Day 89: The Way Of The Warrior - The Warrior's Journey®

Day 89: The Way Of The Warrior

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The Way Of The Warrior

In our last devotions, we’ve been exploring the last hours of Jesus’ life.  We noted that Jesus was challenged by Judas, 600 Roman soldiers, elite guards from the Jewish High Priest, and religious academics – the Pharisees. A formidable array faced Christ.

We also observed that Jesus commanded the situation.  Then Jesus, knowing all that would happen to him, came forward and said to them, “Whom do you seek?” (Jn. 18:4). We saw Jesus had Supreme knowledge: knowing all that would happen to him, then Supreme courage: came forward and said to them.  He did not cower, he faced the crowd.

They answered him, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus said to them, “I am he.” (18:5). Ironically the person they sought was talking to them. They did not know him until he identified himself.  People can be oblivious to Jesus, so blind he reveals himself to them.

Then Jesus unleashed his Supreme power: When Jesus said to them, “I am he,” they drew back and fell to the ground. (Jn. 18:6).  Like bowling pins the crowd toppled from two words – ‘I am.’  In Greek the word ‘he’ is not present.  He simply spoke the name of God – Jehovah = ‘I am.’ Notice they did not bow and worship, they went backwards…they could not stand before him, even when he revealed a tiny portion of his glory.

On previous occasions Jesus expressed the same idea: To the Samaritan woman at the well: Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am he.” (Jn. 4:26).  Again the ‘he’ is assumed and not in the text.  Her response? “Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did. Can this be the Christ?” (Jn. 4:29).  She believed he was the Messiah, the Christ.

Another occasion, Jesus in the Temple was confronted by the religious elites.  There was quite a blow-out, but Jesus finished the argument by stating: Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” (Jn. 8:58).  Their response? ‘… they picked up stones to throw at him…( 8:59). Some gladly received him, others hated him.  Remember, Abraham was Genesis 12ff, and the Lord was present in that era. Go figure.

How about Moses at the Burning Bush? Then Moses said to God, “If I come to the people of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what shall I say to them?” (Exod. 3:13).  God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.'” (3:14).

In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus revealed an electron of his glory and hundreds of men toppled over.  He could have vaporized them. We must have a correct understanding of the majesty of Jesus Christ.  He was not a victim. He orchestrated the events leading to his death.  To the crowd coming to arrest him, he revealed his power – do they worship him?

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (Jn. 1:1). And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (1:14).  How did mankind respond to him? He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. (1:10, 11).

How are you doing with Jesus?  So far we’ve seen his Supreme knowledge, Supreme Courage (18:4), then his Supreme power (18:6). Next we’ll see his Supreme ethics: So he asked them again, “Whom do you seek?” And they said, “Jesus of Nazareth.” (18:7).  Jesus makes the authorities confirm their own testimony, whom they wanted.  He made them conform to the law, stating twice who was their target – him.

Next he shows his Supreme love. Jesus answered, “I told you that I am he. So, if you seek me, let these men go.” (18:8).  Jesus legally gained freedom for his disciples.  He’s watching over and caring for his own.  This is good news for you, if you are a genuine follower of Jesus Christ.  He cares for you.  The disciples never asked for help.  Before they asked, he helped. Before they call I will answer; while they are yet speaking I will hear. (Isa. 65:24).  He’s aware of your circumstances: I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. (Jn. 10:28).  That’s good news.

He helped them without a miracle.  Just natural legal statutes, and natural means.  It was that simple. That’s how he will work in your life. Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. (1 Pet. 5:7).  Get used to his goodness.  He’s safe.

There can’t be any problems now for the disciples.  Jesus has won their freedom.  He faced his accusers alone.  He will now proceed to death.  That’s the master plan.

Then Simon Peter, having a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant and cut off his right ear. (Jn. 18:10).  Oh, no!  Here comes a knucklehead to mess things up!  Yeah, Peter is bold, and willing to jump into the fray.  Are any of you like this, trying to help the Lord out?  Did Peter miss the Lord knocking down hundreds like bowling pins?  Do you think that I cannot appeal to my Father, and he will at once send me more than twelve legions of angels? (Matt. 26:53). A Legion is 6,000.  Jesus could have 72,000 angels if needed!

At times the Lord has plans for us to jump into conflict.  He wants us to be like lions (Prov 28:1).  But timing is also a factor. We need to be alert to the Lord’s leading.  Jesus had already won their release.  Peter needed to be spiritually attentive. He was a spiritual dunderhead, in a time of crisis, rather than a thoughtful assessor of God’s leading.

Jesus didn’t reprimand Peter for carrying a sword.  At first Peter’s careful: “…Lord, shall we strike with the sword?” (Lk. 22:49). But he didn’t wait: “…stretched out his hand and drew his sword and struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his ear. (Matt. 26:51). Jesus rebuked him: Jesus said to him, “Put your sword back into its place. (26:52).  The Lord rebuked the soldiers, and the Pharisees (Lk. 22:52).  He also rebuked two of his disciples: Judas, (Luke 22:48), then Peter.  Great authority carries great responsibility.  The closer you are to Jesus, the more he expects of you.  Spiritually prepare for his call.

In Gethsemane Jesus’ exhibited Supreme knowledge (Jn. 18:4), Supreme courage (18:4), Supreme power (18:6), Supreme ethics (18:7, 8), then Supreme love (18:8).  When Peter moved away from Jesus’ protective umbrella, he hurt someone.  By application, it is best for us to remain under Jesus’ protection, obedient to his leading.  Live like it.

By Nathan Werner

The Warrior’s Prayer

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank you for the majesty of your Son, Jesus.  His character is so wonderful and compelling we want his attributes in our life.  We note his behavior in the middle of turmoil, and we want our mind to think like his.  We note his compassion for his own people, and we want our heart to be like his.  We note his moral character with his enemies, and we want our ethics to be like his.  Jesus is a perfect man while being in the middle of depraved mankind.  We desire you make us like him.

Then as you shape us with redemptive thinking, putting divine attributes in us, patterned after Jesus – help us to be compliant to them.  May your plan for us, chiseling divine character into your finished work — may we become a reflection of the Holy: For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Eph. 2:10).  We are your work of art Lord.  We are your masterpiece that reflects the message of the artist.  May the world be awestruck by your marvelous creativity since you change us from clay to your magnum opus.  We pray this in Jesus’ precious name.  Amen.

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