The Grace and Power of Jesus in the Face of the Most Infamous Betrayal in History, Part 2 (Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign, Day 296)
TEXT: John 18:1-9:
1 When Jesus had spoken these words, he went forth with his disciples over the brook Cedron, where was a garden, into the which he entered, and his disciples.
2 And Judas also, which betrayed him, knew the place: for Jesus ofttimes resorted thither with his disciples.
3 Judas then, having received a band of men and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, cometh thither with lanterns and torches and weapons.
4 Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon him, went forth, and said unto them, Whom seek ye?
5 They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them, I am he. And Judas also, which betrayed him, stood with them.
6 As soon then as he had said unto them, I am he, they went backward, and fell to the ground.
7 Then asked he them again, Whom seek ye? And they said, Jesus of Nazareth.
8 Jesus answered, I have told you that I am he: if therefore ye seek me, let these go their way:
9 That the saying might be fulfilled, which he spake, Of them which thou gavest me have I lost none.
Today, I am continuing the daily Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign sermon series, which is aimed at sharing the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ with unbelievers and reminding Christians, in this important election year, to keep the main thing the main thing — and that is reaching unbelievers with the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and praying for their salvation, for the problem in America is not only disobedient presidents, politicians, and people, but disobedient pastors, preachers, and parishioners who have refused to obey the Lord’s Great Commission which is to, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” and who have refused to obey God’s repeated commands to “pray without ceasing” for unbelievers, believers, and political leaders. Yes, you should pray for the right candidate to win; yes, you should vote for the candidate that the Lord gives you peace about voting for. But, don’t get caught up in it like the world does. Nothing much is going to change until people get saved and get their hearts right with the Lord.
This campaign is inspired by the following three verses: 1 Corinthians 2:2 which says, “For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” Acts 5:42 which says, “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” And 2 Timothy 2:4 which says, “No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.”
This series is not for Christians necessarily. However, I do hope you are one of those saints who still loves to hear the “Old, old story of Jesus and His love” — As another hymn says, “For those who know it best Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.” This series is primarily for unbelievers, so they can hear and understand the Gospel and be saved from sin and the punishment of sin which is hell. This is message number 296.
R.G. Lee said, “The only way I know for any man or woman on Earth to escape the sinner’s payday on Earth and the sinner’s Hell beyond — making sure of the Christian’s payday on Earth and the Christian’s heaven beyond — is through Christ Jesus, who took the sinner’s place upon the Cross, becoming, for all sinners, all that God must judge, that sinners through faith in Christ Jesus might become all that God cannot judge.”
When Judas and his band of armed men and religious leaders arrive in the Garden of Gethsemane to arrest Jesus, Jesus surprises them by His straightforward identification of Himself. Judas was likely surprised because he would have remembered all of the times the Jewish leaders had tried to have Jesus arrested, but Jesus had simply removed Himself from the scene, explaining, “My time has not yet come.”
Expecting such a reaction, Judas had calculated to arrest Jesus at a time when He and His disciples were isolated and alone, when there were not any crowds around which would make it easy for Jesus to slip away unnoticed. However, they did not find Jesus trying to escape them; rather, He stepped out to meet them as they approached.
It was judas and his crowd, instead of Jesus, who was shocked and surprised.
When Jesus declared, “I am He,” those who had come to arrest Him staggered backward and fell to the ground. While this act demonstrated Jesus’ power even in this situation, it also had a practical effect — it prevented the armed men from seizing the disciples. When the soldiers had recovered from their shock, Jesus said, “Whom seek ye? And they said, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus answered, I have told you that I am he: if therefore ye seek me, let these go their way.”
It is likely that the Roman soldiers in the company would not have recognized Jesus, which was why Judas had arranged a sign by which they would know who to arrest. But Jesus made it clear that He did not want any harm to come to His disciples. He made sure that none of them were arrested along with Him or by accident in His place. By declaring, “I am He,” He made it plain that He would be the only one taken that night. He commanded that the disciples be allowed to leave in peace. In so doing, He fulfilled the prophecy that none of those who belonged to Him would be lost along the way.
The Bible Knowledge Commentary said, “As the Good Shepherd, Jesus laid down His life for the sheep. His protection of the apostles was a perfect illustration of His substitutionary atonement. He died not only for them, but instead of them.”
What Jesus did for His disciples in that moment — shielding them from the wrath that was about to fall on Him — He did for everyone who believes in Him for all eternity. He shielded us from God’s wrath. He ensured that we did not have to experience eternal judgment. He took our place in the courtroom, bore our sentence of death, and suffered the punishment of our sins. He was arrested that night that we might go free for all eternity.
Ruth Hukill wrote:
There was a man more than a man
Called Jesus Christ of Galilee
There was a place where Jesus prayed
A place that’s called Gethsemane
There on a hill called Calvary
There stood a cross of agony
Nailed to that cross where I should be
He took my place at Calvary
And when I ask how could it be
That He could care so much for me
The answer comes so tenderly
He took my place on Calvary
Dear friend, Jesus took your place on Calvary too. But you have to make the decision to take your place beneath the blood-stained banner by placing your faith and trust in Jesus Christ for salvation from sin and the punishment of sin. Here is how:
1. Accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 7:20: “For there is not a just man upon earth that doeth good, and sinneth not.” Romans 3:23 reads: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
2. Accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
3. Accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” The Bible says in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
4. Accept the fact that you cannot do anything to save yourself! The Bible states in Ephesians 2: 8, 9: “For by grace are ye saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is a gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
5. Accept the fact that God loves you more than you love yourself, and that He wants to save you from hell. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
6. With these facts in mind, please repent of your sins, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and pray and ask Him to come into your heart and save you this very moment. The Bible states in the book of Romans 10:9, 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Dear friend, if you are willing to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, please pray with me this simple prayer: Heavenly Father, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.