Matthew Chapter Twenty-six
The Lord had finished His discourses. He prepares (chap. 26) to suffer, and to make His last and touching adieus to His disciples, at the table of His last passover on earth, at which He instituted, the simple and precious memorial which recalls His sufferings and His love with such profound interest. This part of our Gospel requires little explanation-not, assuredly, that it is of less interest, but because it needs to be felt rather than explained.
With what simplicity the Lord announces that which was to happen! (v. 2). He had already arrived at Bethany, six days before the passover (John 12:1): there He abode, with the exception of the last supper, until He was taken captive in the garden of Gethsemane, although He visited Jerusalem, and partook of His last meal there.
We have already examined the discourses uttered during those six days, as well as His actions, such as the cleansing of the temple. That which precedes this chapter (26) is either the manifestation of His rights as Emmanuel, King of Israel, or that of the judgment of the great King with respect to the people-a judgment expressed in discourses to which the people could make no answer; or, finally, the condition of His disciples during His absence. We have now His submission to the sufferings appointed Him, to the judgment about to be executed upon Him; but which was, in truth, only the fulfilment of the counsels of God His Father, and of the work of His own love.
The picture of man's dreadful sin in the crucifixion of Jesus unfolds before our eyes. But the Lord Himself (chap. 26:1) announces it beforehand with all the calmness of One who had come for this purpose. Before the consultations of the chief priests had taken place, Jesus speaks of it as a settled thing: "Ye know that after two days is the feast of the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified."
Afterwards (v. 3) the priests, the scribes, and the elders assemble to concert their plans for obtaining possession of His Person, and ridding themselves of Him.
In a word, first, the marvellous counsels of God, and the submission of Jesus, according to His knowledge of those counsels and of the circumstances which should accomplish them; and, afterwards, the iniquitous counsels of man, which do but fulfil those of God. Their purposed arrangement of detail not to take Him on the feast day as they dreaded the people (chap. 26:5) was not God's and fails: He was to suffer at the feast.
Judas was but the instrument of their malice in the hand of Satan; who, after all, did but arrange these things according to divine intention. They wished, but in vain, to avoid taking Him at the time of the feast, on account of the multitude, who might favour Jesus, if He appealed to them. They had done so at His entrance into Jerusalem. They supposed Jesus would do so, for wickedness always reckons on finding its own principles in others. This is why it so frequently fails in circumventing the upright-they are artless. Here it was the will of God, that Jesus should suffer at the feast. But He had prepared a gracious relief to the heart of Jesus-a balm to His heart more than to His body-a circumstance which is used by the enemy to drive Judas to extremity and put him in connection with the chief priests.
Bethany (linked in memory with the last moments of peace and tranquillity in the Saviour's life, the place where dwelt Martha and Mary, and Lazarus the risen dead)-Bethany  receives Jesus for the last time: the blessed but momentary retreat of a heart which, ever ready to pour itself out in love, was ever straitened in a world of sin, that did not and could not respond to it; yet a heart which has given us, in His relations with this beloved family, the example of an affection perfect, yet human, which found sweetness in being responded to and appreciated. The nearness of the cross, where He would have to set His face as a flint, did not deprive His heart of the joy or the sweetness of this communion, while rendering it solemn and affecting. In doing the work of God He did not cease to be man. In everything He condescended to be ours. He could no longer own Jerusalem, and this sanctuary sheltered Him for a moment from the rude hand of man. Here He could display what He ever was as man. It is with reason, that the act of one who in a certain sense could appreciate what He felt  (whose affection instinctively entered into the rising enmity against the object she loved and was drawn out by it), and the act that expressed the estimate her heart had of His preciousness and grace should be told in all the world. This is a scene, a testimony, that brings the Lord sensibly near to us, that awakens a feeling in our hearts which sanctifies by binding them to His beloved Person.
His daily life was one continued tension of soul, in proportion to the strength of His love-a life of devotedness in the midst of sin and misery. For a moment He could, and would own (in presence of the power of evil, now to have its way, and the love that clung to Him thus bowing under it, through true knowledge of Him cultivated in sitting at His feet) that devotedness to Himself, drawn out by that which His soul was in divine perfectness bowing to. He could give an intelligent voice, its true meaning, to that which divinely wrought affection silently acted on. 
The reader will do well carefully to study this scene of touching condescension and outpouring of heart. Jesus, Emmanuel, King and Supreme Judge, had just been causing all things to pass in judgment before Him (from chap. 21 to the end of 25). He had finished that which He had to say. His task here, in this respect, was accomplished. He now takes the place of Victim; He has only to suffer, and can allow Himself freely to enjoy the touching expressions of affection that flow from a heart devoted to Him. He could but taste the honey and pass on; but He does taste it, and did not reject an affection which His heart could and did appreciate.
Again, observe the effect of deep affection for the Lord. This affection necessarily breathes the atmosphere in which, at that moment, the spirit of the Lord is found. The woman who anointed Him was not informed of the circumstances about to happen, nor was she a prophetess. But the approach of that hour of darkness was felt by one whose heart was fixed on Jesus.  The different forms of evil developed themselves before Him, and displayed themselves in their true colours; and, under the influence of one master, even Satan, grouped themselves around the only object against whom it was worthwhile to array this concentration of malice, and who brought their true character out into open daylight.
But the perfectness of Jesus, which drew out the enmity, drew out the affection in her; and she (so to speak) reflected the perfectness in the affection; and as that perfectness was put in action and drawn to light by the enmity, so was her affection. Thus Christ's heart could not but meet it. Jesus, by reason of this enmity, was still more the object that occupied a heart which, doubtless led of God, instinctively apprehended what was going on. The time of testimony, and even that of the explanation of His relationship to all around Him, was over. His heart was free to enjoy the good and true and spiritual affections of which He was the object; and which, whatever might be their human form, shewed so plainly their divine origin, in that they were attached to that object on which, at this solemn moment, all the attention of heaven was centred.
Jesus Himself was conscious of His position. His thoughts were on His departure. During the exercise of His power, He hides-He forgets-Himself. But now oppressed, rejected, and like a lamb led to the slaughter, He feels that He is the just object of the thoughts of those who belong to Him, of all who have hearts to appreciate that which God appreciates. His heart is full of the coming events, see v. 2, 10-13, 18, 21.
But yet a few words more on the woman who anointed Him The effect of having the heart fixed in affection on Jesus is shewn in her in a striking manner. Occupied with Him, she is sensible of His situation. She feels what affects Him; and this causes her affection to act in accordance with the special devotedness which that situation inspires. As hatred against Him rose up to murderous intent, the spirit of devotedness to Him grows in answer to it in her. Consequently, with the tact of devotedness, she does precisely that which was suited to His situation. The poor woman was not intelligently aware of this; yet she did the thing that was meet. Her value for the Person of Jesus, so infinitely precious to her, made her quick-sighted with respect to that which was passing in His mind. In her eyes Christ was invested with all the interest of His circumstances; and she lavishes upon Him that which expressed her affection. Fruit of this sentiment, her action met the circumstances; and, although it was but the instinct of her heart, Jesus gives it all the value which His perfect intelligence could attribute to it, embracing at once the sentiments of her heart and the coming events.
But this testimony of affection and devotedness to Christ brings out the selfishness, the want of heart, of the others. They blame the poor woman. Sad proof (to say nothing of Judas  how little the knowledge of that which concerns Jesus necessarily awakens suitable affection in our hearts! After this Judas goes out, and agrees with the unhappy priests to betray Jesus to them for the price of a slave.
The Lord pursues His career of love; and as He had accepted the poor woman's testimony of affection, so He now bestows on His disciples one of infinite value to our souls. Verse 16 concludes the subject of which we have been speaking: Christ's knowledge, according to God, of that which awaited Him; the conspiracy of the priests; the affection of the poor woman, accepted by the Lord; the selfish cold-heartedness of the disciples; the treachery of Judas.
