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Marks of Peace

Gospel of Luke  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  54:28
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I would like to open this morning by looking at Philippians 4:4-7. Paul is closing his letter to the Philippian church and here he encourages them to keep on praying. Look with me at Philippians 4:4-7, he writes this;
Philippians 4:4–7 NASB95

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!

Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Last week we looking at the most agonizing prayer ever recorded in Scripture. It was the prayer of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior in the Garden of Gethsemane. It was Jesus giving His submission over to the Father and knowing the trial and the physical pain He was about to endure He still went to the Father asking if there is another way if God could implement His redemptive plan than let that plan come about. If there is another way for all of God's wrath to be poured out or taken from His people that God could put that plan in place instead. But Jesus knows God's plan and He submits to this plan regardless of how much pain He will endure.
Jesus knows the power in Prayer just like Paul knows the power in prayer and that is why Paul tells the church in Philippi to, Rejoice in the Lord always, and to be anxious for nothing but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God." There is something very powerful in prayer and I want to once again stress that in prayer your problems don't magically disappear the may very well still be there and even at times feel like they are getting harder or worse but as we are going to see today when you pray and you are following after God and truly seeking to be in His presence as Jesus did and as Paul tells the Philippians to do then one thing is for sure even in the midst of any trial God can give you an attitude of peace. We will look at this attitude this morning as we explore Jesus' reaction to His arrest. We will see by His example that we must have a Peaceful Attitude in Trials.

Marks of Peace

We see this peaceful attitude of Jesus' in our text this morning in Luke 22:47-53
Luke 22:47–53 NASB95

While He was still speaking, behold, a crowd came, and the one called Judas, one of the twelve, was preceding them; and he approached Jesus to kiss Him.

But Jesus said to him, “Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?”

When those who were around Him saw what was going to happen, they said, “Lord, shall we strike with the sword?”

And one of them struck the slave of the high priest and cut off his right ear.

But Jesus answered and said, “Stop! No more of this.” And He touched his ear and healed him.

Then Jesus said to the chief priests and officers of the temple and elders who had come against Him, “Have you come out with swords and clubs as you would against a robber?

“While I was with you daily in the temple, you did not lay hands on Me; but this hour and the power of darkness are yours.”

Now as we look at this text we see that it is broken up into three very simple parts each dealing with three different audiences. Jesus deals first with Judas, than the disciples, and finally His enemies. What we need to keep in mind through out this entire event of the Jesus' arrest is His peaceful response and also you have to keep in mind that even as it looks like Jesus is losing here, He is in control of the entire situation.
Let's look at Jesus' peaceful attitude in this text. And as we look at verses 47-50 I want you to keep this in mind; Jesus demonstrates Peace in sorrow.

Peace is Marked by Patience

Lets look at verse 47 and 48 we read; "While He was still speaking, behold, a crowd came, and the one called Judas, one of the twelve, was preceding them; and he approached Jesus to kiss Him. (48) But Jesus said to him, 'Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?'" Luke keeps the scene the same picking right up where we left off last week. Jesus has just finished praying, more than likely weak and tired already from this agonizing three hours of prayer and here comes this mob in the distance. I am sure the night sky was lit bright with the torches these men were carrying. We know there were a great deal of them as John the Apostle has recorded for us in his account of this very event.
John writes this in John 18:3
John 18:3 NASB95

Judas then, having received the Roman cohort and officers from the chief priests and the Pharisees, came there with lanterns and torches and weapons.

