But the hand of him who is going to betray me is with mine on the table. The Son of Man will go as it has been decreed. But woe to that man who betrays him!” They began to question among themselves which of them it might be who would do this. Luke 22:21-23 NIV
Can you picture this Passover meal? In an upper room in a home in Jerusalem – only Jesus and his disciples – sharing this special Passover meal. But there are so many other undercurrents as well. Jesus tells his closest friends that one of them who is eating with them – will betray him. In fact, Judas Iscariot has already made an arrangement with the chief priests and teachers of the law. Judas has agreed to betray Jesus – for money – at a time when no crowds are around Jesus. Jesus’ disciples look around the room at each other and are disbelieving that any of them would betray Jesus.
Yet in the next moment, “A dispute also arose among them as to which of them was considered to be greatest,” Luke 22:24. Jesus has just told them about the new covenant, about how his body will be broken and his blood shed, yet they are now arguing over which of the disciples is greatest? It seems to me Jesus’ closest friends are not grasping the importance of this night at all. Instead, they are acting much more like a dysfunctional family – pointing fingers at each other, trying to make themselves more important or more valuable than everyone else.
Very soon, this group of men will be unable to stay awake and pray for, or with, Jesus. Peter will deny Jesus three times and most of the others will hide. John was at the foot of the cross, but we are not told at all where the other disciples were when Jesus was crucified. The disciples were just men. “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” Romans 3:23. These men disappoint Jesus in his final hours before his crucifixion.
What about you and I? Have we done things, said things, failed to do something, or failed to say something that Jesus wanted us to do? Both Peter and Judas fail to live up to what they could have done. But the difference between them is Peter talks with Jesus after his resurrection, and his relationship is restored. It is good for us to do the same. Take some time to examine your heart, ask God to reveal to you anything you need to confess and ask forgiveness for. Jesus will be faithful to restore your relationship with him just as he did with Peter.
By Grace Hunter