Holy Week – Part 2
“‘You will all fall away,’ Jesus told [the disciples], ‘for it is written: “I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered.”’” (Mark 14:27 NIV)
Christians all over the world are observing Holy Week, which culminates with Good Friday and Easter Sunday, the days when we remember the death and resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. There is so much to learn about the events surrounding Jesus’ death and their lasting impact. Perhaps it would help to see these events through the eyes of some of the people in the story and imagine what these people would tell us today.
Let’s start with Jesus’ disciples in the Garden of Gethsemane— minus Judas, of course, who had by this point already left to betray him. Peter, James, and John, couldn’t wait with Jesus as he agonized in prayer, dreading the dark cloud that would soon descend upon him. He who knew no sin would be made sin so that you and I could be made right with God (2 Corinthians 5:21). But the disciples had no clue; and each time Jesus came back to them, he found them sleeping.
All of the disciples then fled when Jesus was arrested and hauled to the palace of the high priest where he would be beaten and where fake charges would be brought against him. Jesus was all alone in this ordeal, because in his hour of need, his disciples were nowhere to be found.
Actually, Jesus knew beforehand that they would all run away, and he had told them so; but instead of holding it against them, he had given them instructions about where they were to meet him after he had risen from the dead! By the time Jesus was crucified and buried in the tomb, those disciples had of course already forgotten all that; but Jesus had not forgotten. When the women came to the empty tomb on the third day, an angel told them to remind the disciples that they were to meet him in Galilee (Mark 16:6-7). Jesus wanted them to know: “I’m still going to use you.”
So I’m here to tell you, on behalf of those disciples, that if you have failed the Lord or once followed him but have gone astray, he still wants to work with you. Because Jesus is longsuffering with all of us.
Isn’t it true that we sometimes get so full of ourselves religiously, thinking, “I’m better than this one or that one, and I would never do or think this or that”? And then we fail God, and we want to run and hide. But the Lord says to us today, as he said to the disciples back then, “I knew you were going to fail even before it happened, and I still died for you. I still have plans for your life.”
Oh, what patience; oh what love the Savior has! That’s what the disciples would tell us if they could speak to us today.
Let’s take some time to thank him for his patience and his mercy toward us!
To be continued…