Sermon Summary • Oct 8, 2017
Mark 14:22–52 (NIV) • Pastor Tim Tseng
The moment has arrived. The last supper is done. Jesus leads his disciples into the Garden of Gethsemane and is about to be betrayed, arrested, and executed. How would we have responded? Perhaps with disappointment? Perhaps with dread?
Let’s look at everyone who was there and consider whether we might respond in the same way.
1. The Sanhedrin (the chief priests, the teachers of the law, and the elders). They actually weren’t there, but they were so angered by Jesus that they sent a crowd of henchmen and thugs to arrest (kidnap would be a better word) Jesus. Why were they upset? Wasn’t it because Jesus had confronted them for their religious hypocrisy, abuse of power, and support of oppressive social systems? In contrast, Jesus taught about God’s desire to heal, forgive, restore, and include all who are humiliated, excluded, marginalized, and all sinners. Jesus claimed to be the Messiah who could forgive sin.
When we are challenged in this manner. Instead of listening and learning, instead of a respectful conversation, we may want to use our power to control, clamp down, and end the challenge. And that is what the religious authorities, the Sanhedrin did.
2. Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss. Perhaps he truly loved Jesus, but was willing to throw Jesus under the bus when Jesus did not fulfill his expectations. Do we respond like Judas whenever we act like we love and worship on Sundays Jesus yet turn our back to him the rest of the week?
3. The disciples were confused. They thought Jesus would lead a rebellion. But when Jesus renounced violence, they all fled.
4. The inner circle (Peter, James, and John) fell asleep. Even though they had the closest relationship with Jesus, they could not stay awake. This often happens when we are too comfortable with church. We fall asleep at the most important moments and do not hear the most important messages.
5. Jesus, had real honest engagement with his emotions (which stirs the heart). This led to his honest prayer of desire to not “drink the cup.” Yet, in the end, his heart submitted to God’s will. Jesus was willing to give up his life and embrace the suffering of the world, in order to save the world.
How we should respond: Are we willing to be with Jesus? Then pay attention to human suffering and watch what God is doing. Don’t fall asleep. Be #woke! All Jesus wants is for us to be willing to share in his cup of suffering, for the sake of the world.