questioning Jesus, Mark 14 ‘..are you asleep?’

10 Sep

Jesus on earth was intensely emotional. He felt love and joy; anger and disappointment. As he is walking to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray, he feels grief. Overwhelming, overpowering grief. A grief that is a death. Why?
Because all his disciples will betray him. All will fall asleep at their Master’s hour of need. After washing their feet, after teaching and serving, Jesus will be alone in a beautiful garden. He is being passed over, unseen, separated from all. Alone. He knows they will leave him,

“You will all fall away,” Jesus told them, “for it is written:

“‘I will strike the shepherd,
and the sheep will be scattered.

28 But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.” 29 Peter declared, “Even if all fall away, I will not.” 30 “Truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “today—yes, tonight—before the rooster crows twice you yourself will disown me three times.” 31 But Peter insisted emphatically, “Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you.” And all the others said the

pause here. peter insists with emotions, with all his feelings, I will never …I will die…I will not fall away…

In the Greek ‘empathy’ is used to describe someone who is acting whilst driven by passion, and thus not objectively or calmly. Pieter here is not at peace. In the English version ‘empathy’ just means that someone is just getting to feel deeply (“more inside”) the other and his/her situation.

Peter is not ‘feeling’ Jesus at this moment as they walk together. He is not receiving, listening to what Jesus is saying. He is only into himself, his feelings. The other disciples could not even be there as Peter speaks. Still, Jesus sits at foot of the Mount of Olives this night. He will not climb to the top but will sit in the garden. 

Jesus is processing his emotions, his sorrow beyond dreams, through prayer.

He prays not once ‘Thy will’, to his Father, not twice, but thrice. Thy will. Three times he processes his sorrow. And his closest friends sleep through all. They have fallen away,

32 They went to a place called Gethsemane, and Jesus said to his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” 33 He took Peter, James and John along with him, and he began to be deeply distressed and troubled. 34 “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,” he said to them. “Stay here and keep watch.”

35 Going a little farther, he fell to the ground and prayed that if possible the hour( might pass from him. 36 “Abba, Father,” he said, “everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.” 37 Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. “Simon,” he said to Peter, “are you asleep? Couldn’t you keep watch for one hour? 38 Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

39 Once more he went away and prayed the same thing. 40 When he came back, he again found them sleeping, because their eyes were heavy. They did not know what to say to him. 41 Returning the third time, he said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting? Enough! The hour has come. Look, the Son of Man is delivered into the hands of sinners. 42 Rise! Let us go! Here comes my betrayer!”

‘They did not know what to say to him.’

Without words, no more questions, they rise to face Judas.

Judas has not been sleeping. Evil awakes and pursues. Even to Jesus’ heart. But Jesus has prayed his heart, his self, to the Father’s hands and will.

Jesus rises to face Judas.

He rises.

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