New International Version (NIV)

Jesus Arrested

1 When he had finished praying, Jesus left with his disciples and crossed the Kidron Valley. On the other side there was a garden, and he and his disciples went into it.

2 Now Judas, who betrayed him, knew the place, because Jesus had often met there with his disciples. 3 So Judas came to the garden, guiding a detachment of soldiers and some officials from the chief priests and the Pharisees. They were carrying torches, lanterns and weapons.

4 Jesus, knowing all that was going to happen to him, went out and asked them, “Who is it you want?”

5 “Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied.

“I am he,” Jesus said. (And Judas the traitor was standing there with them.) 6 When Jesus said, “I am he,” they drew back and fell to the ground.

7 Again he asked them, “Who is it you want?”

“Jesus of Nazareth,” they said.

8 Jesus answered, “I told you that I am he. If you are looking for me, then let these men go.” 9 This happened so that the words he had spoken would be fulfilled: “I have not lost one of those you gave me.”

10 Then Simon Peter, who had a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant, cutting off his right ear. (The servant’s name was Malchus.)

11 Jesus commanded Peter, “Put your sword away! Shall I not drink the cup the Father has given me?”

12 Then the detachment of soldiers with its commander and the Jewish officials arrested Jesus. They bound him 13 and brought him first to Annas, who was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, the high priest that year. 14 Caiaphas was the one who had advised the Jewish leaders that it would be good if one man died for the people.

Peter’s First Denial

15 Simon Peter and another disciple were following Jesus. Because this disciple was known to the high priest, he went with Jesus into the high priest’s courtyard, 16 but Peter had to wait outside at the door. The other disciple, who was known to the high priest, came back, spoke to the servant girl on duty there and brought Peter in.

17 “You aren’t one of this man’s disciples too, are you?” she asked Peter.

He replied, “I am not.”

18 It was cold, and the servants and officials stood around a fire they had made to keep warm. Peter also was standing with them, warming himself.

The High Priest Questions Jesus

19 Meanwhile, the high priest questioned Jesus about his disciples and his teaching.

20 “I have spoken openly to the world,” Jesus replied. “I always taught in synagogues or at the temple, where all the Jews come together. I said nothing in secret. 21 Why question me? Ask those who heard me. Surely they know what I said.”

22 When Jesus said this, one of the officials nearby slapped him in the face. “Is this the way you answer the high priest?” he demanded.

23 “If I said something wrong,” Jesus replied, “testify as to what is wrong. But if I spoke the truth, why did you strike me?” 24 Then Annas sent him bound to Caiaphas the high priest.

Peter’s Second and Third Denials

25 Meanwhile, Simon Peter was still standing there warming himself. So they asked him, “You aren’t one of his disciples too, are you?”

He denied it, saying, “I am not.”

26 One of the high priest’s servants, a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, challenged him, “Didn’t I see you with him in the garden?” 27 Again Peter denied it, and at that moment a rooster began to crow.

Jesus Before Pilate

28 Then the Jewish leaders took Jesus from Caiaphas to the palace of the Roman governor. By now it was early morning, and to avoid ceremonial uncleanness they did not enter the palace, because they wanted to be able to eat the Passover. 29 So Pilate came out to them and asked, “What charges are you bringing against this man?”

30 “If he were not a criminal,” they replied, “we would not have handed him over to you.”

31 Pilate said, “Take him yourselves and judge him by your own law.”

“But we have no right to execute anyone,” they objected. 32 This took place to fulfill what Jesus had said about the kind of death he was going to die.

33 Pilate then went back inside the palace, summoned Jesus and asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?”

34 “Is that your own idea,” Jesus asked, “or did others talk to you about me?”

35 “Am I a Jew?” Pilate replied. “Your own people and chief priests handed you over to me. What is it you have done?”

36 Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place.”

37 “You are a king, then!” said Pilate.

Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”

38 “What is truth?” retorted Pilate. With this he went out again to the Jews gathered there and said, “I find no basis for a charge against him. 39 But it is your custom for me to release to you one prisoner at the time of the Passover. Do you want me to release ‘the king of the Jews’?”

40 They shouted back, “No, not him! Give us Barabbas!” Now Barabbas had taken part in an uprising.





by Lance Bane

In John 13, we see behind the veil of Judas’ heart and we learn that the devil had prompted him to betray Jesus. In John 18, that betrayal moves from the dark, hidden places of Judas’ heart out into the open of the Garden of Gethsemane. This garden was a familiar place for prayer, so Judas knew Jesus would be there. Judas arrives with a group of Roman soldiers and identifies Jesus for them. Peter draws a sword to stop what was foreordained, but he was quickly corrected by Jesus. Jesus is arrested and taken before the religious leaders. When the trial begins, Peter begins to fulfill what Jesus said in John 18. Peter denies Jesus three times while Jesus is being questioned and beaten. The chapter ends with the emergence of Barabbas, the criminal who would later be released.

It’s impossible to read the bible, to insert yourself into these stories, to look at them and not feel the emotion, the confusion, the uncertainty of what was happening. Jesus had warned His disciples of this, but they did not understand. Now they are living it, and the lack of understanding has moved from their minds to their emotions. It was in the place of prayer that the betrayal began. What a paradox! Jesus had taught (Matthew 6) that "when we pray, we are to enter our room, close the door and pray to our Father, who is unseen”. The Garden of Gethsemane was Jesus’ room for prayer - a place of intimacy, a place of safety, a place for loving God and being loved by God was now being violated by a heart that was seduced by evil.  

How many times in our own places of prayer have we been seduced by distraction, by unholy temptations, by performance and we find our hearts being arrested by other things or other priorities? It’s not uncommon and it’s not a situation that paralyzes us. However, it’s not a situation we should ignore. I want to encourage you today, to know that the Garden of Gethsemane is a place of testing, a place of surrender and a place of fulfilling God’s will.  

  1. When you spend time in prayer today, have a paper and pen handy. When you think of something you need to do or someone you need to meet, write it down, and then return to the place of prayer.
  2. As you spend time in prayer, be aware of your heart and what surfaces. If Holy Spirit highlights something negative, give it to God and let Him have it.  
  3. Confess your surrender to God today and commit your life to Him again.
  4. Identify your opportunity in the place of prayer, even if the opportunity is masked behind something you don’t understand.




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