Meditation: Read Matthew 26:47 – 27:54

It is late.  Surely after midnight in the Garden of Gethsemane.  The fellowship of Thursday evening gives way to the dark betrayal of Jesus by one of the Twelve.  On Friday, Jesus is betrayed, arrested, denied, falsely accused, condemned to die, mocked and crucified between two thieves.  Friday is the death of Jesus Christ and, seemingly, all that he promised. Friday ends with suffering and sorrow. Friday ends with all who were trusting in Jesus to be the Messiah of Israel, saying, along with the two men on the road to Emmaus, “But we had hoped he was the one; the one to redeem Israel.”

Questions to Discuss

Jesus is not a passive participant in the events of Passion week.  As a matter of fact, he is actively in control of the events of the week.  How does Jesus demonstrate that he is in control of the events as they are happening in the garden?  Before Caiaphas and the Council? Before Pilate? In his death? How does the Bible prepare us for Passion Week, particularly Friday? (Hint: See Isaiah 50:6 & 52:13-53:12)

Point to Ponder:

A crucified Jesus brings no hope.  A resurrected Jesus is the hope of the world.

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