Jesus knows what’s going to happen to Him (vs.3). His arrest, Peter’s denial, Judas’s betrayal, even the mock trials are all to be fulfilled.
Ironically, Jesus and his disciples leave to a frequented garden and meet a “detachment of soldiers,” led by Judas. With the kiss of betrayal comes the arrest of Jesus and two times He says, “I am He.” On the other hand, Peter denied knowing Jesus twice when he said, “I am not one of His disciples.” But Peter would only learn the lesson of allowing Jesus full Kingship in his heart after his third denial. Have you learned to let Jesus be King of your heart and rule your life, or are you living in denial? Some give lip service without life service, which is a denial. Jesus isn’t an accessory item you add on when you feel like it. Jesus never said, “Give me your heart and pretend you don’t know Me and what I’ve taught.” He wants ALL of you because He gave you ALL of Himself.
Three “trials.” The first one was before Annas, the father-in-law of the high priest Caiaphas. It was Caiaphas who said, “it would be good if one man died for the people” (vs.14). When Jesus was questioned by Annas, Jesus answers honestly. An official strikes Jesus for speaking the truth!! The truth can hurt.
Jesus was brought, from Caiaphas, to the palace of the Roman governor, Pilate, who asked Jesus more questions. Pilate didn’t like to be caught between two sides. The most important question Pilate asked Jesus, “Are You the King of the Jews? Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world, if it were, my servants would fight” (v.36). So Pilate asks, “You are a King then?” Jesus responded, “You said so, and that’s the reason I was born to testify to the truth.” Pilate responds, “What is truth?” (v.38). The truth for Pilate was that he found “no basis for a charge against Jesus” (v.38). However, he still conceded for Jesus to be crucified by letting the crowd decide between a guilty man and an innocent man.
What is truth? Isn’t that the question that haunts every human? As children we believe what we’re told. But adults are skeptical and critical of almost everything because we’ve been hurt, lied to, stepped on, backstabbed, undercut, betrayed; let’s face it – the world is not a nice cruel place to live in.
Jesus invites us to come into the truth of His Word, a better place of love, serenity, and rest. This is what He wants for you!
Christopher Bullock, M.Div.
Pastor in Atlanta, Georgia
North American Division