Matthew 26:36-46 / Mark 14:32-42 / Luke 22:40-46 …
Imagine the scene that night in Gethsemane. Eight of the disciples were near the entrance to the garden, but they were unaware of what was unfolding. The Master and the temptation, the prayer, the great drops of blood from our Savior’s brow, these were evidence of the most extreme spiritual crisis of all time taking place. In the silence the battle of the ages raged on.
The inner circle of Peter, James, and John had been taken further into the silence by our Lord. They were witness to the troubled, distressed spirit of the One whom they had known as the Prince of Peace. Suddenly they also knew Him as the Man of Sorrows. Jesus told them to watch and pray, knowing that they, too, were about to enter their greatest hour of temptation.
Jesus had told His disciples to pray, and it didn’t seem like there was much activity, but the silence of the night betrayed the violence of the fight. The human crowds were gone, but the hosts of heaven looked on as the sinless Son of God faced His greatest hour of need. In the silence of that night the greatest spiritual battle of all time took place.
The road to the Cross leads through Gethsemane. It may seem as if there is no action going on in your life, within your family, at your church, but indeed, it is in these moments that all hell is lining up against you to try and take you down. Sometimes we are in the silence, without a clue or a care. Often we are caught and taken off guard even though we have been warned and exhorted to watch and pray (1 Peter 4:7).
Are we following the crowds as they turn away to where the fun is when Christ makes us uncomfortable? Are we revolting against what Christ wants to do in our lives, drawing near to Him, but with our own agenda? Are we settled outside the gate, having left from following Christ because we have not actually come in to the inner circle? Are we devout followers of Jesus, only to be sleeping in the most critical hour?
In the silence, when it seems that all is quiet, right before the drama intensifies, when the great spiritual battles take place, where will you be?