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have an ominous sound. Judas for ever will bear that name of eternal reproach. One is tempted to speculate upon what Judas may be thinking to day concerning his perfidy. We speak of a traitor to his country as being peculiarly vile, but what can be said of a traitor to his God? The scheme for our Lord’s arrest was well planned and executed. But had they known it, the Lord’s enemies need not have p l a n n e d anything; Jesus’ death a l r e a d y h a d b e e n planned by God (cf. Acts 2:23; 4:24-28). Jesus was apparently in the hands of men; actually, He was in the hands of God, and all that oc curred to Him was in fulfillment of Scripture. In the eagerness to have his wicked plan succeed, Judas “kissed him much” (v. 45, R. V, margin) as the signal to the enemies of Jesus to come and take Him. We hear of the evils of nations at war, but here is an act that outweighs all other deeds of de ception that men ever have performed. But the record holds a lesson for us also. At the very time that we may proclaim how much we love the Lord, we ourselves may succumb to an evil impulse and betray Him to His enemies. It is sin that leads to be trayal of the Lord, and sin may cause even saints to do dastardly deeds. III. T h e S il e n c e (15:1-5) "The chief priests . . . with the elders and scribes and the whole council . . . delivered him to Pilate,” thus making the whole Jewish nation responsible ' for the Saviour’s death. The Jews themselves could not slay Him, lest they be condemned by the Roman a u t h o r i t i e s . Hence they brought Him before Pilate and “ac cused him of many things,” none of which they could prove, as Pilate well knew. “But he answered them nothing,” thus fulfilling the prophecy, “He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth” (Isa. 53:7). He was fully yielded to the will of God operating through these wicked men, and that will was His highest pleasure whatever the cost to Himself. He was then proving that God’s will is good and acceptable and perfect (cf. Rom. 12: 1, 2). His spirit, soul, and body were all given up to that will (cf. Heb. 10:9; John 4:34; 8:29). It is for us also to prove, or experience/the same good and accept able and perfect will of God in our lives. Points and Problems 1. "And they came to a place which was named Gethsemane" (Mk. 14:32). The Greek term translated “ place” means “ an enclosed piece of ground.”
This would accord with John who calls it a “garden” (18:1). Luke speaks of it simply as a “place” (22:40). It was beyond the brook Kidron about three-fourths of a mile from the east ern walls of the city. It has been con jectured that the owner of the place was Mary, mother of Mark, which would explain why Jesus and His dis ciples apparently had been given the right of entry. The traditional site is now under the control of the Francis cans. Its eight olive trees, seen by every traveler, are very old, but they are not the originals, for Josephus de clares that the Roman Titus (A. D. 70) cut down all the trees in the neigh borhood of Jerusalem. 2. "Began to be sore amazed" (v. 33). The American Revision translates it “greatly amazed.” The Greek word occurs elsewhere only in Mark 9:15 where it describes the reaction of the multitude -when they saw our Lord after His descent from the Mount of Transfiguration. They were “ greatly amazed” at what they saw, evidently traces of His blinding glory which still remained. What did the Lord see in the Garden when He began to be “greatly amazed” ? Scripture does not provide the answer, but Whatever it was, we may be sure it was awesome and terrible. Some think Satan him self entered this sacred area and tried to kill Him. I am inclined to be lieve that here the Lord looked with unveiled face into the awful darkness into which He must enter forsaken of God in ord£r to stand in the place of sinners and experience their doom. It was now close upon Him. Whatever He saw in that dread hour, we may thank God without ceasing that He faced it and got the victory. Blessed be His name forever, 3. “And kissed him" (v. 45). What a dreadful kiss, symbol of all that is disloyal, evil, avaricious, and false! The present world war has given us a term that describes the man and his act; it was the kiss of a “Quisling.” 4. "And bound Jesus" (15:1). There is incredible irony in this simple statement. •Look at these solemn- visaged, self-important priests and rulers of the nation, busy now with the business of getting rid of One who often had been a thorn in their flesh. Remember now how little they are, and weak, as with great officiousness they "bound" the One in whose hand their Very breath is held, the great God of heaven and earth. Golden Text Illustration L uke 22:42 In the prayer meeting a good sister prayed, “Lord, we’re afraid of our wills; we’re afraid to do our wills for fear of the consequences; teach us Thy will!” There was something striking about that prayer. The majority of people,
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