In this message, we will dive into the Word of God and see how things went down when Jesus was captured by Judas and the officers of the chief priests and Pharisees. In this examination of God’s Word, we will go to John, chapter 18. This is where we will be looking into what happened, the day that when Jesus was captured. And to do this, we will read and study verses 1 through 12 in detail. Truly, the story of Jesus’s capture, before being prosecuted and then put to death on a cross is very interesting indeed. Why is this? It is because Jesus’s mighty power is made known through His Words. When Jesus answered the officer’s question, everyone that was there, fell backward on their faces. Though the officers were there to capture Jesus, from this experience, they would never forget the day that Jesus spoke to them. Let us now read from verses 1 through 6 to see what happened from the words of the Bible…
John 18:1-6 (KJV)
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.
Before going into detail on verses 1, through 6, let us recall what happened in chapter 17. Jesus, our Lord, had just prayed the most amazing prayer to His Father. The disciples must have been refreshed and comforted very much so by His prayer. It was after this prayer, that led up to this moment. So after praying, Jesus went with His disciples on a small journey to the garden of Gethsemane. What he prayed and did in this garden is recorded in Matthew 26:36-45 and Luke 22:39-46. Now for the sake of this message, we will follow the story line of John, even though I do recommend you clicking on the links above, so you get more information about what happened in the garden. It was while Jesus was in this place that He knew what was to happen to Him. He knew Judas would be coming with the officers very soon, in order to betray and capture Him. So as predicted, Judas did come with the offers with lanterns, torches and their weapons. They were ready to take Jesus, even by force, if needed.
Now, the amazing part of this whole ordeal with Judas and the officers is what they were to witness, after meeting up with Jesus. As the soldiers entered into the camp, where the disciples and Jesus were at, they didn’t have to say a word. This is because Jesus went up to them, in order to great them. He was not afraid and, therefore, rushed up to them. This was the kind of person our Lord was on earth and still is in heaven. If people want His attention, He rushes in to great them. This is what happens now, as well. Speaking of this moment, He was not afraid, but was ready to take on anything. So he asked them, “whom seek ye?” He knew why they were there but wanted to hear it from them. So “they answered him, Jesus of Nazareth”. This is when Jesus said unto them, “I am he” and the power of God was made manifest by those words. Where “as soon then as he had said unto them, I am he, they went backward, and fell to the ground.” What a miracle this was, to see God’s power, for everyone that was in attendance.
Surely, the Lord Jesus is powerful. And as John, chapter 17, described, this power comes because the Father is in Him. Now, after the men had all fallen to the ground, they must have been in a state of shock for a while. So while Judas and the men were getting back on their feet, Jesus asked them again, “whom seek ye? And they said, Jesus of Nazareth.” This is when Jesus answered the same way, “I am he”. He had nothing to hide. So after hearing this, the guards proceeded to take Jesus away. They also gave into his wishes of allowing His disciples to go away unharmed. However, things got out of control quickly when Peter got upset and cut off a soldiers ear. However, Jesus being so loving and kind, healed this man (Luke 22:49-51) and told Peter to put away his sword. Peter then obeyed and the disciples watched as the officers took Jesus away. This can be found in verses 7 through 12. Please read and pray about these verses. Think about Jesus and His love for us. He went forth as a lamb to the slaughter for us.
John 18:7-12 (KJV)
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.
10 Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus.
11 Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?
12 Then the band and the captain and officers of the Jews took Jesus, and bound him,
Let us pray:
Oh Lord, what I’ve read in the Bible is powerful. Surely, Your power is manifested in every word. Through Your words, people are convicted of their sins and are brought to You, in order to be cleansed. Your words have such power to prick us to the heart and lead us away from wickedness and instead, follow You, Lord. I know this to be true, for I have felt Your power in my life many times. I was once overpowered by Satan and the darkness therein, but after much prayer, Your presence came over me. It was in this very hour that Your mighty power was made manifest in me and my bonds were broken. For nothing could change my wicked heart to live righteously, until You came into my life. That is when every chain was broken. I was a slave to sin, but You have changed everything. Through Your great Name, sin no longer has power over me, for I am built in Your armor. The Bible has fortified me and I am strong because of what I read, what I know and what is implanted on my heart. Surely, I am guided through the storms of life because Your Words are lamp unto my feet. And through prayer, my beliefs are fortified like iron. I am not led astray, for You are leading me, every step of the way. You have given me strength and boldness in this wicked world we live in. Thank You God. I am so blessed by You, my King. I love You with all my heart and give You all the glory. I worship You Lord. Amen.