During this Easter season, reading scriptures about the events that took place that weekend are a common practice in most churches. While reading this particular passage, I couldn’t help but see that this is painting a picture of the church today.
32 They went to a place called Gethsemane, and Jesus said to his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” 33 He took Peter, James and John along with him, and he began to be deeply distressed and troubled. 34“My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,” he said to them. “Stay here and keep watch.”
35 Going a little farther, he fell to the ground and prayed that if possible the hour might pass from him. 36“Abba, Father,” he said, “everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.”
37 Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping.“Simon,” he said to Peter, “are you asleep? Couldn’t you keep watch for one hour? 38 Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
39 Once more he went away and prayed the same thing. 40 When he came back, he again found them sleeping, because their eyes were heavy. They did not know what to say to him.
41 Returning the third time, he said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting? Enough! The hour has come. Look, the Son of Man is delivered into the hands of sinners. 42 Rise! Let us go! Here comes my betrayer!”
The disciples had spent a few years with Jesus, surrounded by him and witnessing all the miracles he has done. They even experience God using them as they went out to other towns in pairs of two. The disciples really didn’t understand what was going on at the Last Supper and so therefor never really grasp the seriousness of Jesus’ call to pray that night in Gethsemane. They really had no clue what was about to happen.
After Jesus had left Peter, James and John to go pray, he had returned to them to find them asleep. He had to wake them up to watch and pray. Jesus left them again to pray and returned a 2nd time. I can’t imagine what he felt when he came back and found them sleeping again. He didn’t even bother to wake them up. When he came back the third time, they were still sleeping and he said “Enough” the time had come for Jesus to be handed over.
So how does this paint a picture of the church?
We, Christians, have spent many years with Jesus, witnessing what he is doing in our lives and in the lives of others. Yet, through all this time, we really have no idea of what is about happen.
Jesus wants us to stand watch and pray, but yet we have fallen asleep. Due to us asleep, we have seen God taken out of our schools. Jesus came back to us to wake us up, stir us up with rival here and there, but we end up falling back to sleep. I wonder at what event Jesus came to us but turn back, could be the blood of innocent lives on our hands?? Look at the world now. The culture of our world is in moral decay, the enemy is rampart killing those who are Christians, our religious rights are starting to be threaten… WHAT ELSE NEEDS TO HAPPEN BEFORE THE CHURCH WAKES UP!!!
When Jesus came to the disciples a third time, it was too late.. The time had come. Their world was about to be completely turned upside down. Peter who professed that he would NEVER deny Jesus is found denying him 3 times that very night. What is going to happen to Christians these day? Our world is about to be turned upside down. Are we going to stand firm and stay strong in our faith or be like Peter?
As Christians today, we can easily say, we know the ending of the book. We know Jesus is the Victor and we are forever grateful that He did take our place on the cross and through his selfless act of love we are reunited back to our Heavenly Father. Yes, we have eternal peace that we will be with Jesus forever. Our forever is taken care of, but what about our Today! God still wants us to STAND and WATCH!
Luke 12:35 (NIV) Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning. Verse 37, It will be good for those servants whose master find them watching when he comes.
After Jesus ascended to Heaven, the disciples WOKE UP and gathered together regularly at the temple praising God and on Pentecost, they were filled with the Holy Spirit which started their ministry in a powerful way. The church needs a Holy Spirit refresher! We need to be turning this world upside down instead of the world turning ours upside down!
It’s time for us to Wake UP and be praying even more!
1 Peter 4:7 (NIV)
7 The end of all things is near. Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray.
Prayer is a powerful tool.