Summary: As Jesus makes his way to from the Last Supper to the Cross he is abandoned. Abandoned by the disciples who fall asleep. Abandoned by Judas who betrays him. Abandoned by Peter who denies him. Despite this abandonment Jesus does not abandon us.
You can listen to the full sermon here:-
Our King Jesus Easily Abandoned
Here is a Scripture that many people find to be a great encouragement.
We do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin.
Jesus isn’t kind of like an identical twin. He looks like us. He knows exactly what we feel. He experiences life as we do. He understands the challenges, temptations, difficulties, joys sorrows and everything else. He knows what it is like to want life to be different, to be overwhelmed and even abandoned.
Let’s read about this in Luke 22:39-62
Jesus has been together with the disciples for over three years.
But when He needed their support the most, the disciples so easily abandon Jesus.
It begins in
Luke 22:39-46 - Where Jesus Is Overwhelmed and Abandoned
How do we know Jesus is overwhelmed?
You don’t sweat blood unless you are going through significant anguish.
Jesus is feeling crushed.
Jesus is in despair.
Jesus is facing a situation which is almost killing Him emotionally.
What is the cause?
A couple of Scriptures give us the answer.
God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. (2 Corinthians 5:21)
Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree”. (Galatians 3:13)
God is a God of love. But He is also very serious about sin. Sin needs to be dealt with.
Jesus, who has no sin, is about to step into that moment when He will be on a tree … cursed by God … becoming sin for us … paying the price. God is serious about sin, so you can be sure the punishment against sin is not going to be a small fine and a slap on the wrist.
To be honest I don’t think we can imagine the magnitude of the punishment that is possible - because if we could we would be rushing to God to save us from it.
We can’t imagine the enormity of the anger of God against sin. But Jesus can … and He is overwhelmed.
So Jesus does what any human does when they are overwhelmed … He calls on His friends, the disciples. He has a simple request.
Pray that you will not fall into temptation. What temptation?
Well let’s remember that the disciples are also having a difficult night. They know something of significance is going to happen.
Jesus told them they have had their last Passover together.
Peter has been told that he is going to deny Jesus.
The disciples know one of them is going to betray Jesus.
So it is not unreasonable to conclude that the disciples are also feeling overwhelmed, and emotional, and distressed and in despair.
So the temptation they face is the temptation to try deal with all of these feelings in their own strength.
And the way that Jesus … and the way that the disciples … deal with the situation leads to a massive contrast in actions.
Jesus is overwhelmed and comes in prayer. If this can be taken away then please Father do that … yet not My will, but Your will be done.
Then heaven ministers to Jesus and He moves forward strengthened.
The disciples are overwhelmed but they don’t come in prayer. They see Jesus fall to the ground. They hear Him crying out to the Father.
It’s dark. It’s been a long day. They are emotionally drained. Their eyes get heavy. They want to stay awake. But they can’t.
Suddenly Jesus is there. “You couldn’t keep watch, not even for one hour.”
Jesus specifically asked for them to be awake … and to pray. But they have abandoned their responsibility. I’m sure they are willing, but they are weak.
Why the difference in the outcomes?
Jesus prays … the disciples don’t.
That is true for so many of us isn’t it. We don’t pray.
We are consumed by our work … but we don’t pray.
We find funny videos on the internet … but we don’t pray.
We fall into a routine eat, sleep, work … eat, sleep, work … but we don’t pray.
We follow 284 friends on facebook … but we don’t pray.
Life gets overwhelming, difficult, challenging, emotional … but we don’t pray.
Jesus is falling on His knees overwhelmed by the cost of the journey ahead, but willing to take all our sin and bring us into the kingdom.
We know the cost has been paid.