The Lord now institutes the memorial of the true passover. He sends the disciples to make arrangements for the celebration of the feast at Jerusalem. He points out Judas as the one who would deliver Him up to the Jews. It will be noticed, that it was not merely His knowledge of the one who should betray Him which the Lord here expresses-He knew that when He called him; but He says, "One of you shall betray me." It was that which touched His heart: He wished it to touch theirs likewise.
He then points out that it is a Saviour slain who is to be remembered. It is no longer a question of the living Messiah: all that was over. It was no longer the remembrance of Israel's deliverance from the slavery of Egypt. Christ, and Christ slain, began an entirely new order of things. Of Him they were now to think-of Him slain on earth. He then draws their attention to the blood of the new covenant, adding that which extends it to others besides the Jews, without naming them-"It is shed for many." Moreover, this blood is not, as at Sinai, only to confirm the covenant, for fidelity to which they were responsible; it was shed for the remission of sins. So that the Lord's supper presents the remembrance of Jesus slain, who, by dying, has broken with the past; has laid the foundation of the new covenant; obtained the remission of sins; and opened the door to the Gentiles. It is only in His death that the supper presents Him to us. His blood is apart from His body: He is dead. It is neither Christ living on the earth, nor Christ glorified in heaven. He is separate from His people, as to their joys on earth; but they are to expect Him as the companion of the happiness He has secured for them-for He condescends to be so-in better days:-"I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new  with you in my Father's kingdom." But, these links broken, who, save Jesus, could sustain the conflict? All would forsake Him. The testimonies of the word should be accomplished. It was written, "I will smite the Shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered abroad."
Nevertheless He would go, to renew His relationship, as a risen Saviour, with these poor of the flock, to the same place where He had already identified Himself with them during His life. He would go before them into Galilee. This promise is very remarkable, because the Lord resumes, under a new form, His Jewish relationship with them and with the kingdom. We may here remark that, as He had judged all classes (to the end of chap. 25), He now exhibits the character of His relationship with all those among whom He maintained any. Whether it is the woman, or Judas, or the disciples, each one takes his place in connection with the Lord. This is all we find here. If Peter had natural energy enoughto go a little farther, it would only be for a deeper fall in the place where the Lord alone could stand.
And now He isolates Himself to present, in supplication to His Father, the sufferings that awaited Him.
But while isolating Himself for prayer, He takes three of His disciples with Him, that in this solemn moment they may watch with Him. They were the same three who were with Him during the transfiguration. They were to see His glory in the kingdom, and His sufferings. He goes a little way beyond them. As for them, they fall asleep, as they did on the mount of transfiguration. The scene here is described in Hebrews 5:7. Jesus was not yet drinking the cup, but it was before His eyes. On the cross He drank it, made sin for us, His soul feeling itself forsaken of Him. Here it is the power of Satan, using death as a terror with which to overwhelm Him. But the consideration of this subject will be more in place when we come to Luke's Gospel.
We here see His soul under the load of death-by anticipation--as He alone could know it, nor had it as yet lost its sting. We know who has the power of death, and death as yet had the full character of the wages of sin, and the curse, of God's judgment. But He watches and He prays. As man, subjected by His love to this assault, in the presence of the most powerful temptation to which He could be exposed, on the one hand He watches; on the other, He presents His anguish to His Father. His communion was not interrupted here, however great His distress. This distress only cast Him the more, in all submission and in all reliance, upon His Father. But if we were to be saved, if God was to be glorified in Him who had undertaken our cause, the cup must not pass away from Him. And His submission is complete.
He tenderly reminds Peter of his false confidence,  making him sensible of his weakness; but Peter was too full of himself to profit by it; he awakes from his sleep, but his self-confidence is not shaken. A sadder experience was needed for its cure.
The Lord therefore takes the cup, but He takes it from His Father's hand. It was His will that He should drink it. Committing Himself thus entirely to His Father, it is neither from the hand of His enemies, nor from that of Satan (though they were the instruments), that He takes it. According to the perfection with which He had subjected Himself to the will of God in this matter, committing all to Him, it is from His hand alone that He receives it. It is the Father's will. It is thus that we escape from second causes, and from the temptations of the enemy, by seeking only the will of God who directs all things. It is from Him we receive affliction and trial, if they come.
The disciples need no longer watch: the hour is come.  He was to be betrayed into the hands of men. This was saying enough. Judas designates Him by a kiss. Jesus goes to meet the multitude, rebuking Peter for seeking to resist with carnal weapons. Had Christ wished to escape, He could have asked for twelve legions of angels and had them; but all things must be fulfilled.  It was the hour of His submission to the effect of the malice of man and the power of darkness, and God's judgment against sin. He is the Lamb for the slaughter. Then all the disciples forsake Him. He surrenders Himself, setting before the crowd that came what they were doing. If no one can prove Him guilty, He will not deny the truth. He confesses the glory of His Person as Son of God, and declares that henceforth they should see the Son of man no longer in the meekness of One who would not break the bruised reed, but coming in the clouds of heaven, and sitting on the right hand of power. Having borne this testimony He is condemned on account of that which He said of Himself-for the confession of the truth. The false witnesses did not succeed. The priests and the heads of Israel were guilty of His death, by virtue of their own rejection of the testimony He rendered to the truth. He was the Truth; they were under the power of the father of lies. They rejected the Messiah, the Saviour of His people. He would come to them no more, except as Judge.
They insult and outrage Him. Each one alas! takes, as we have seen, his own place-Jesus, that of Victim; the others, the place of betrayal, rejection, abandonment, denial of the Lord. What a picture! What a solemn moment! Who could stand in it? Christ alone could steadily pass through it. And He passed through it as a victim. As such, He must be stripped of all, and that in the presence of God. Everything else disappeared, except the sin which led to it; and, according to grace, that also before the powerful efficacy of this act. Peter, self-confident, hesitating, detected, answering with untruth, swearing, denies his Master; and, painfully convinced of man's powerlessness against the enemy of his soul and against sin, he goes out and weeps bitterly: tears, which cannot efface his guilt, but which, while proving the existence, through grace, of uprightness of heart, bear witness to that powerlessness which uprightness of heart cannot remedy. 
 It was not in Martha's house that this scene took place, but that of Simon the leper: Martha served and Lazarus sat at meat. This makes the intelligent act of Mary more entirely personal.
 No instance is found of the disciples ever understanding what Jesus said to them.
 Christ meets the heart of the poor woman in the city which was a sinner, and told God's mind out there, and told it to her. He meets Mary's heart here, and justifies and satisfies her affection, and gave the divine estimate of what she did. He met Mary Magdalene's heart at the sepulchre, to whom the world was emptiness if He was not there, and tells God'smind in its highest forms of blessing. Such is the effect of attachment to Christ.
 The enmity of the chiefs of Israel was known to the disciples-"Master, the Jews of late sought to stone thee, and goest thou thither again?" And afterwards by Thomas-a gracious testimony to the love of one who afterwards shewed his unbelief as to Jesus' resurrection-"let us go that we may die with him." Mary's heart doubtless felt this enmity, and as it grew, her attachment to the Lord grew with it.
 Judas's heart was the spring of this evil, but the other disciples, not occupied with Christ, fall into the snare.
 "New" is not anew, but in an entirely new way.
 It is wonderful to see the Lord in the full agony of the anticipated cup, only as yet presenting it to His Father, not drinking the cup; yet turning to the disciples and speaking to them in calm grace as if in Galilee, and turning back to the dreadful conflict of spirit Himself exactly for what was before His soul. In Matthew He is victim, I add, and every aggravation, with no alleviating circumstance, is here what His soul meets.
