The Mineral Wells Wednesday Bible Study Club met on Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2013.
Fourteen members met in the home of Mrs. Elaine Summers to continue the study of the Gospel of John.
John Chapter 18 continues with the story of Jesus and his journey to the cross.
In the 17th chapter of John he prepares his disciples to continue the work without him.
After the last supper in the upper room Jesus and his disciples walk to the Garden of Gethsemane. Judas followed Jesus to the garden, but Judas brought a large contingent of temple police and Roman soldiers to arrest Jesus.
Jesus identified himself as the “Jesus of Nazareth” for whom they were looking: “I am he.”
Jesus insisted he was the man they wanted and insisted the soldiers let his disciples leave.
This passage shows the courage with which Jesus boldly identified himself to the soldiers.
When these soldiers first encountered Jesus they were overwhelmed by his authority as they fell down in his presence. Jesus knew that he was about to die and that it was God’s plan – he would fulfill the glory of God.
Jesus’ protective love is expressed by his insistence that he is the one the soldiers are looking for; they must let his disciples leave.
Jesus was completely obedient to God: “Am I not to drink the cup that the Father has given me?”
All the disciples fled from Jesus except Peter and an unnamed disciple. These two followed Jesus to the home of the high priest, Caiaphus.
The unnamed disciple appears to be known by the household and, at his invitation, Peter entered in from the courtyard.
Three times in this setting Peter is asked if he is not one of the disciples – and three times Peter denied that he was one of Jesus’ disciples.
And then the cock crowed three times. This denial happened just as Jesus said it would. But Jesus saw the real faithfulness of Peter and forgave him – just as he forgives us.
Finally, Jesus is brought before Pilate, the governor. Pilate does not think that Jesus is guilty of anything. The Jews bully Pilate into action against Jesus.
Once again, Pilate tries to avoid punishing Jesus by offering to release “The King of the Jews” as it is Passover. And the throng shouted, “Not this man, but Barabbas!”