Now you see John writes that it was a Roman cohort which is about 600 men and there were the religious leaders and they were carrying lanterns and torches. They are coming to arrest Jesus and we see that Judas is taking charge of singling out Jesus. Judas was not the leader of this mob but he did take the lead so he could point out to those who wanted to arrest Jesus just who He was.
Why would Judas need to signal to them who Jesus was? Wouldn't they have known Him? Well yes they would have known Jesus but it was very obvious these people were coming with malice. It was dark and there were a lot of people in this crowd and Jesus was with His twelve. The point of Judas kissing Jesus is one of letting the people know this is the one. They wouldn't have to worry about the others with Him and they also didn't have to worry about His twelve being martyrs and jumping in Jesus' place so Jesus could escape. That is a possibility. There are many people who lead rebellions and they have people who follow them who would take the fall for that individual so to be sure this didn't happen Judas went in first before the crowd and he provided the signal to the army as to who it was they were to arrest.
This has to be one of the worst ways to betray someone. It is one thing to stab someone in the back, and even to do something against them when they are not around but to betray someone with a kiss it has to be the most heartless form of betrayal possible.
First of all this is a symbol filled with such care and love for another person. It is a symbol of deep rich intimate relationship. Like a greeting between family members or in this case between a teach and a pupil. Judas chose a means of love and affection as a way to signal who Jesus was to His enemies and the soldiers who followed to arrest Him.
Second because a kiss is so deep and rich and because a kiss is face to face. Judas had to actually look Jesus in the eye as he is going to Him with such a clandestine and malicious plan in his heart to turn Him over to His enemies. It take a special kind of evil to do something this horrific and detestable. To turn on someone who has done nothing to you but show mercy, compassion, love, grace and tenderness. Even when He was rebuking Judas or the others I am sure those men felt as though they just disappointed their father than feel like they were being unjustly treated. That is just how Jesus made people feel. He made them feel like they were loved and I can guarantee Judas didn't feel any different. Yet here he looking his Lord and Savior in the eye and in his heart telling Him, "yeah I know you showed me the deepest of mercy, compassion, love, grace and tenderness but I want to give all that up for a bag of silver." Ouch. What a horrific and terrible thing to do to the Son of God to look into the face of God and by his actions say to Him, "you aren't enough."
Yet Jesus was able to look at him straight in the eye and not turn His head knowing Judas' heart and intention. This must have pained Him deeply. Here is a man who has been given over to his lusts given over to his flesh and there is no indication that Jesus stopped him or Jesus turned from him all He did was look Him in the eye and call out his hypocrisy. Where we would probably get angry and possibly even become extremely emotional in respect to some one doing something like this to us Jesus doesn't. In fact even though this event is painful He still demonstrates such a deep sense of peace in the midst of the pain of the betrayal of a close friend. There was no accident that this event happened immediately after Jesus' most agonizing moment in prayer. Jesus had just finished communing with the Father and asking for a different way but knowing this is the will of the Father and this is how it was always supposed to go down and Jesus being the perfect sinless Savior Son of God follows God perfectly. And even in an emotionally painful situation as a being betrayed by one of His closest friends Jesus can still have peace in the midst of this pain.
What an example for us. Now I know this is Jesus He is perfect we are not. But never the less we are to be Christlike, we are to be ambassadors of Christ so why not look to this example and see the peace He had through the pain of being betrayed and know that through prayer He can bring this same kind of peace upon our hearts and minds in our situations. What Jesus had and what we can have as well when we pray is peace in the midst of the pain. Or we can be patient with the way we are treated by others. Even when we are being stabbed in the back with the person looking us right in the eye.
Solomon understood this he knew about patience and how peace leads to patience. Look at what Solomon writes in Ecclesiastes 7:8-10
Ecclesiastes 7:8–10 NASB95

The end of a matter is better than its beginning;

Patience of spirit is better than haughtiness of spirit.

Do not be eager in your heart to be angry,

For anger resides in the bosom of fools.

Do not say, “Why is it that the former days were better than these?”

For it is not from wisdom that you ask about this.

