Summary: Just as the Gethsemane mob sought Christ with their lanterns, torches and weapons, people today (including veteran Christians) come with their lanterns, torches and weapons - misunderstanding the Christ they seek after.
I. RUMOR: AMAZING WHERE IT LEADS PEOPLE & WHAT IT LEADS THEM TO DO
A. Somewhere Someone Got The Idea If They We’re To Arrest Jesus = War
B. Notice That They Sent A Detachment Of Troops
1. One commentator suggests this amounted to 300-600 soldiers
2. Not only Roman soldiers, but also Temple police & soldiers
3. And then with them are priests & Pharisees, religious leaders
4. Talk about overkill! Who was spreading all these stories about Jesus
5. Imagine how Jesus & the few disciples with Him must have felt
C. And Look What They Came With: Lanterns, Torches & Weapons (TITLE)
1. Lanterns = Greek word lampas = bright and shining light.
a. very bright, but short-lived light
b. portrays something like a lampstand —light that’s intended to “light up” a room so you can see things better.
c. equivalent of a first-century flashlight.
d. its light was so brilliant that it penetrated darkened areas and revealed things hidden in darkness.
2. Torches – whereas “lanterns” burned brightly and quickly, torches were
a long-burning – more dim - oil lamp – burn all night
b. these soldiers came prepared to search all night
c. when they came to the Garden of Gethsemane they had enough bright shining lights and long-burning oil lamps to hunt for Jesus all night long
d. great number of caverns, holes, and caves were scattered all over the hill where the Garden of Gethsemane located.
e. hillside was also a place of many graves with large tombstones, behind which a person could hide.
f. prime hiding spots in great olive trees w/ twisted branches.
g. somehow they got the idea that Jesus would try to hide, allude them and escape from them.
3. Weapons – these guys armed to the teeth
a. Eph 6 describes the full weaponry of a Roman soldier
b. belt, breastplate, greaves, spikes, shoes, oblong shield, brass helmet, sword, and a lance.
c. Mark 14:43-44 And immediately, while He was still speaking, Judas, one of the twelve, with a great multitude with swords and clubs, came from the chief priests and the scribes and the elders
-swords – used to stab someone at close range
-clubs – heavy duty, dangerous, hard-hitting club
d. 300 to 600 troops were ready for a huge fight!
D. All Because Of Rumor
1. Rumor that Jesus would be hard to find
2. Rumor that Jesus would try to allude them once he was found
3. Rumor that Jesus would put up a massive fight once he was found
E. Rumor, Misperceptions, Lies, Gossip
II. NO DIFFERENT TODAY – PEOPLE SEEKING JESUS –THEIR SEARCH IS CLOUDED BY RUMOR, GOSSIP, SUSPICION, MISPERCEPTION & MISCONCEPTIONS
A. Rumor Has It That Jesus Is Hard To Find, So People Come With Their Bright Lanterns
1. Fact is Jesus is not hard to find
Jeremiah 29:11-13 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.
2. He is actually closer than your next breath of air ( Rev. 3:20 – behold I stand at the door and knock)
3. Because people think he’s hard to find, bring their bright lanterns
a. their own light, religious light & enlightenment
- rely on the preacher’s special training & education
- rely on the preacher, priest to interpret for you
- rely on the evangelist to tell you what God wants to say
b. you don’t need special light, vision, insight, special education or enlightenment to find Jesus
c. Jesus said, “I am the light of the World”
d. Jeremiah – “you will seek Me and find Me”
- you – yourself!!!
- don’t wait for Sunday to hear from God – MTWTFS
- the curtain separating us from God wrent on Calvary
e. Luke 11:9-10 And so I say to you: Ask, and you will receive; seek, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks will receive, and he who seeks will find, and the door will be opened to anyone who knocks.
f. soldiers’ lanterns – very bright, but quickly burning out lamps (mans light appears very bright, but quickly burns out)
g. the light of Christ – not only is it easy to find, burns brighter than man’s light and never burns out
B. Rumor Has It That Jesus Wants To Lead You On A Chase So People Come With Their Torches
1. Spiritual game of cat & mouse, catch me if you can
2. Rumor has it that God wants you to “find him” but then chase after him –