 I purpose speaking on the Lord's sufferings when studying the Gospel of Luke, where they are described more in detail; because it is as Son of man that He is there especially presented.}
 Remark here in so solemn and crucial a moment, the place that the Lord gives to the scriptures: that thus it must be, for it was there (v. 54). They are the word of God.}
 I think it will be found, on comparing the Gospels, that the Lord was examined at Caiaphas's over night, when Peter denies Him, and that they met formally again in the morning, and, asking the blessed Lord, received from Himself the confession on which they led Him to Pilate. Over night it was only the active leaders. In the morning there was a formal assembling of the Sanhedrim.
── John Darby《Synopsis of Matthew》
The rulers conspire against Christ. (1-5) Christ anointed at Bethany. (6-13) Judas bargains to betray Christ. (14-16) The Passover. (17-25) Christ institutes his holy supper. (26-30) He warns his disciples. (31-35) His agony in the garden. (36-46) He is betrayed. (47-56) Christ before Caiaphas. (57-68) Peter denies him. (69-75)
Commentary on Matthew 26:1-5
(Read Matthew 26:1-5)
Our Lord had often told of his sufferings as at a distance, now he speaks of them as at hand. At the same time the Jewish council consulted how they might put him to death secretly. But it pleased God to defeat their intention. Jesus, the true paschal Lamb, was to be sacrificed for us at that very time, and his death and resurrection rendered public.
Commentary on Matthew 26:6-13
(Read Matthew 26:6-13)
The pouring ointment upon the head of Christ was a token of the highest respect. Where there is true love in the heart to Jesus Christ, nothing will be thought too good to bestow upon him. The more Christ's servants and their services are cavilled at, the more he manifests his acceptance. This act of faith and love was so remarkable, that it would be reported, as a memorial of Mary's faith and love, to all future ages, and in all places where the gospel should be preached. This prophecy is fulfilled.
Commentary on Matthew 26:14-16
(Read Matthew 26:14-16)
There were but twelve called apostles, and one of them was like a devil; surely we must never expect any society to be quite pure on this side heaven. The greater profession men make of religion, the greater opportunity they have of doing mischief, if their hearts be not right with God. Observe, that Christ's own disciple, who knew so well his doctrine and manner of his life, and was false to him, could not charge him with any thing criminal, though it would have served to justify his treachery. What did Judas want? Was not he welcome wherever his Master was? Did he not fare as Christ fared? It is not the lack, but the love of money, that is the root of all evil. After he had made that wicked bargain, Judas had time to repent, and to revoke it; but when lesser acts of dishonesty have hardened the conscience men do without hesitation that which is more shameful.
Commentary on Matthew 26:17-25
(Read Matthew 26:17-25)
Observe, the place for their eating the passover was pointed out by Christ to the disciples. He knows those hidden ones who favour his cause, and will graciously visit all who are willing to receive him. The disciples did as Jesus had appointed. Those who would have Christ's presence in the gospel passover, must do what he says. It well becomes the disciples of Christ always to be jealous over themselves, especially in trying times. We know not how strongly we may be tempted, nor how far God may leave us to ourselves, therefore we have reason not to be high-minded, but to fear. Heart-searching examination and fervent prayer are especially proper before the Lord's supper, that, as Christ our Passover is now sacrificed for us, we may keep this feast, renewing our repentance, our faith in his blood, and surrendering ourselves to his service.
Commentary on Matthew 26:26-30
(Read Matthew 26:26-30)
This ordinance of the Lord's supper is to us the passover supper, by which we commemorate a much greater deliverance than that of Israel out of Egypt. Take, eat; accept of Christ as he is offered to you; receive the atonement, approve of it, submit to his grace and his government. Meat looked upon, be the dish ever so well garnished, will not nourish; it must be fed upon: so must the doctrine of Christ. This is my body; that is, spiritually, it signifies and represents his body. We partake of the sun, not by having the sun put into our hands, but the beams of it darted down upon us; so we partake of Christ by partaking of his grace, and the blessed fruits of the breaking of his body. The blood of Christ is signified and represented by the wine. He gave thanks, to teach us to look to God in every part of the ordinance. This cup he gave to the disciples with a command, Drink ye all of it. The pardon of sin is that great blessing which is, in the Lord's supper, conferred on all true believers; it is the foundation of all other blessings. He takes leave of such communion; and assures them of a happy meeting again at last; "Until that day when I drink it new with you", may be understood of the joys and glories of the future state, which the saints shall partake with the Lord Jesus. That will be the kingdom of his Father; the wine of consolation will there be always new. While we look at the outward signs of Christ's body broken and his blood shed for the remission of our sins, let us recollect that the feast cost him as much as though he had literally given his flesh to be eaten and his blood for us to drink.
Commentary on Matthew 26:31-35
(Read Matthew 26:31-35)
Improper self-confidence, like that of Peter, is the first step to a fall. There is a proneness in all of us to be over-confident. But those fall soonest and foulest, who are the most confident in themselves. Those are least safe, who think themselves most secure. Satan is active to lead such astray; they are most off their guard: God leaves them to themselves, to humble them.
Commentary on Matthew 26:36-46
(Read Matthew 26:36-46)
He who made atonement for the sins of mankind, submitted himself in a garden of suffering, to the will of God, from which man had revolted in a garden of pleasure. Christ took with him into that part of the garden where he suffered his agony, only those who had witnessed his glory in his transfiguration. Those are best prepared to suffer with Christ, who have by faith beheld his glory. The words used denote the most entire dejection, amazement, anguish, and horror of mind; the state of one surrounded with sorrows, overwhelmed with miseries, and almost swallowed up with terror and dismay. He now began to be sorrowful, and never ceased to be so till he said, It is finished. He prayed that, if possible, the cup might pass from him. But he also showed his perfect readiness to bear the load of his sufferings; he was willing to submit to all for our redemption and salvation. According to this example of Christ, we must drink of the bitterest cup which God puts into our hands; though nature struggle, it must submit. It should be more our care to get troubles sanctified, and our hearts satisfied under them, than to get them taken away. It is well for us that our salvation is in the hand of One who neither slumbers nor sleeps. All are tempted, but we should be much afraid of entering into temptation. To be secured from this, we should watch and pray, and continually look unto the Lord to hold us up that we may be safe. Doubtless our Lord had a clear and full view of the sufferings he was to endure, yet he spoke with the greatest calmness till this time. Christ was a Surety, who undertook to be answerable for our sins. Accordingly he was made sin for us, and suffered for our sins, the Just for the unjust; and Scripture ascribes his heaviest sufferings to the hand of God. He had full knowledge of the infinite evil of sin, and of the immense extent of that guilt for which he was to atone; with awful views of the Divine justice and holiness, and the punishment deserved by the sins of men, such as no tongue can express, or mind conceive. At the same time, Christ suffered being tempted; probably horrible thoughts were suggested by Satan that tended to gloom and every dreadful conclusion: these would be the more hard to bear from his perfect holiness. And did the load of imputed guilt so weigh down the soul of Him of whom it is said, He upholdeth all things by the word of his power? into what misery then must those sink whose sins are left upon their own heads! How will those escape who neglect so great salvation?
Commentary on Matthew 26:47-56
(Read Matthew 26:47-56)
No enemies are so much to be abhorred as those professed disciples that betray Christ with a kiss. God has no need of our services, much less of our sins, to bring about his purposes. Though Christ was crucified through weakness, it was voluntary weakness; he submitted to death. If he had not been willing to suffer, they could not conquer him. It was a great sin for those who had left all to follow Jesus; now to leave him for they knew not what. What folly, for fear of death to flee from Him, whom they knew and acknowledged to be the Fountain of life!