Solomon tells us it is better to have patience in any situation no matter how bleak it seems from the onset because the end of the situation is better then the beginning.
Paul also tells the Ephesian church in Ephesians 4:1-3
Ephesians 4:1–3 NASB95

Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called,

with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love,

being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

Now notice here Paul is writing from prison. He knows what it means to follow after Jesus and he is imprisoned for his faith still he implores the Ephesian church to continue to walk in righteousness, Christlikeness. He even tells them what it looks like, "with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. No matter what people do to you, you need to be at peace and have patience in the situation and with one another. Don't worry about what the person is doing to you worry about how you react.
Jesus knew Judas' intentions, we don't have that luxury. I think if we did we would handle things much more differently. Jesus even when being hurt by a friend still had peace and this peace was demonstrated in His patience with Judas, the disciples and even with the religious leaders who were coming to arrest Him.
So we see here the immediate result of Jesus' prayer. He is at peace and it is demonstrated in His patience. Now as we look at a contrasting attitude by the disciples you will see at the end of this Jesus' attitude of peace also leads to compassion. Peace leads to compassion.

Peace is Marked by Compassion

Let's go ahead and look at Luke 22:49-50, he continues and writes, "When those who were around Him saw what was going to happen, they said, "Lord, shall we strike with the sword?" 50 And one of them struck the salve of the high priest and cut off his right ear." See here we have Jesus' disciples who are with Him and they are watching this crowd coming on fast and as they watch they begin to figure out what is going. They are coming for Jesus. They recall the conversation they had in the upper room, the one they misunderstood concerning the swords. Now with their adrenaline pumping their fight or flight response kicks in and they automatically jump to fight for their Rabbi, Lord and friend. They think this is the time Jesus was talking about concerning fighting and they are ready to physically fight to defend Him.
We see they ask if they should strike with the sword. They want to know what to do. One of them doesn't wait for a response he takes the sword and cuts of the ear of one of the slaves of the high priest. The one who does this shouldn't come as a surprise is Peter. We know this from John's account of the story. You see the turmoil and confusion that surrounded the disciples. Very different from the attitude Jesus had. Do you know what the difference was. Not one was God and the others mere humans. The difference is what they did in the garden. Jesus prayed and the disciples didn't. Prayer isn't going to change your situation but it will change how you handle it. Jesus reacted with peace and we see His patience. The disciples react with fear and they strike back in violence. Patience in the midst of trouble can only come from the peace we receive from God through Jesus Christ, just as Paul told the Philippian church.
Jesus reacted to this with situation with sternness but still having compassion and mercy. Look with me at verse 51, "But Jesus answered and said, "Stop! No more of this." Jesus is telling His disciples to knocked it off. Jesus' mission has been one of peace, He has never fought back in this way and He will not now and He doesn't want His disciples to do so either. This is a lesson they have to learn because they will soon be arrested for Jesus' namesake and beaten because of the gospel and when they do they will go about it with the same kind of peace as Jesus does here. They will no longer put up a fight.
Then we get to Jesus' last miracle, His last true act of compassion and mercy. One that actually encapsulates this entire event. Look at the end of verse 51, "And He touched his ear and healed him." He goes to the slave with being asked without seeking the mans faith and He touches the man's ear and heals him. Jesus in His peace demonstrates true compassion and mercy on someone. This is the picture of this entire event because Jesus in this merciful and compassionate act is a small picture of the mercy and compassion of the cross. No one here asked Him to take our place on the cross. His disciples didn't ask Him to take their place on the cross. In fact when Jesus told them He would have to die Peter took Jesus aside and we find this in Matthew 16: 21-23.
Matthew 16:21–23 NASB95

From that time Jesus began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised up on the third day.

Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This shall never happen to You.”

But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s.”

You see this wasn't mans plan. Not at all, this was God's plan. Jesus is at peace with God's plan so much so that He in this peace He is able to have the deepest and richest compassion for man, even one of His own enemies. This healing this final miracle which Luke is the only one who records it is so telling of the Character of God and the character of His compassion and mercy. Just like Paul explains to the Roman church this in Romans 5:6-11.
Romans 5:6–11 NASB95

For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.

For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die.

But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.

For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.

And not only this, but we also exult in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.

