The Lord Jesus Christ - His agony and His trial

His agony

    The place.

      • the garden of Gethsemane - the oil press - still exists
      • Christ's prayer there was in stark contrast to that of John chapter 17
      • He withdrew from His intimates, and prayed alone
      • His agony in prayer is recorded in Matt 26:36-46, Mk 14:32-42, Lk 22:39-46
      • immediately afterwards He was arrested.... tried... crucified.

    The experience.

      • this is described in six statements, using intense language
      • each describes a different facet of His suffering
      • we understand but little: and reverently examine the sacred record.
      • He became "exceeding sorrowful" Matt 26:38. pressed upon. He experienced sorrow of the utmost intensity
      • He "began to be sore amazed" Mk 14:33. Terrified surprise. He was overwhelmed and awed as He saw the ingredients of the cup. Its terrors exceeded His anticipation's.
      • He was "very heavy" Matt 26:37, Mk 14:33. Confused, restless, 'away from home'.
      • He was "exceeding sorrowful unto death" Matt 26:38 His anguish was unfathomable, and His physical frame unable to bear it. An angel was sent to infuse new strength. Lk 22:43.
      • He was 'in an agony" Lk 22:44. A conflict such as He had never before experienced. He prayed more earnestly, even "with strong crying; and tears." Heb 5:7.
      • He sweated "as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground" Lk 22:44. The sufferings of the God-Man are clothed with mystery. There is no parallel between them and the sufferings of the martyrs.

    The reasons

      • not the fear of death, but :-
      • The renewed attack of Satan.
      • it was an unprecedented hour of darkness. Lk 22:53
      • but He was not deflected from the way of the Cross.
      • The anticipated bearing of His people's sin.
      • this was the purpose of the Cross. Is 53:6, 1 Pet 2:21-24, 3:18
      • He was to be made sin : to become a curse. 2 Cor 5:21, Gal 3:13
      • He would drink the cup of wrath without mercy
      • His holy nature shrank, not from death as death, but from the cursed death which was the punishment for His people's sin, imputed to Him.
      • The anticipated turning-away of His Father's face.
      • He enjoyed perfect fellowship with His Father. Jn 10:30
      • Soon He would be cut off from Him. Matt 27:46
      • the anticipation of this was the soul of His agony.

    The outcome.

      • He was heard ! Heb 5:7, Jn 11:42
      • The cup revolted Him. But He was not trying to escape it. He had consistently taught that it was inevitable. Jn 3:14, Matt 16:21
      • He prayed that the Father's will would be done, and that there would be no deflection, or falling short. His prayer was answered. Acts 2:23, Phil 2:8.
      • "Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins, and by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses." Acts 13:38-39.

His trial

    All the legal proceedings were irregular and the verdict unjust.

    The Jewish proceedings

    The arrest

          • This was illegal because :- it took place after sunset
          • through a bribed traitor. Ex 23:8
          • some of the judges taking part

        The trials

          • there were three, before Annas, Caiaphas, and the Sanhedrin
          • each took place before the morning sacrifice - and was therefore illegal
          • other illegalities included
          • Annas and Caiaphas sitting alone. Deut 19:16-18
          • requirement for 2 or 3 witnesses ignored. Deut 17:6
          • Caiaphas tried to get Christ to incriminate Himself. Matt 26:63
          • 24 hours did not elapse between the trial and the verdict
          • the court was held in secret; and on a feast day
          • the judges themselves brought the charge of blaspheme
          • the witnesses were known perjurers, unsworn, & contradictory. Matt 26:59-60 Deut 19:16-21
          • Jesus was struck before any charge was proved. Jn 18:22

        The verdict.

          • the judges unanimously condemned Jesus on His own unsupported testimony. Deut 17:6
          • the high priest tore his garments, in defiance of - Lev 21:10
          • the Lord's words were distorted, & His defence unheard. Jn 2:19-21, Matt 26:60 19:15.
          • the voting was not individual, but simultaneous. Matt 26:66
          • the Jewish proceedings were full of prejudice, fraud, and illegality.
          • the religious leaders were determined to secure a conviction at all costs, whether the evidence demanded it or not.

      The Roman proceedings

      before Pilate

          • Pilate came out to listen to Jewish charges Jn 18:24-29
          • these were now changed from blasphemy to sedition Lk 23:2.
          • Pilate illegally tried to make the prisoner incriminate Himself Jn 18:34-37
          • but ended by declaring His innocence. Jn 18:38, Lk 23:4.

        before Herod

          • the verdict should have led to the immediate release of Jesus
          • but the vacillating Pilate heeded a new torrent of accusations, Lk 23:5
          • he sent Jesus to Herod, who had authority over Palestine. Lk 23:6-7
          • Jesus hurt his royal pride by performing no miracle before him. Lk 23:8
          • no evidence of guilt was forthcoming, after mocking Jesus, Herod returned Him to Pilate. Lk 23:9-11
          • Pilate and Herod now became firm friends. Lk 23:12.

        before Pilate again.

          • Pilate resorted to every device to release Jesus. Lk 23:13-25
          • yet he was sensitive concerning his own position at Rome. Jn 19:12
          • the Jews would not be appeased, preferring Barabbas to Jesus. Matt 27:20-23
          • at last the true charge surfaced - Jn 19:7
          • Pilate washed his hands of the affair; the Jews accepted full responsibility Matt 27:24-25
          • Jesus was declared innocent; yet mocked & tortured. Matt 27:26-31
          • and then delivered to be crucified
          • yet Pilate insisted on a certain superscription - Jn 19:19-22
          • The Lord Jesus Christ was not condemned on any legal grounds. He was acquitted three times yet sentenced to death
          • His claim to be the Son of God, the Messiah, was intolerable, and this was the real reason for His murder.
          • This continues to be the real reason why men and women despise and reject Him today.

        His silence

          • "a time to keep silence, and a time to speak." Eccl. 3:6.
          • throughout the irregularities of His six trials, our Lord maintained the dignified calm and loving forbearance which had always characterised Him.
          • sometimes He remained silent, sometimes He spoke. what principles governed His actions?
          • A time to keep silence,
            • Our Lord remained silent
            • when He was falsely accused
            • when He was the object of curiosity, entertainment, or scorn.
            • When falsely accused before the Sanhedrin. Mark 14:55-61a.
            • When unjustly treated there. Matt 26:67-68, Lk 22:63-65.
            • When falsely accused before Pilate. Matt 27:12-14.
            • When sent to Herod. Lk 23:6-12.
            • When tortured before His crucifixion, Matt 27:26-30.
            • When finally questioned by Pilate. Jn 19:5-9.
            • now let us read 1 Peter 2:21-23, and take to heart these principles.
          • A time to speak.
            • Our Lord spoke :-
            • when it was feasible that His questioner was seeking the truth.
            • when to remain silent would have been misleading.
            • When Caiaphas opened his investigation. Jn 18:19-23.
            • When put under oath before the Sanhedrin. Matt 26:62-65,.
            • When Pilate opened his investigation. Matt 27:11, Jn 18:33-38.
            • When Pilate made it plain that he thought Christ was in his hands. John 19:10-11.
            • let us also take to heart these principles. Ephesians 5:1 !!

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