Summary: How did Satan succeed in turning the Apostles into jelly in the Garden?
Disappointed with Deity
Or “What a difference a day makes” Mt. 26:18-41
"Then saith Jesus unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad." (Mat 26:31)
REFLECTION: Someone has said, “God has never failed me…But He sure has scared me half to death a time or two.” Has God ever “disappointed you?” Jesus warned His Disciples that they would all be “offended” because of Him in the coming days. The word offended here is the Greek word “Skandalizo” and means “entrapped or tripped up.”
DIRECTION: The Follower’s of Jesus went through a tragic transformation” during the “Passion Week” in which they were indeed “tripped up”. Jesus foretold this when he said to Peter: "Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:" (Luke 22:31)
The word “Desired” here (ex-ahee-teh'-om-ahee) literally means “demanded” A close look at the challenges of the Devil and the Choices of the Disciples will help us to understand the basis of this “request.”
1. THE DISCIPLES WENT FROM CONFIDENCE TO COWARDICE
What was the snare that Satan used to “Trip them up”? Concern for Personal Ease (The Lust of the Flesh!)
Mt. 26:38,40,41 “Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me….And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter,
What, could ye not watch with me one hour? Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
2. JUDAS WENT FROM PRAISE TO PLOTTING. Mt. 26:6-16
What was the snare Satan used to “Trip up” Judas? Covetousness or “The Lust of the Eyes”
Mt. 26:14-16 “Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went unto the chief priests, And said unto them, What will ye give me, and I will deliver him unto you? And they covenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver. And from that time he sought opportunity to betray him.”
John 12:6 "This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein."
3. PETER WENT FROM DEVOTION TO DENIAL
What was the snare Satan used to “Trip” up Peter? “Conceit” or “The Pride of Life.”
Mt. 26:33, 34 “Peter answered and said unto him, Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended. Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.”
Thankfully the story doesn’t end in failure for either Jesus or Peter. The same Lord who warned of the demonic attack of the coming days also assured Peter (and us) of…
> His prayers. Lk. 22:32 “But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not:
> His Prophecy. “…and when thou art converted,”
> His Plan: “strengthen thy brethren.”
“Out of every disappointment there is treasure. Satan whispers, "All is lost." God says, "Much can be gained." Frances J. Roberts
“There are no disappointments to those whose wills are buried in the will of God.” Frederick William Faber (1814-1863)
“When life becomes all snarled up, offer it to our Lord and let him untie the knots.” Richardson Wright
ILLUSTRATION: Eight-year-old Frank had looked forward for weeks to this particular Saturday because his father had promised to take him fishing if the weather was suitable. There hadn't been any rain for weeks and as Saturday approached, Frank was confident of the fishing trip. But, wouldn't you know it, when Saturday morning dawned, it was raining heavily and it appeared that it would continue all day.
Frank wandered around the house, peering out the windows and grumbling more than a little. "Seems like the Lord would know that it would have been better to have the rain yesterday than today," he complained to his father who was sitting by the fireplace, enjoying a good book. His father tried to explain to Frank how badly the rain was needed, how it would make the flowers grow and bring much needed moisture to the farmers' crops. But Frank was adamant. "It just isn't right," he said over and over.
Then, about three o'clock, the rain stopped. Still time for some fishing, and quickly the gear was loaded and they were off to the lake. Whether it was the rain or some other reason, the fish were biting hungrily and father and son returned with a full string of fine, big fish.
At supper, when some of the fish were ready, Frank's mom asked him to say grace. Frank did--and concluded his prayer by saying, "And, Lord, if I sounded grumpy earlier today it was because I couldn't see far enough ahead."
No doubt much of our complaining is because we 'can' t see far enough ahead."