And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives. 27 And Jesus said to them, “You will all fall away, for it is written, ‘I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered.’ 28 But after I am raised up, I will go before you to Galilee.” 29 Peter said to him, “Even though they all fall away, I will not.” 30 And Jesus said to him, “Truly, I tell you, this very night, before the rooster crows twice, you will deny me three times.” 31 But he said emphatically, “If I must die with you, I will not deny you.” And they all said the same.
32 And they went to a place called Gethsemane. And he said to his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” 33 And he took with him Peter and James and John, and began to be greatly distressed and troubled. 34 And he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death. Remain here and watch.” 35 And going a little farther, he fell on 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. Remove this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.”37 And he came and found them sleeping, and he said to Peter, “Simon, are you asleep? Could you not watch one hour? 38 Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” 39 And again he went away and prayed, saying the same words. 40 And again he came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were very heavy, and they did not know what to answer him. 41 And he came the third time and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and taking your rest? It is enough; the hour has come. The Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. 42 Rise, let us be going; see, my betrayer is at hand.”
43 And immediately, while he was still speaking, Judas came, one of the twelve, and with him a crowd with swords and clubs, from the chief priests and the scribes and the elders. 44 Now the betrayer had given them a sign, saying, “The one I will kiss is the man. Seize him and lead him away under guard.” 45 And when he came, he went up to him at once and said, “Rabbi!” And he kissed him. 46 And they laid hands on him and seized him. 47 But one of those who stood by drew his sword and struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his ear. 48 And Jesus said to them, “Have you come out as against a robber, with swords and clubs to capture me? 49 Day after day I was with you in the temple teaching, and you did not seize me. But let the Scriptures be fulfilled.” 50 And they all left him and fled.
51 And a young man followed him, with nothing but a linen cloth about his body. And they seized him, 52 but he left the linen cloth and ran away naked.
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Permanent Text Edition® (2016). Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
Questions to Consider
1. Briefly review lesson 20 (link above) for context.
2. Examine the map below. Trace Jesus’ movements from lesson 20 (the upper room, #1) to the locales in today’s lesson. Where did Jesus and the disciples go first? (26) Next? (32) (Please note: I do not endorse anything on the website cited below that conflicts with my theology as outlined in my Welcome and Statement of Faith tabs above.)
3. Study verses 26-31. How, in this passage, does Jesus demonstrate that He is both a prophet (27,28,30) and the fulfillment of prophecy? (27,49) As you’ll recall from previous lessons, Christ has told the disciples about His impending death many times. Do you get the sense from this passage that they have grasped what is about to happen to Jesus? Compare and contrast the way the disciples believed Jesus’ prophecy of His betrayal (18-19) with their disbelief of His prophecy that they would abandon Him.
4. Read verses 32-42. If Jesus was God, why did He need to pray? How do Jesus’ desire to pray and the words He prayed demonstrate the Trinity – and the agreement within the Trinity – to us? Compare verse 37 to verses 29 and 31. What do you observe about Peter, and why might Jesus have called him “Simon” instead of Peter? In what ways would it have been better in verses 29-31 for Peter and the others to heed Jesus’ admonition of verse 38 than to make the bold pronouncements they made?
5. What was Jesus’ will, or preference, regarding His impending suffering and crucifixion? (36) Was there any way in which Jesus was lacking faith in God as He prayed (or at any moment of His earthly life)? How did God answer Jesus’ prayer? The Word of Faith heresy teaches a) that it is never God’s will for us to suffer and b) that if God does not answer our prayers the way we want Him to it’s because we don’t have enough faith in Him. How does this passage refute these unbiblical teachings? What can we learn from Jesus’ prayer about the right way to pray?
6. Read Philippians 2:8 and Hebrews 12:4 with verse 36. How far was Jesus willing to go to be obedient to God? How does your willingness to obey God stack up to Jesus’ willingness to go even to a torturous death rather than to disobey God? Is your obedience more like the disciples’ willingness to obey but failure to follow through? (29,31,37,40,41) Do you obey God when it’s painful? Inconvenient? Embarrassing? Expensive? Difficult? When it’s not your will?
7. Go over verses 43-52. Why might the posse that came to arrest Jesus have felt the need to be armed (43) and to place Jesus under guard (44)? If the chief priests, scribes, and elders thought Jesus was so dangerous or blasphemous that they needed to put Him to death, how is it that they needed Judas to point Him out to them? (44) Why would they not have recognized Him on sight? (48-49) How is verse 50 the fulfillment of Jesus’ prophecy in verse 27?
8. Look at verses 51-52 through the lenses of 2 Timothy 3:16-17. God must have thought these details were important enough to include in Scripture, because they’re there. Why do you think God wanted us to know this about the young man? How can we learn, be reproved, corrected, trained for righteousness, made complete, or equipped for every good work by these two verses?
9. Which aspects of spiritual character (ex: obedience, humility, etc.) does Jesus display in today’s passage? What are some specific ways you can emulate Jesus’ spiritual character in your current life circumstances?
In question 3, we saw that the disciples unquestioningly believed Jesus when He said one of them would betray Him, but didn’t believe Him when He said they would all abandon Him. Why is it so easy to believe some parts of God’s Word and so hard to believe other parts? Identify a verse, passage, or promise of Scripture you struggle to truly believe. Study that passage and its cross references this week, and pray that God will help you to trust Him and believe that part of His Word.
Suggested Memory Verse
Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. Mark 14:38