Commentary on Matthew 26:57-68
(Read Matthew 26:57-68)
Jesus was hurried into Jerusalem. It looks ill, and bodes worse, when those who are willing to be Christ's disciples, are not willing to be known to be so. Here began Peter's denying him: for to follow Christ afar off, is to begin to go back from him. It is more our concern to prepare for the end, whatever it may be, than curiously to ask what the end will be. The event is God's, but the duty is ours. Now the Scriptures were fulfilled, which said, False witnesses are risen up against me. Christ was accused, that we might not be condemned; and if at any time we suffer thus, let us remember we cannot expect to fare better than our Master. When Christ was made sin for us, he was silent, and left it to his blood to speak. Hitherto Jesus had seldom professed expressly to be the Christ, the Son of God; the tenor of his doctrine spoke it, and his miracles proved it; but now he would not omit to make an open confession of it. It would have looked like declining his sufferings. He thus confessed, as an example and encouragement to his followers, to confess him before men, whatever hazard they ran. Disdain, cruel mocking, and abhorrence, are the sure portion of the disciple as they were of the Master, from such as would buffet and deride the Lord of glory. These things were exactly foretold in the fiftieth chapter of Isaiah. Let us confess Christ's name, and bear the reproach, and he will confess us before his Father's throne.
Commentary on Matthew 26:69-75
(Read Matthew 26:69-75)
Peter's sin is truly related, for the Scriptures deal faithfully. Bad company leads to sin: those who needlessly thrust themselves into it, may expect to be tempted and insnared, as Peter. They scarcely can come out of such company without guilt or grief, or both. It is a great fault to be shy of Christ; and to dissemble our knowledge of him, when we are called to own him, is, in effect, to deny him. Peter's sin was aggravated; but he fell into the sin by surprise, not as Judas, with design. But conscience should be to us as the crowing of the cock, to put us in mind of the sins we had forgotten. Peter was thus left to fall, to abate his self-confidence, and render him more modest, humble, compassionate, and useful to others. The event has taught believers many things ever since, and if infidels, Pharisees, and hypocrites stumble at it or abuse it, it is at their peril. Little do we know how we should act in very difficult situations, if we were left to ourselves. Let him, therefore, that thinketh he standeth, take heed lest he fall; let us all distrust our own hearts, and rely wholly on the Lord. Peter wept bitterly. Sorrow for sin must not be slight, but great and deep. Peter, who wept so bitterly for denying Christ, never denied him again, but confessed him often in the face of danger. True repentance for any sin will be shown by the contrary grace and duty; that is a sign of our sorrowing not only bitterly, but sincerely.
── Matthew Henry《Concise Commentary on Matthew》
 Ye know that after two days is the feast of the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified.
After two days is the passover — The manner wherein this was celebrated gives much light to several circumstances that follow. The master of the family began the feast with a cup of wine, which having solemnly blessed, he divided among the guests, Luke 22:17. Then the supper began with the unleavened bread and bitter herbs; which when they had all tasted, one of the young persons present, according to Exodus 12:26, asked the reason of the solemnity. This introduced the showing forth, or declaration of it: in allusion to which we read of showing forth the Lord's death, 1 Corinthians 11:26. Then the master rose up and took another cup, before the lamb was tasted. After supper, he took a thin loaf or cake, which he broke and divided to all at the table, and likewise the cup, usually called the cup of thanksgiving, of which he drank first, and then all the guests. It was this bread and this cup which our Lord consecrated to be a standing memorial of his death.
 Then assembled together the chief priests, and the scribes, and the elders of the people, unto the palace of the high priest, who was called Caiaphas,
The chief priests and the scribes and the elders of the people — (Heads of families.) These together constituted the sanhedrim, or great council, which had the supreme authority, both in civil and ecclesiastical affairs.
 But they said, Not on the feast day, lest there be an uproar among the people.
But they said, Not at the feast — This was the result of human wisdom. But when Judas came they changed their purpose. So the counsel of God took place, and the true paschal Lamb was offered up on the great day of the paschal solemnity.
 Now when Jesus was in Bethany, in the house of Simon the leper,
 But when his disciples saw it, they had indignation, saying, To what purpose is this waste?
His disciples seeing it, had indignation, saying — It seems several of them were angry, and spoke, though none so warmly as Judas Iscariot.
 For ye have the poor always with you; but me ye have not always.
Ye have the poor always with you — Such is the wise and gracious providence of God, that we may have always opportunities of relieving their wants, and so laying up for ourselves treasures in heaven.
 For in that she hath poured this ointment on my body, she did it for my burial.
She hath done it for my burial — As it were for the embalming of my body. Indeed this was not her design: but our Lord puts this construction upon it, to confirm thereby what he had before said to his disciples, concerning his approaching death.
 Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached in the whole world, there shall also this, that this woman hath done, be told for a memorial of her.
This Gospel — That is, this part of the Gospel history.
 Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went unto the chief priests,
 And said unto them, What will ye give me, and I will deliver him unto you? And they covenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver.
They bargained with him for thirty pieces of silver — (About three pounds fifteen shillings sterling; or sixteen dollars sixty-seven cents,) the price of a slave, Exodus 21:32.
 Now the first day of the feast of unleavened bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare for thee to eat the passover?
 And he said, Go into the city to such a man, and say unto him, The Master saith, My time is at hand; I will keep the passover at thy house with my disciples.
The Master saith, My time is at hand — That is, the time of my suffering.
 Now when the even was come, he sat down with the twelve.
 And he answered and said, He that dippeth his hand with me in the dish, the same shall betray me.
He that dippeth his hand with me in the dish — Which it seems Judas was doing at that very time. This dish was a vessel full of vinegar, wherein they dipped their bitter herbs.
 The Son of man goeth as it is written of him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.
The Son of man goeth through sufferings to glory, as it is written of him - Yet this is no excuse for him that betrayeth him: miserable will that man be: it had been good for that man if he had not been born - May not the same be said of every man that finally perishes? But who can reconcile this, if it were true of Judas alone, with the doctrine of universal salvation?
 Then Judas, which betrayed him, answered and said, Master, is it I? He said unto him, Thou hast said.
Thou hast said — That is, it is as thou hast said.
 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.
Jesus took the bread — the bread or cake, which the master of the family used to divide among them, after they had eaten the passover. The custom our Lord now transferred to a nobler use. This bread is, that is, signifies or represents my body, according to the style of the sacred writers. Thus Genesis 40:12, The three branches are three days. Thus Galatians 4:24, St. Paul speaking of Sarah and Hagar, says, These are the two covenants. Thus in the grand type of our Lord, Exodus 12:11, God says of the paschal lamb, This is the Lord's passover. Now Christ substituting the holy communion for the passover, follows the style of the Old Testament, and uses the same expressions the Jews were wont to use in celebrating the passover.
 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it;
And he took the cup — Called by the Jews the cup of thanksgiving; which the master of the family used likewise to give to each after supper.
 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.
This is the sign of my blood, whereby the new testament or covenant is confirmed.
Which is shed for many — As many as spring from Adam.
 But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father's kingdom.
I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, till I drink it new with you in my Father's kingdom — That is, I shall taste no more wine, till I drink wine of quite another kind in the glorious kingdom of my Father. And of this you shall also partake with me.
 And when they had sung an hymn, they went out into the mount of Olives.
And when they had sung the hymn — Which was constantly sung at the close of the passover. It consisteth of six psalms, from the 113th to the 118th. Psalms 113:1 etc.
 Then saith Jesus unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad.
All ye will be offended at me — Something will happen to me, which will occasion your falling into sin by forsaking me. Zechariah 13:7.
 But after I am risen again, I will go before you into Galilee.
But notwithstanding this, after I am risen I will go before you (as a shepherd before his sheep) into Galilee. Though you forsake me, I will not for this forsake you.
 Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.
Before cock crowing thou wilt deny me thrice — That is, before three in the morning, the usual time of cock crowing: although one cock was heard to crow once, after Peter's first denial of his Lord.
 Peter said unto him, Though I should die with thee, yet will I not deny thee. Likewise also said all the disciples.
In like manner also said all the disciples — But such was the tenderness of our Lord, that he would not aggravate their sin by making any reply.
 Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder.
Then cometh Jesus to a place called Gethsemane — That is, the valley of fatness. The garden probably had its name from its soil and situation, laying in some little valley between two of those many hills, the range of which constitutes the mount of Olives. Mark 14:32; Luke 22:40.
 And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy.
And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee — To be witnesses of all; he began to be sorrowful and in deep anguish - Probably from feeling the arrows of the Almighty stick fast in his soul, while God laid on him the iniquities of us all. Who can tell what painful and dreadful sensations were then impressed on him by the immediate hand of God? The former word in the original properly signifies, to be penetrated with the most exquisite sorrow; the latter to be quite depressed, and almost overwhelmed with the load.
 And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.
And going a little farther — About a stone's cast, Luke 22:41-So that the apostles could both see and hear him still.
If it be possible, let this cup pass from me — And it did pass from him quickly. When he cried unto God with strong cries and tears, he was heard in that which he feared. God did take away the terror and severity of that inward conflict.
 Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.
The spirit — Your spirit: ye yourselves.
The flesh — Your nature. How gentle a rebuke was this, and how kind an apology! especially at a time when our Lord's own mind was so weighed down with sorrow.
 Then cometh he to his disciples, and saith unto them, Sleep on now, and take your rest: behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of man is betrayed into the hands of sinners.
Sleep on now, if you can, and take your rest - For any farther service you can be of to me.
 And while he yet spake, lo, Judas, one of the twelve, came, and with him a great multitude with swords and staves, from the chief priests and elders of the people.
 And Jesus said unto him, Friend, wherefore art thou come? Then came they, and laid hands on Jesus, and took him.
The heroic behaviour of the blessed Jesus, in the whole period of his sufferings, will be observed by every attentive eye, and felt by every pious heart: although the sacred historians, according to their usual but wonderful simplicity, make no encomiums upon it. With what composure does he go forth to meet the traitor! With what calmness receive that malignant kiss! With what dignity does he deliver himself into the hands of his enemies! Yet plainly showing his superiority over them, and even then leading as it were captivity captive!
 And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus stretched out his hand, and drew his sword, and struck a servant of the high priest's, and smote off his ear.
And one of them striking the servant of the high priest — Probably the person that seized Jesus first; Cut off his ear - Aiming, it seems, to cleave his head, but that by a secret providence interposing, he declined the blow. Mark 14:47; Luke 22:49; John 18:10.
 Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.
All they that take the sword — Without God's giving it them: without sufficient authority.
 Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels?
He will presently give me more than twelve legions of angels — The least of whom, it is probable, could overturn the earth and destroy all the inhabitants of it.
 In that same hour said Jesus to the multitudes, Are ye come out as against a thief with swords and staves for to take me? I sat daily with you teaching in the temple, and ye laid no hold on me.
 And they that had laid hold on Jesus led him away to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were assembled.
 But Peter followed him afar off unto the high priest's palace, and went in, and sat with the servants, to see the end.
But Peter followed him afar off — Variously agitated by conflicting passions; love constrained him to follow his Master; fear made him follow afar off.
And going in, sat with the servants — Unfit companions as the event showed.
 But found none: yea, though many false witnesses came, yet found they none. At the last came two false witnesses,
Yet found they none — On whose evidence they could condemn him to die.
At last came two false witnesses — Such they were, although part of what they said was true; because our Lord did not speak some of those words at all; nor any of them in this sense.
 Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.
Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man — He speaks in the third person, modestly, and yet plainly; Sitting on the right hand of power - That is, the right hand of God: And coming upon the clouds of heaven - As he is represented by Daniel, Daniel 7:13,14. Our Lord looked very unlike that person now! But nothing could be more awful, more majestic and becoming, than such an admonition in such circumstances!
 Then the high priest rent his clothes, saying, He hath spoken blasphemy; what further need have we of witnesses? behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy.
Then the high priest rent his clothes — Though the high priest was forbidden to rend his clothes (that is, his upper garment) in some cases where others were allowed to do it, Leviticus 21:10; yet in case of blasphemy or any public calamity, it was thought allowable. Caiaphas hereby expressed, in the most artful manner, his horror at hearing such grievous blasphemy.
 Then did they spit in his face, and buffeted him; and others smote him with the palms of their hands,
Then — After he had declared he was the Son of God, the sanhedrim doubtless ordered him to be carried out, while they were consulting what to do. And then it was that the soldiers who kept him began these insults upon him.
 And again he denied with an oath, I do not know the man.
He denied with an oath — To which possibly he was not unaccustomed, before our Lord called him.
 And after a while came unto him they that stood by, and said to Peter, Surely thou also art one of them; for thy speech bewrayeth thee.
Surely thou art also one of them, for thy speech discovereth thee — Malchus might have brought a stronger proof than this. But such is the overruling providence of God, that the world, in the height of their zeal, commonly catch hold of the very weakest of all arguments against the children of God.
 Then began he to curse and to swear, saying, I know not the man. And immediately the cock crew.
Then began he to curse and to swear — Having now quite lost the reins, the government of himself.
── John Wesley《Explanatory Notes on Matthew》
Chapter 26. Gethsemane
I Will Never Stumble
I. Test the people
II. The Feast of Unleavened Bread
III. Final Rejection of the King
── Chih-Hsin Chang《An Outline of The New Testament》
The Lord's Supper (26:26-30)
1. During His last week, Jesus observed the Passover for the last
a. The Passover was a Jewish feast, observed annually - Deu 16:1-8
Israel's deliverance from - Exo 12:1-28,43-49 Egypt
2. This last Passover was very special to Jesus - Lk 22:14-15
a. His knew His death was imminent ("before I suffer")
b. He was with those he loved - Jn 13:1 ("He loved them to the end")
3. On this occasion Jesus instituted what we call the Lord's Supper...
a. Read our text - Mt 26:26-30
b. As recorded by Luke, Jesus wanted His disciples to do this in His
memory - Lk 22:19
4. The importance of properly observing the Lord's Supper should not be
a. The church at
was guilty of abusing it - 1 Co 11:20-22 Corinth
b. Such misuse has serious consequences - 1 Co 11:27,29
[That we might observe the Supper properly, to receive its blessings
rather than condemnation, let's use this opportunity to review what is
revealed about the purpose and observance of "The Lord's Supper"...]
I. THE MEANING OF THE SUPPER
A. IT IS A MEMORIAL...
1. Note Paul's account as given by the Lord Himself - 1 Co 11:
a. We eat the bread in memory of His body
b. We drink the cup (fruit of the vine) in memory of His blood
2. We therefore commemorate the death of Jesus on the cross
- Mt 26:28
a. Whose death make the new covenant possible - He 9:16
b. Whose blood was shed for the remission of sins - Ep 1:7
-- As the Passover was a memorial commemorating
through the blood of the lambs on the Egypt
door post, so the Supper is a memorial of our Lord's death who
makes our deliverance from the bondage of sin possible
B. IT IS A PROCLAMATION...
1. We proclaim our faith in the efficacy of the Lord's death
- 1 Co 11:
a. That His death was indeed for our sins
b. If we didn't believe it, why keep the Supper?
2. We also proclaim our faith in the Lord's return - 1 Co 11:26b
a. For it is to be done "till He comes"
b. If we don't believe He is coming, then why keep the Supper?
