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Which One is the Robber?

Mark 14:48-50

Jesus often taught by asking questions. "Am I leading a rebellion?" in the NIV is better translated, "Have you come out as against a robber ...

Running Away

Mark 14:51-52

This is probably a very personal aside from the author, Mark – describing himself as a young man in embarrassing personal circumstances.  Although it is unwise to try to join up Bible dots that are too widely spaced, there is some evidence to suggest that the Last Supper may have been held in Mark's family home (Acts 12:12) and that he rushed out in his linen sleeping cloth on hearing of a disturbance at Gethsemane.  The importance of this verse is to identify the writer as a participant (even if briefly and dishonourably), rather than merely reporting historical details which others observ

Comforting Delusion

Mark 14:53-54

It seems all wrong.  And it is!  The King of kings is brought before a kangaroo court.  Those who were supposed to teach others about God could not even recognise God when they saw Him.  Peter who promised to be right up in the front row supporting Jesus (Mark 14:31) is cowering behind the back row.  The one who was hot-headed about his ability to endure hostility went cold on his promise, and needed the fire to warm him up.

The Just Suffer and the Unjust are Saved

Mark 14:55-56

Law, if it is to be just, demands evidence of wrongdoing.  Here we have the best brains of the Jewish civil service and seventy-two of the top religious academics - on the horns of a dilemma.  They had arrested a man who did no wrong, with no evidence - except that nobody could point to any fault in Him (John 18:38).  How could the banner holders of truth do such a thing?  They had no more interest in truth than the Roman Governor, Pilate (John 18:38).  Despite their religion they were not interested in upholding the honour of the God of truth and faithful promise-keeping (Psalm 31:5 – word

Testify to the Truth

Mark 14:57-59

Jesus is still in the courtroom, where another twist to truth was about to come out.  Any intention to destroy Herod's temple would have been terrorism; and that is how the false witnesses presented what Jesus had said.  But John tells us what really happened.  "The Jews then responded to him, 'What sign can you show us to prove your authority to do all this?'  Jesus answered them, 'Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.'  They replied, 'It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?' But the temple he had spoken of

When God Has Spoken There Is Nothing More To Say

Mark 14:60-61a

The right to silence has been enshrined in many of the world's legal systems, but not in Jesus' day.  The High Priest's question had a more commanding edge, more like, "You are going to answer these accusations!" The bullying tactics of the kangaroo court were met by a wall of divine silence.  Jesus had no intention of defending Himself against liars, or logically strip out the prosecution case, line by line.  After all, He had come to die for liars: He loved them so much that He knew they could not be saved by Him saving His own life.  Is that not uniquely remarkable?

Who is Jesus?

Mark 14:61b-62

The trial judge moved from hearing faked evidence (Mark 14:55-59) to asking the most significant question of Jesus: "Are you God's Son, anointed for the salvation and judgement of the world?"  The word, 'the Christ' in Greek was the same as 'Messiah' in Hebrew.  It is a title rather than a name, meaning - 'the Anointed One'.  In the Old Testament, three kinds of people were anointed, as a sign that they had God’s authority: firstly, the kings who should have been the pastors/shepherds of Israel, anointed to bring the rule of God’s Word to the people (Ezekiel 34:1-4); secondly, the priests w

Violent Blasphemy

Mark 14:63-65

The High Priest had surrounded himself with liars in order to secure a conviction against Jesus.

Boasting of Self and Ashamed of Jesus

Mark 14:66-70

What a pathetic sight; the larger-than-life fisherman was trying to be brave - yet he was also trying to hide.  Having daringly swung his sword at those arresting Jesus, cutting off the High Priest's servant's ear (Mark 14:47), Peter fled away from Jesus in the darkness of Gethsemane.  All the disciples ran away (Mark 14:50).  But he was the one who protested that he would never leave Jesus; he would die with Him if necessary (Mark 14:29-31).

Trapped by Truth

Mark 14:71-72

A 'curse', in the Bible, is a phrase that is designed to bring disaster: they are powerful words invoking supernatural harm from God.  In Deuteronomy 27:14-26, God commands that His people agree to be subject to God's judgement if they break His law.  Such curses were a part of every covenant in which blessings were pronounced for obedience and curses for disobedience.  In these verses, Peter cursed himself.  It was like the oath of a witness in a courtroom: he swore that he was telling the truth when he said, "I don’t know this man you're talking about."  He put himself under the