LOOKING TO PRAISE AND WORSHIP JESUS THE CHRIST, THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD. 18 No man has ever seen God at any time; the only unique Son, or the only begotten God, Who is in the bosom [in the intimate presence] of the Father, He has declared Him [He has revealed Him and brought Him out where He can be seen; He has interpreted Him and He has made Him known].

Monday, February 11, 2008

In the Silence

And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled.
(Matthew 26:37 – ESV)

Imagine the scene that night in Gethsemane. The great swelling crowds that had come to follow Christ had turned away (John 6). Some that had stayed were now turned against, and they were coming to arrest and eventually kill Him. Of the twelve disciples, eight were near the entrance to the garden, but they were perhaps unaware of the great spiritual battle that was unfolding. They knew nothing of the event, their Master and the temptation, the prayer, the great drops of blood falling on the ground from our Savior’s brow, evidence of the most extreme spiritual crisis of all time taking place. In the silence the battle of the ages raged on.

Now the inner circle, the three, Peter, James, and John, they had been taken further into the silence by our Lord, deeper into the mystery of the garden. They were witness to the troubled, distressed spirit of the One whom they had known as the Prince of Peace. Suddenly they also knew Him as the Man of Sorrows. Jesus told them to watch and pray, knowing that they, too, were about to enter their greatest hour of temptation.

It might have seemed like any other quiet night, where Jesus had told His disciples to pray, and it didn’t seem like there was much activity, but the silence of the night betrayed the violence of the fight. The human crowds were gone, but the hosts of heaven looked on as the sinless Son of God faced His greatest hour of need. In the silence of that night the greatest temptation and spiritual battle of all time took place.

The road to the cross leads through Gethsemane. It can be in those moments of silence that destiny is determined. It may seem as if there is no action going on in your life, within your family, at your church, but indeed, it is in these moments that all hell is lining up against you to try and take you down, when you are in the silence, without a clue or a care. Jesus is agonizing and everyone else is unaware. They don’t think they or you are at the crossroads to their cross, they think all is well, or all of this must be stopped or that they are simply in a holding pattern, awaiting instructions at the gate to the garden. Or they have followed Him right to the edge, but are falling asleep even as He is interceding for them. How often we don’t realize that we are vulnerable, or that we are about to enter in to great trial and need to be watching and praying.

We don’t know the exact timing of when Christ is coming, the disciples had been told by Christ Himself that He was to be betrayed and killed, and would rise again, but they didn’t expect what would take place. We are caught and taken off guard even though we have been warned and exhorted to watch and pray (1 Peter 4:7). Are we realizing that someday, sometime, perhaps right now that the last person to be saved will receive Christ? And then, boom, all the events we pontificate about will suddenly begin to happen. The certainty that the fullness of the Gentiles must come in is biblical, and eventual, but we act as if it is casual, or not as cataclysmic as it really is. When God has filled up the Body, He will then unfold the rest of the mystery. Are we watching and praying for that to happen?

Are we following the crowds as they turn away to where the fun is when Christ makes us uncomfortable? Are we revolting against what Christ wants to do in our lives, drawing near to Him but with our own agenda? Are we settled outside the gate, having left from following Christ because we have not actually come in to the inner circle? Are we devout followers of Jesus, only to be sleeping in the most critical hour?

In the silence, when the great spiritual battles take place, when the crowds have turned away and some of the crowd has even turned against and some are waiting for instruction yet away from the battle and some are right near but falling asleep, where will you be?

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3 Comments:

Blogger Even So... said...

On your knees I hope...

February 10, 2008 6:34 PM

 
Blogger mark pierson said...

Convicting, very convicting.

February 10, 2008 9:04 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

We are all just one heartbeat away from eternity.

February 10, 2008 10:49 PM

 

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