing that this is what Jesus prayed for us as well.

 

D. Praying For God To Sanctify The Disciples (John 17:16-17).

1. (Vs. 16).  Here Jesus Went On To Pray “They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.”  

With these words, Jesus repeated what He stated in verse 14.  Since He was “not of,” or from this “world,” neither are His followers which include you and me.  Like the Eleven Apostles, our home is in heaven (see II Corinthians 5:1-2; Hebrews 11:16).

 

2. (Vs. 17).  The LORD Continued To Pray Asking His Father to “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” 

 Since Jesus’ disciples would be left in a hostile world, they would not only need protection from Satan, but they would also need God to “Sanctify them through thy (His) truth.”  To “sanctify” means “to make holy” or “to set apart for special use.”  It is most often used when speaking of someone or something being set apart from sin and unto God for His use.  The word “sanctify” implies being separated from the standards and desires of the world and unto the mind of God.  Jesus indicated that this separation is accomplished by or “through thy (God’s) truth.”  Then Jesus identified what God’s truth was.  He said “thy word is truth.”  Jesus, as the living “Word” (see John 1:1) is the “Truth” (see John 14:6) and so is the written “Word.”  

Note:  Sanctification is the continuous setting apart of believers unto God as they grow in holiness or purity.  This type of sanctification is accomplished by the “Word” of God (see Ephesians 5:25-26).  As the believer immerses himself or herself in Scripture, which reveals Christ, he or she is drawn away from the world and is focused on divine “truth.”  He or she is gradually transformed into Christ’s image (see II Corinthians 3:18; Colossians 3:9-10).  The “truth” or the “word” that Jesus gave His disciples is now contained in the complete revelation of God—the Bible.  God has called us to holiness, or sanctification (see I Thessalonians 4:7) which is His will for us.  However, it will only be accomplished as we read, absorb, and submit to the teachings of Scripture (see II Timothy 3:16-17).  Day by day, as we apply God’s “truth” to our lives, it will have a purifying effect on us and call sin to our attention leading to confession, forgiveness, and restoration.

E. Praying to God to Equip The Disciples (John 17:18-19).

1. (Vs. 18).  Jesus Goes on To Pray Saying, “As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.” 

 Jesus told His Father that just as He was “sent into the world” by the Father, “even so have I also sent them into the world.”  Jesus compared His sending or commissioning His disciples to spread the gospel “into the world” to the Father sending Him “into the world.”  Both Jesus and His disciples were “sent” with authority to take God’s message of salvation to a hostile “world” (see Matthew 28:28-20; Acts 1:8).  The sanctified Christian is also “sent into the world” to reveal Jesus through life and word, just as He revealed His Father (see John 1:18).

2. (Vs. 19).  In Our Final Verse, Jesus Continued To Pray “And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.”  

Jesus said that it was for the disciples’ “sake” or on their behalf that “I sanctify myself.”  The phrase “for their sakes” refers to Jesus’ obeying the Father’s will that brought salvation, and also set the pattern for His people’s obedience to His will.  Jesus did “sanctify” Himself to God’s special service as He set Himself apart through death (see Hebrews 13:12) giving His life so that His disciples could be “sanctified through the truth.”   In other words, the disciples would be made holy and set apart from the world as they obeyed God’s Word (see Ephesians 5:25-26; I John 2:20-21).  

Note:  The disciples could only “be sanctified” or set apart for God’s service because Jesus set Himself apart to complete God’s mission by dying on the cross. If Jesus doesn’t die, believers would not “be sanctified.” 

 

V. CONCLUSION. 

As Jesus prepared to face the cross, He was very confident that in spite of what would happen to Him shortly, there would always be those who believed in Him. Even though His passion (suffering) would begin only a few hours later, Jesus prayed for the Eleven and all who would ever accept Him, including you and me.  His foremost request for us was that we be unified in love and purpose, just as He and the Father are.  How encouraging it is to realize that when believers are struggling to be unified, Jesus is praying for us about that very thing!  As we remain in the love of God, the world will recognize that Jesus was truly God sent.

 

 PRACTICAL POINTS FOR DISCUSSION:

1. As Christians, we have a relationship with Jesus because God the Father has given us to Him (John 17:6-8).

2. Jesus is glorified in all believers because we belong to both Him and the Father (John 17:9-10).

3. Jesus protected His disciples while He was with them; but now our protection lies with the Father (John 17:11-12).

4. The world hates believers because they hated Jesus (John 17:13-15).

5. Believers are made clean through God’s Word (John 17:16-19).

 

 

***The Sunday School Lesson; Union Gospel Press Curriculum, The Bible Expositor and Illuminator***

 

Please email us to let us know if these lessons are a blessing to you and your ministry.


Thanks

Pastor Poleon L Griffin
ogbc@myogbc.com
=============================================================