See that we were helpless, we were enemies still God loves us, God demonstrates this love for a worthless sin filled lot who were only deserving of His wrath. He sent His Son who peacefully took the wrath that was due His own enemies. Jesus had peace and this peace was marked with compassion, even compassion for His enemy who was there to help arrest Him and put Him on the cross. Yet Jesus didn't just let this man bleed out. With out asking and with out anyone begging Him to He healed the slave. And in the same way with out any of us asking He went to the cross with an attitude of peace for us His enemies demonstrating the deepest compassion. His going to the cross provides a healing that is much greater than a physical healing. It is the offer of forgiveness to His enemies to turn back to God to have a right relationship with God once again. This is the compassion He has and the compassion is a mark of the peace which is a result of His time in prayer with the Father.
Jesus had an attitude of peace in the midst of His trial. This came from prayer and as we have seen it is marked with patience and with compassion. The last mark of peace we will look at this morning is the mark of surrender.

Peace is marked with Surrender.

Let's look at verses 52-53, "Then Jesus said to the chief priests and officers of the temple and elders who had come against Him," These are the religious leaders, the military and the civil leaders. They are the representatives of three different groups who came to arrest Jesus. Jesus turns His attention to them and watch what He says at the end of verse 52. "Have you come out with swords and clubs as you would a robber?" See this He is calling them out. They are coming after Him with military force. They are coming after Him as though He was public enemy number one. This huge show of force for a single man who's entire ministry has been marked by peace. Yet here they come to arrest Him as though He is a robber.
He continues in verse 53 really pointing out their hypocrisy. He says, "while I was with you daily in the temple, you did not lay hands on Me; but this hour and power of darkness are yours." Do you see this. Jesus is calling out their covert operation here. He knows they have nothing against Him, He knows they know He is innocent because of He were guilty of a crime they would never have let Him teach in the temple. They would have stopped it right then and there. Jesus knows their hypocrisy and He doesn't shy away from telling them so.
They way they are arresting Him is the same way they would go after a rebel against the Roman government. A rebel would never be allowed to teach the way Jesus did yet they let Jesus teach in the temple. This is a clandestine maneuver, the religious leaders are acting wickedly and in secret all because of their jealousy of Jesus. Yet Jesus doesn't fight back. He tells them this hour and the power of darkness are yours. This refers to the fact that it is night but also refers to the fact that the evil they are preforming is being allowed because it has to happen this way.
Don't think for a moment Jesus isn't in control of this situation and don't think for a moment who couldn't have gotten Himself out of it. Look with me at John's account of this same event in John 18:4-6.
John 18:4–6 NASB95

So Jesus, knowing all the things that were coming upon Him, went forth and said to them, “Whom do you seek?”

They answered Him, “Jesus the Nazarene.” He said to them, “I am He.” And Judas also, who was betraying Him, was standing with them.

So when He said to them, “I am He,” they drew back and fell to the ground.

When He says I am it is emphatic, in the Greek it is ego eimi. Ego itself is enough to say I am when Jesus says ego eimi it is the equivalent of when God said to Moses I AM, Jesus is saying His name. Look at what happens to all of the men who have come to get Him. They fall to their knees at the sound of His name. You think they over took Jesus, not a chance, Jesus surrendered Himself not because they were many but because He was at peace with what God was doing and with what He had to do for you and me and all those men who were standing there with clubs and swords ready to hang Him all because the religious leaders were jealous of who He is and what He is teaching and doing.
Jesus surrenders to His enemies all for the purpose of going to the cross so the offer of forgiveness can be provided. He began this journey with prayer. The prayer was to strengthen Him.It didn't take the problem away it didn't change the outcome one bit. What it did was it gave Jesus the peace to just fulfill the will of the Father. Here we see the marks of peace in Jesus Christ, Peace is marked by patience, compassion, and surrender to the will of God no matter how bad things look.
This is why we must pray on a constant basis and this is what the result should be. Jesus didn't try to make things go His way even though He had the power to, and many times that's what we do. We come to God in prayer and we want the situation to change and then we move ourselves in trying to change the situation. Don't. Be patient, be compassionate and surrender yourself to God's will in the midst of it all.
Philippians 4:4–7 NASB95

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!

Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

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