-- Thus the Lord's Supper looks forward as well as backward, and
will ever be observed by His disciples who trust in His
redemption and anticipate His return!
C. IT IS A COMMUNION...
1. A fellowship or sharing in the blood of Christ - 1 Co 10:
a. As we partake, we commune with the blood of Christ
b. Perhaps in the sense of reinforcing blessings we enjoy
through the blood of Christ - cf. 1 Jn 1:7,9
2. A fellowship or sharing in the body of Christ - 1 Co 10:16b-17
a. As we partake, we commune with the body of Christ
b. Perhaps in the sense of reinforcing fellowship together in
the body of Christ (i.e., the church), as we break bread
["The Lord's Supper", which is also called "Communion" and "Breaking of
Bread" (cf. 1 Co 10:16; Ac 2:42; 20:7) certainly has great significance
and should not be taken lightly. We should therefore consider what the
Scriptures reveal about...]
II. THE OBSERVANCE OF THE SUPPER
A. TO BE DONE WITH REVERENCE...
1. That is, "in a worthy manner" (NKJV) - 1 Co 11:27,29
a. The KJV says "worthily", which some have misunderstood
b. It is an adverb, describing how we take it, not whether we
are worthy (none are truly worthy)
2. With respect for the supreme price Jesus paid for our sins
a. Cf. the cruel torture and humiliation of His physical body
b. Cf. the spiritual anguish suffered as the Son of God bore
the punishment for our sins ("My God, My God, Why have You
forsaken Me?" - Mt 27:46)
3. Failure to observe with proper reverence brings condemnation
- 1 Co 11:27,29
a. One will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord
b. One will eats and drinks judgment to himself
-- To make light of this memorial puts one in the same category
as those who mocked Him as He hung on the cross!
B. TO BE DONE WITH SELF-EXAMINATION...
1. Such as reflecting upon one's spiritual condition - 1 Co 11:28
2. Are we living in a manner that shows appreciation for His
a. By accepting the grace of God in our lives? - 2 Co 5:18-6:1
b. By living for Jesus who died for us? - 2 Co 5:14-15; Ga
3. Or are we by willful sinning, guilty of having:
a. "trampled the Son of God underfoot"?
b. "counted the blood by which [we were] sanctified a common
c. "insulted the Spirit of grace"? - cf. He 10:26-29
4. Do we, by refusing to repent of our sins, "crucify again for
themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an shame"? - cf. He
-- In one sense, the Supper is a very private matter between a
Christian and his or her God; a time to reflect the past and
to resolve for the future
C. TO BE DONE WITH OTHER CHRISTIANS...
1. There is ample indication the Supper is designed to be a
a. The disciples "came together" to break bread - Ac 20:7
b. When they came together, they were to "wait for one
another" - 1 Co 11:33
c. Partaking together of "one bread", they demonstrate they
are "one bread and one body" - 1 Co 10:16
-- We commune not just with the Lord, but with one another
2. For this reason I personally question such practices as:
a. Observing the Supper by one's self when camping or
b. Observing the Supper on Sunday night when just one or a
couple of people in the congregation are partaking
c. Taking the elements to the sick or shut-in who were unable
-- While such issues may fall in the realm of "opinion", let's
not forget that the Supper builds fellowship with one
another as well as with the Lord!
D. TO BE DONE OFTEN...
1. The Biblical evidence is that it was done weekly...
a. Christians came together on the first day of the week to
"break bread" - Ac 20:7
b. Other indications of a weekly observance:
1) The church at
was coming together to eat the Corinth
Lord's Supper, though they were abusing it - cf. 1 Co
2) Instructions concerning the collection suggest their
coming together was on the first day of the week - cf.
1 Co 16:1-2
c. Following the divinely approved example of Christians in
the Bible, we know God approves of a weekly observance on
the first day of the week
2. The earliest historical evidence outside the Bible confirms
the day and frequency...
a. The Didache (ca.
95 A.D.) indicates Christians were to come
together on the first day of the week to break bread
- Didache 14:1
b. Justin Martyr (ca.
150 A.D.) records how Christians
assembled on Sunday and partook of the Supper - Apology I,
3. Some believe that a weekly observance diminishes the
importance of the Supper
a. Which is why some do it monthly, quarterly, or annually
b. But does the frequent practice of:
1) Assembling diminishing its value and importance?
2) Singing praises and offering prayers devalue their
3) Preaching and studying God's Word decrease their
significance to our lives?
-- Our spiritual lives are dependent upon the value and benefits
of our Lord's death on the cross; a weekly observance of the
memorial helps us to live appreciatively and accordingly!
1. "The Lord's Supper" is a very special memorial of His death for our
a. Instituted by Jesus Himself, He asked His disciples to do it in
b. Jesus told His disciples that He would not eat of the elements
1) "...that day when I drink it new with you in My Father's
kingdom." - Mt 26:29
2) "...that day when I drink it new in the
." - Mk kingdomof God
3) "...it be fulfilled in the
." - Lk 22:16 kingdomof God
shall come." - Lk 22:18 kingdomof God
c. There are two plausible explanations for what Jesus means:
1) Some think it refers to Jesus having fellowship with us as we
observe the Lord's Supper in the church, which is His kingdom
- cf. 1 Co 10:16-17
2) Others propose that it refers to the special communion we will
have with Jesus in His Father's kingdom, spoken often in terms
of a heavenly feast - cf. Isa 25:6-8; Mt 8:11; 22:2-14; Lk
14:15-24; Re 19:9
2. The first Christians "continued steadfastly" in its observance...
a. Just as they did in the apostles' doctrine, fellowship and prayer
- Ac 2:42
b. Coming together on the first day of the week for that very
purpose - Ac 20:7
3. Christians today should never lose sight of its significance...
a. A constant reminder of the sacrifice Jesus paid for our sins
b. A communion or sharing of the body and blood of the Lord
c. A time for self-examination and re-dedication of our service to
d. A means for building fellowship with one another in the body of
May such thoughts encourage us to never neglect opportunities we have
to observe the Lord's Supper, but to continue steadfastly and in so
doing "proclaim the Lord's death till He comes."
(26:36-46) GardenOf Gethsemane
1. The last supper of Jesus with His disciples was finished...
a. He predicted the betrayal by Judas - Mt 26:21-25
b. He observed the Passover, instituting the Lord's Supper - Mt 26:
b. He then foretold Peter's denial of Him, as they made their way to
Mount of Olives- Mt 26:31-35
2. Jesus and His disciples then came to a place called
a. A garden outside the city, across the Kidron brook and on the
Mount of Olives
b. It's name means "olive press", and was possibly a remote walled
c. A place where Jesus often went with His disciples - Jn 18:1-2
3. Note the contrast between the Garden of Eden, and the Garden of
a. In the first garden, the first man fell by yielding to temptation
b. In the second garden, the Second Man (cf. 1 Co 15:47) conquered
by yielding to the will of God
" was a place of victory for Jesus (and GardenOf Gethsemane
consequently for us as well). But the victory did not come easy, as we
notice first of all that...]
