And immediately, while He was still speaking, Judas, one of the twelve, with a great multitude with swords and clubs, came from the chief priests and the scribes and the elders. Now His betrayer had given them a signal, saying, “Whomever I kiss, He is the One; seize Him and lead Him away safely.” As soon as he had come, immediately he went up to Him and said to Him, “Rabbi, Rabbi!” and kissed Him. Then they laid their hands on Him and took Him. And one of those who stood by drew his sword and struck the servant of the high priest, and cut off his ear. Then Jesus answered and said to them, “Have you come out, as against a robber, with swords and clubs to take Me? I was daily with you in the temple teaching, and you did not seize Me. But the Scriptures must be fulfilled.” (Mark 14:43-49)
Jesus Was Always In Control
The life of Jesus was always about accomplishing the will of the Father. There was never a time when the events of His life were not under the guiding hand of God as evident when Jesus was arrested. One of the hallmarks of the gospel of Mark is the message of power. Throughout his writings, Mark displays the control of Jesus over the world accomplishing the scheme of redeeming man. To the Roman mind, power was an appealing subject. Mark’s gospel would have attracted the Roman mind to the life of Jesus. In the beginning of the book, the word “immediately” is found repeatedly with the urgency of powerful events unfolding. Jesus in the garden is no less powerful showing He was controlling all the events leading to His death.
Mark’s account of Jesus’ arrest is brief. After praying to His Father, Jesus rises to await the huge crowd that is coming to put him in chains. Judas betrays his Lord with a kiss. When they lay hands on Jesus to take him away, Peter lashes out with a sword cutting off the ear of Malchus, servant to the High Priest. Mark leaves out the name of Peter and Malchus and other events surrounding the arrest. The message Mark is leaving on the minds of his readers is singular. Jesus chides the multitude for coming to arrest Him as if he is a robber. They bring clubs and swords to arrest one man. Jesus reminds them He had spent many days in the temple teaching and no one arrested Him. Mark shows that Jesus was in control of His arrest, trial and death.
Jesus death on the cross was not a mistake. It was not a failed plan of God to have His Son die for the sins of all man. His arrest in the garden was orchestrated by the will of the Father. There were times the rulers wanted to do something with Jesus but His time had not yet come. The driving power behind the life of Jesus was the fulfillment of God’s word promised from time beginning. Pride has always plagued man in his arrogance. Salvation for man came solely by the grace of God without man’s wisdom. Jesus died by the will of the Jews and the hand of the Romans as determined by the word of God. He rose on the third day to celebrate the first day of the week. Light was created on the first day and the Light of the world was established on the first day of the week. God’s hand was in every part of the life of His beloved Son.
Pentecost came about on the first day of the week. Jesus resurrection was preached on the first day of the week and three thousand souls were added to the church on the first day of the week. God was in control as He continues to fulfill the life of His Son. Submitting to the will of God is allowing Him to guide and direct the steps of life in accordance His word. Man could not change the plan of God in sending Jesus to earth, His ministry, death and burial. By God’s power, Jesus rose from the dead. He reigns because of the will of the Father. Salvation will only come when we subdue our spirits to the word of God allowing His control in my life. Refusing to accept the will of God does not take away His power. It takes away our hope. Submit to the life of Jesus Christ.
When Jesus said, “It is finished,” the issue was forever settled. God’s Son became our sin. We do not settle that issue, but one thing we must settle: what we do about it. (Vance Havner; 1901-1986)