Have you ever had people out against you, looking for an opportunity to take you down?
This is how it was for Jesus, but He never let it distract Him from His divine purpose. He did not always ignore them, confronting them when necessary but He continued to be about His Father's will.
We need to stop being put on the ring just trying to defend ourselves all the time. God wants His children aggressive not passive, throwing punches against the enemy not retreating. We must remember we are not fighting against flesh and blood....
Jesus while eating at Simon's home is anointed by expensive perfume over the head by a woman. Some of those at the table are indignant and yell at the woman that this oil should have been sold and the money given to the poor.
We must be cautious not to stand between God and His will because of our views. We are to acknowledge God in everything to assure what we are thinking is correct.
God's ways are above our ways. There is a bigger picture we miss if we look at a situation in our own limited perspective. This woman was Prophetically attuned to what was about to come while those at the table were not. She was preparing Jesus for His death.
Jesus told them that what this woman did will never be forgotten. God may lead us in a way that others will not accept and even highly oppose, but we must be obedient for we live to please God not man.
Betrayal (Mark 14:10-26)
Those who have power often experience betrayal. People will come alongside someone for a time but due to jealousy and greed will desire the power they have, and turn against them. Power can corrupt the most faithful followers. We must all stand guard and walk in discernment because it can be the people closest to us that betray us.
The religious leaders were plotting against Jesus trying to find a way to trap Him, and then Judas shows up willing to betray His Master. These leaders are thrilled, they have a spy now, someone within Jesus circle that can take Him down.
Jesus always knew Judas would betray Him but also He knew His heavenly Father would use it all for His divine purpose. When we discern evil intentions in another we need to ask God how to deal with it. Exposing it right away seems right but it might not fit God's plan.
Jesus was human, He felt what we feel, it could not have been easy to be at supper with Judas knowing what he just had done. Jesus though does bring it to light, He says in Mark 14:18 that "someone at this table will betray me." He then explains how "terrible it will be for the one who betrays the Son of God. That it would be better if he had never been born." This act cursed the name of Judas, nobody could have that name again and not be thought of as a betrayer.
Jesus has communion with His disciples which is our highest purpose to be in continual fellowship with God, partaking in the life of Christ through the shedding of His blood.
If we try to be a Christian without being in communion with Christ we will betray Him. For apart from Him we can do nothing. What we try to do will misrepresent Christ and be used as an excuse for people to turn against Him.
Deserted (Mark 14:27-31)
We have all heard the cliche "It's lonely at the top." People strive to get to the top and often those who help them get there are now the ones that try to get them down. Power often corrupts the individuals who have it and those around them that want it.
When people's expectations are not met and decisions made are not what others desire the people begin to desert the leaders they once followed.
Jesus says the prophecy "God will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered," is about to be fulfilled. Peter says "if everyone deserts you, I never will." Later, Peter does deny Jesus three times as Jesus had proclaimed. These disciples were only willing to follow Jesus as far as it was good for them when it was possible that they may die for following Jesus they were like forget you.
How far are you willing to follow Jesus? The Bible says if you are not willing to deny yourself and pick up the cross, you are not worthy of Him.
As leaders, we must choose to obey God even if it means losing family and friends. Our decisions may not be popular and cause persecution, but nevertheless, "not my will but yours oh Lord, my God, my Redeemer."
WAKE UP (Mark 14:32-52)
Spirit led prayer is what infuses our being with God’s heart. As we see here at the garden of Gethsemane this will at times lead us to experience great grief as we feel His pain for the lost and dying world.
God often calls us to be the answer to what we pray which may mean experiencing great suffering. Jesus Himself asked if the suffering of the cross could be taken away. Since we are human like Christ we should never expect to want to suffer, yet through the power of Jesus we can say, “nevertheless not my will, but your will be done, Father.”
The disciple's way of handling all that was going on was by sleeping. Many believers are asleep and not in prayer, they don’t carry the heart of God and therefore are unwilling to carry the cross. They desire an easy, comfortable, self-gratifying way to Heaven. But the Word of God says “wide is the path to destruction and many are those that follow, but narrow is the way to everlasting life and few are those that find it.”
Most Christians are not interested in prayer and evangelism but they sure love the prophetic, healing, and the supernatural. God’s heart is centered on the first two, and the miracles rarely come unless one is prayed up and evangelizing others. So what happens is people are out chasing the supernatural going from conference to conference rather than following the great commission where signs and wonders become a regular occurence.
Why do believers give into temptation so easy? The answer is Mark 14:38. Lack of prayer; “the spirit is willing but the body is weak.”
Because of the disciple's spiritual weakness, they were not ready to handle the betrayal and arrest of Jesus but rather reacted in anger not seeing the bigger picture and then in fear deserting Jesus.