I. THE GARDEN WAS
A PLACEOF SUFFERING
A. WHERE JESUS EXPERIENCED GREAT DISTRESS...
1. He went to pray, accompanied only by Peter, James, and John
- Mt 26:36-37
2. Before He began praying, He was "deeply distressed" - Mt 26:37
3. Mark records that He was "troubled and deeply distressed" - Mk
4. Later, Luke records that He was "in agony", and His sweat
became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground
- Lk 22:44
5. He was likely troubled for He knew that His hour had come
- cf. Jn 12:27
a. He knew what was imminent, for He had told His disciples
three times - Mt 16:21; 17:22-23; 20:17-19
b. There was not only physical pain to endure, but also the
burden of our sins and separation from His Father as He
bore our sins on the cross! - cf. Isa 53:6; Mt 27:46
B. WHERE JESUS ENDURED INTENSE SORROW...
1. He described Himself as "exceedingly sorrowful, even to death"
- Mt 26:38
2. The writer of Hebrews refers to His "vehement cries and tears"
- He 5:7
3. Again, His grief and sorrow was partly due to the fact that He
was taking upon Himself our own griefs and sorrows! - cf. Isa
C. WHERE JESUS ENCOUNTERED SOLEMN LONELINESS...
1. He wanted His closest disciples to watch with Him - Mt 26:
a. Those who had been with Him from the beginning - Mt 4:18-22
b. Those who were privy to one of His greatest miracles - Mk
c. Those who saw Him transfigured on the mountain - Mt 17:1-2
d. Including the disciple "whom He loved" - Jn 13:23; 19:26;
2. Yet after each episode of praying, He found them sleeping - Mt
a. When He desired fellowship for comfort, there was none to
b. The Psalmist foretold this would happen - cf. Psa 69:20
[Alone in His distress and sorrow, our Lord found "The Garden Of
Gethsemane" to be a place of great suffering for Him. Then something
happened. Before He left to face the mob led by Judas to arrest Him,
Jesus found that...]
II. THE GARDEN WAS A PLACE OF STRENGTH
A. WHEN JESUS EXPRESSED AGONIZING PRAYER...
1. The agony in His prayer is:
a. Seen by His posture: "He...fell on His face" - Mt 26:39
b. Heard in His words: "O My Father, if it is possible, let
this cup pass from Me" - Mt 26:39,42,44
2. It was "godly fear" Jesus expressed, and for such His prayer
was heard - He 5:7
a. Not that the cup (of suffering) was removed
b. But that He would be able to drink it
B. WHEN JESUS EXTENDED ENTIRE RESIGNATION...
1. As evidenced by His words:
a. "Not as I will, but as You will." - Mt 26:39
b. "if this cup cannot pass away from Me unless I drink it,
Your will be done." - Mt 26:42
2. When man first said "My will, not Thine be done..."
a. It opened the flood gate of sin
b. It turned man out of the Paradise of God
3. But when Jesus said "Not as I will, but as You will..."
a. Victory over sin and access to the Tree of Life became
b. For it prepared Jesus to go to the cross to make it
C. WHEN JESUS ENJOYED SPECIAL COMFORT...
1. Jesus received an answer to His prayer - cf. Lk 22:43
a. Not the answer He requested (let this cup pass from Me)
b. But strength from an angel!
2. Like the apostle Paul would pray later - cf. 2 Co 12:7-10
a. Asking the Lord to remove his thorn in the flesh
b. Receiving an answer different than requested, but more than
sufficient to meet the need!
D. WHEN JESUS EVINCED RENEWED RESOLVE...
1. Strengthened, Jesus was ready to face the hour at hand - Mt
2. He was ready to meet His betrayer and those with him - Mt 26:
1. So "The Garden Of Gethsemane" was a place of both suffering and
a. Jesus entered the garden suffering
b. He left the garden strengthened in His resolve
2. Notice what turned the place of suffering into a place of strength:
a. Prayer that is fervent and persistent
b. Prayer in which one submits to the will of God
c. Prayer in which one is strengthened
d. Prayer that enables one to face the cup of life given them
3. There will be times when we must enter our "Garden of Gethsemane"...
a. Times of distress, sorrow, loneliness
b. But such times can also be a time of comfort and strength
-- Provided we spend them in prayer, and be willing to accept the
Jesus found prayer to be the key for turning a garden of suffering into
a garden of strength. As Christians we have a similar blessing in
"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and
supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known
to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding,
will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus." - Ph 4:6-7
May we never neglect to utilize this wonderful gift, especially since
we now have Jesus Himself to intercede on our behalf!
"Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed
through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast
our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot
sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted
as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to
the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace
to help in time of need." - He 4:14-16
"Therefore He is also able to save to the uttermost those who
come to God through Him, since He always lives to make
intercession for them." - He 7:25
The Betrayal Of Jesus (26:47-50)
1. Certainly one of the saddest moments in the life of Jesus was His
betrayal by Judas...
a. One of Jesus' closest disciples, even one of His twelve apostles
- Mt 26:47-50
b. Who had been privileged to a part of Jesus' ministry here on
earth - Ac 1:17
2. What led Judas to betray his Lord and Savior? How could one who had
been with Jesus...
a. Seen His miracles
b. Heard His teachings
...betray Him with a kiss?
3. What about us, who claim to be Jesus' disciples today?
a. Could we be guilty of betraying Jesus in some way?
b. Are there things that misled Judas that could have a similar
effect on us?
[What might we learn from "The Betrayal Of Jesus"? Lest we follow the
same path of Judas, let's reflect for a few moments on what we can
glean from the Scriptures...]
I. JESUS WAS BETRAYED BY A CLOSE FRIEND
A. JUDAS WAS NO STRANGER TO JESUS...
1. As already mentioned, he was one of the apostles - Mt 10:2-4
2. He was among those whom Jesus loved - Jn 13:1
3. Yet as prophesied, Jesus was betrayed by "a familiar friend"
- Psa 41:9
B. BEING CLOSE TO JESUS IS NO GUARANTEE...
1. Just being His disciples is no assurance we could not betray
2. Like several of the churches in Asia Minor, we could...
a. Leave our first love - Re 2:4-5
b. Begin to tolerate false doctrine - Re 2:14-16
c. Permit false teachers to spread their doctrines - Re 2:20
d. Fail to perfect our works, and not be watchful - Re 3:1-3
e. Become lukewarm - Re 3:15-16
3. Yes, we can betray Jesus by denying Him who bought us - 2 Pe
[Therefore we need to heed Jesus' admonition to be "faithful unto
death" (Re 2:10), and not assume that close proximity to Jesus in the
past guarantees faithfulness in the future.]
II. JESUS WAS BETRAYED BY A LOVER OF MONEY
A. MONEY WAS A PROBLEM FOR JUDAS...
1. He often pilfered from the money box - Jn 12:4-6
2. The opportunity to make money led him to betray Jesus - Mt 26:
B. MONEY CAN BE A PROBLEM FOR US...
1. The deceitfulness of riches can render us unfruitful - Mt 13:
2. The desire for riches and the love of money can lead us to
stray from the faith and drown in destruction and perdition
- 1 Ti 6:9-10
3. The Laodiceans' preoccupation with wealth made them lukewarm
- Re 3:16-17
[Could we be guilty of betraying Jesus by our desire for riches,
letting such things take precedent over our service to God and His
III. JESUS WAS BETRAYED BY A SHOW OF AFFECTION
A. JUDAS BETRAYED JESUS WITH A KISS...
1. He could have simply pointed...perhaps by kissing he sought to
soften the blow of betrayal - Mt 26:48-49
2. Jesus noted the obvious contradiction - Lk 22:47-48
B. DISPLAYS OF AFFECTION DON'T ENSURE FAITHFULNESS...
1. Many people are very emotional in their religion
a. As displayed in their worship
b. Believing it to be evidence of being "Spirit-filled"
2. Yet emotions alone are not a reliable guide
a. They can easily mislead us - cf. Pro 16:25; Jer 10:23; 17:9
b. They are often present in the unstable believer - Mt 13:
3. This is not to discount the place and value of emotions
a. We are to love God with all our heart and with all our mind
- Mt 22:37-38
b. The Spirit does produce fruit in our lives that affects our
emotions - Ga 5:22-23
b. But we must keep them in the proper order:
1) Our emotions must come from faith, not faith coming from
2) Otherwise we are led by emotionalism, not faith
-- And true faith comes from the Word of God - Ro 10:17;
[If we believe that displays of affection in our religion can make up
for our failure to heed God's Word, we deceive ourselves and betray
Jesus in the process!]
