Summary: Don't crow about yourself or the Telltale Rooster will crow on you.

The Telltale Rooster

John 18:13-27


Last week we saw how Jesus was in total control of even His arrest. Not only does the Scripture clearly show that Jesus knew that Judas had gone out to betray him and could have simply gone somewhere than the garden, but John 18:6, where all of the soldiers and officials fell backwards when they heard Jesus' reply of "I AM" shows that He had the necessary authority to have stopped the arrest altogether. The Lord of Heaven is also the Lord of the Cross.

This should for ever end the argument who was responsible for the death of Jesus. As we saw, the Jewish officials and servants along with a cohort of Roman soldiers "arrested" Jesus. The next day, the people would shout "Crucify Him!" But the very fact that Jesus was in complete control of the situation shows that He was in a sense responsible for His own death. He took the cup willingly. He was not the victim of fate. Truly, here is the case of "God in the hands of Angry Sinners".

Exposition of the Text

13 The text says that they bound him and took him away to Annas' house first. He was the father-in-law to the High Priest, Caiaphas. In a sense though, he was the power broker as he himself had been high priest for many years previously. But in this fateful year, Caiaphas was the High Priest. Previously we had read in John 6:15 that the people tried to seize Jesus (ἁñðÜæåéí) and make Him king. But Jesus would have none of this. If the people could make Him, king, they could unmake Him king as well. But Caiaphas did not run from the same set of scruples. The office of the High Priest was totally in the control of Rome who dished it out as a plum to whosoever they wished and received a handsome cut of the action as well. Caiaphas could be made a High Priest, and he could be, and was unmade as well. But no one could make Jesus king, and no one is able to take away his crown. He was willing to wear the crown of thorns rather than to submit to being crowned king according to the ideas of the Jewish people.

14 Caiaphas, no doubt, wanted to look the part for the trial. He wanted to control the proceedings. But even in a previous proceeding (John 11:47-53) he had unwittingly uttered a prophecy. God had used him, even though he was utterly unfit and unqualified to even be High Priest. He could turn Him just as easily as he turned Pharaoh in Moses' day. Again, God's sovereignty is demonstrated. Even though it would be of no profit to Caiaphas, God got the glory.

15 Not all of the disciples had fled at this point. John and Peter kind of followed, but in a way not to attract attention. They were deeply concerned and confused about what was happening to Jesus, but weren't going to put themselves at risk by identifying with Him. John simly refers to himself as "another disciple". Here the Greek (ἄëëïò) indicates that he was another disciple like Peter rather than another kind of disciple. After the resurrection, both he and Peter would be disciples of a different sort (Greek ἕôåñïò). It says here that John was know to the High Priest (ãíùóôὸò). The Greek word can range in meaning from "acquaintance to friend". This has led some to believe that this secret disciple is someone else than John such as the learned Nicodemus. Elsewhere, John is called a Galilean Acts 2:7 and unlearned elsewhere (Acts 4:13 ἀãñÜììáôïß, without formal training in letters). So it is difficult to see how John would even be able to mix in the same social circles. But the may have been acquainted with the High Priest through his father, Zebedee's fish business, who sold fish to the High Priest's household. At any rate, this arrangement was by God to let these two disciples come to the trial.

16 Peter was not at first led into the courtyard. But John used his influence to get him admitted. This shows more than a casual relationship between John and the household of Caiaphas. Perhaps this may have worked into favor for the early church in Acts in that there seemed to be a reluctance to punish Peter and John more than they did, such as death. But this is speculation. God is not limited in how he protects His own. Last week, he commanded the soldiers to release them. After the experience of falling backward, they were more than willing to comply. If the Father notices the very falling of the sparrow and the loss of a single hair on the head, He certainly is able to take care of us in every adversity, even if we are unaware of it.

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