IV. JESUS WAS BETRAYED BY A MISTAKEN DISCIPLE
A. JUDAS MISTOOK THE CONSEQUENCES OF HIS ACTION...
1. He evidently didn't think Jesus would be condemned - Mt 27:3-4
2. This has prompted some to think that Judas was motivated by
more than money
a. That perhaps his betrayal would force Jesus to act, show
His true power
b. That in such a way it would demonstrate who Jesus truly was
B. WE CAN BE GUILTY OF MISTAKEN SERVICE...
1. Thinking our service is acceptable, when it is not - Mt 7:
2. Thinking we can improve on God's way, when we can't know what
He wants unless He reveals it - Isa 55:8-9
3. We need to head the Preacher's advice - cf. Ecc 5:1-2
a. Come to hear and do what He says
b. Not presume to know what pleases God and offer what we
think is best
[In our zeal, we may be guilty of acting on mistaken knowledge (cf. Ro
10:1-3). Dare we possibly betray Jesus by presuming we know what is
according to His will and plan?]
V. JESUS WAS BETRAYED BY AN OVERWROUGHT FOLLOWER
A. JUDAS REACTED TO HIS SIN THE WRONG WAY...
1. He was overcome with grief - Mt 27:3
2. He took the wrong course of action and hung himself - Mt 27:5
B. WE CAN REACT TO OUR SINS THE SAME WAY...
1. There are two kinds of sorrow - 2 Co 7:10
a. Sorrow of the world that produces death
b. Godly sorrow that produces repentance
-- The first is sorrow where one is preoccupied with self; the
other is sorrow due to sinning against God
2. It is natural to be sorrowful for our sins
a. But we should not wallow in our grief
b. But repent, as did Peter who denied Christ
3. Paul provides another example of one who did not let his sins
of the past hinder his service in the present
a. He focused on God's grace which gave him another chance
- 1 Co 15:9-10
b. He directed his attention on striving for the upward call
of God - Ph 3:12-14
1. While Jesus was betrayed by all these things, let's not forget the
influence of Satan...
a. Satan used Judas to betray Jesus - Lk 22:3-4
b. Satan put it in Judas' heart to betray Jesus - Jn 13:2
-- For this reason Jesus referred to Judas as "a devil" - Jn 6:70-71
2. Yet how did Satan influence Judas? By some of the very things we've
a. Through his love of money
b. Through his emotionalism
c. Through his mistaken ideas
d. Through his preoccupation with self
-- Even Peter was influenced by Satan through some of these things
(cf. Mt 16:23)
And so while we may decry the treachery of Judas, we should humbly
learn from his mistakes, taking to heart the words of Peter:
"Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks
about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist
him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings
are experienced by your brotherhood in the world."
- 1 Pe 5:9-10
Peter's Denial Of Jesus (26:69-75)
1. Among the things Jesus suffered, was the indignity of Peter's
a. Three times, with increasing intensity, Peter denied knowing
Jesus - Mt 26:69-75
b. Peter denied knowing Jesus, despite being with Jesus:
1) From the beginning of His earthly ministry - Mt 4:17-19
2) At the healing of his own mother-in-law - Mt 8:14-15
3) On the Sea of Galilee, walking on the water - Mt 14:22-33
4) On the mount, seeing Jesus with Moses and Elijah - Mt 17:1-13
2. How did Peter come to deny his Lord and Savior?
a. What forces were at work, that led to his cowardly deed?
b. Might they be forces we face today, encouraging us to do the
[From "Peter's Denial Of Jesus", there are important lessons to be
gleaned. Indeed, Peter himself can help us to avoid making the mistakes
he made when he writes as one who knows the dangers before us. For
example, we note first of all that...]
I. PETER WAS BETRAYED BY PRIDE
A. HE BOASTED HE WOULD NEVER DENY JESUS...
1. Proudly proclaiming that even if all left Jesus, not him!
- Mt 26:31-33
2. In so doing, Peter took the first step in falling away - Pro
3. We can also be overconfident in our service to God - cf. 1 Co
B. PETER LATER COMMANDED HUMILITY...
1. To be clothed with humility - 1 Pe 5:5
2. To humble ourselves before God - 1 Pe 5:6
[Peter learned the hard way about the danger of pride. Will we learn
from the mistake of Peter, and value the importance of humility? Next,
II. PETER WAS BESIEGED BY LAZINESS
A. HE KEPT FALLING ASLEEP...
1. At a time when he needed to be watchful - Mt 26:36-46
2. His laziness therefore led to lack of preparation
3. The same thing can happen to us!
a. Without diligent preparation, we too can be unprepared
- cf. Lk 21:34-36
b. More often than not, we gradually "drift away" because we
are too lazy to "give the more earnest heed" - cf. He 2:1-3
B. PETER LATER ENJOINED DILIGENCE...
1. Commanding vigilant resistance against the devil - 1 Pe 5:8-9
2. Calling for diligence that we might:
a. Grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus - 2 Pe 1:5,10
b. Be found in peace, without spot and blameless - 2 Pe 3:14
[Do we allow simple laziness to keep us from careful preparation? Do we
fail to attend services, study God's Word, or even pray, because of
laziness? If so, how can we hope to stand up for Jesus when put to the
test? As we continue, we observe that...]
III. PETER WAS BESET BY COWARDICE
A. HE FOLLOWED JESUS AT A DISTANCE...
1. Peter still followed Jesus - Mt 26:58
2. But now that Jesus was unpopular...
a. He stays far enough away so not to be identified with Him
b. He was unprepared to face the challenge of ridicule and
3. Might we be guilty of trying to follow Jesus, but with
a. Ashamed to be seen carrying a Bible?
b. Ashamed to be seen giving thanks?
c. Ashamed to be seen with other Christians?
B. PETER LATER EXHORTED GLORIFYING GOD...
1. Charging us not to be ashamed, but to glorify God - 1 Pe 4:16
2. Thinking not of what things mean to us, but what they mean to
God! - cf. Mt 5:16
[With cowardice keeping him at a distance from his Lord, Peter was a
prime candidate for succumbing to what came next...]
IV. PETER WAS BELEAGUERED BY WORLDLINESS
A. HE WAS INFLUENCED BY THE WORLD...
1. By sitting with the servants of the High Priest, and warming
himself by their fire - Mt 26:58; Mk 14:54
2. Ashamed to be seen with Christ, it was easy to mingle with
those of the world and enjoy their comforts
3. But one cannot be "comforted by the fire" of the world, and
not be "burned"!
a. E.g., close contact with things that can harm has an effect
- cf. Pro 6:27-29
b. So we cannot flirt with the world and walk away untouched
- 1 Co 15:33
B. PETER LATER CALLED FOR US TO BE OTHER-WORLDLY...
1. To live as sojourners and pilgrims, abstaining from fleshly
lusts and with honorable conduct among the nations - 1 Pe 2:
2. To look for that new heavens and new earth, being diligent to
be found by Christ in peace, without spot and blameless - 2 Pe
1. When Peter concluded his second epistle, he did so with a warning...
a. To beware lest you fall from your own steadfastness - 2 Pe 3:17
b. To grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ - 2 Pe 3:18
2. These admonitions come from one who was well qualified to speak...
a. For he knew how easy it was to fall through such things as:
b. But he also knew how to grow in grace through such things as:
3) Glorifying God
4) Living as strangers and sojourners
Yes, we know that Peter, though he denied Jesus three times and wept
bitterly, received grace when forgiven by Jesus and permitted to
fulfill his role as an apostle (cf. Jn 21:15-17).
If we have been guilty of letting our Lord down, look to Him for the
grace to repent and grow that only He can bestow!