Lesson 103

The Gospel of John

World English Bible translation

 Today's Scripture

18:18 Now the servants and the officers were standing there, having made a fire of coals, for it was cold. They were warming themselves. Peter was with them, standing and warming himself. 18:19 The high priest therefore asked Jesus of his disciples, and of his teaching. 18:20 Jesus answered him, "I spoke openly to the world. I always taught in synagogues, and in the temple, where the Jews always meet. I said nothing in secret. 18:21 Why do you ask me? Ask those who have heard me what I said to them. Behold, these know the things which I said."

18:22 When he had said this, one of the officers standing by slapped Jesus with his hand, saying, "Do you answer the high priest like that?"

18:23 Jesus answered him, "If I have spoken evil, testify of the evil; but if well, why do you beat me?"

18:24 Annas sent him bound to Caiaphas, the high priest. 18:25 Now Simon Peter was standing and warming himself. They said therefore to him, "Are you also one of his disciples?"

He denied it, and said, "I am not."

18:26 One of the servants of the high priest, being a relative of him whose ear Peter cut off, said, "Didn't I see you in the garden with him?"

18:27 Peter therefore denied again, and immediately the rooster crowed.

 Today's Lesson 

In Today’s Scripture, Jesus is being interrogated in the house of the high priest while Peter denies Him a second and third time in the courtyard. The guards and officers who had arrested Jesus were followed by two of His disciples, Peter and an unnamed disciple presumed to be the author. When Peter is escorted into the courtyard of the home of the high priest by the unnamed disciple, the woman who was the gatekeeper asked him if he was a disciple of the man that had been arrested. Peter denied that he was in order to gain entrance into the house.


As Peter was warming himself by a fire in the courtyard, Annas was asking Jesus about His disciples and His teaching. Jesus answered him saying that nothing He had done was in secret. His disciples and His teaching were well known. Jesus had taught in synagogues and in the temple. Surely the high priest already knew what they needed to know.


Indeed, Jesus knew that this trial was a farce. His fate was already determined. Jesus willingly faced that fate in allowing Himself to be arrested. He was determined to say nothing that would be construed as pleading for mercy. These men that had set themselves up as His judge did not understand mercy anyway. That is what Jesus had come to reveal and they had not understood what He had to say. He is treated roughly and then bound and taken to Caiaphas.


As Jesus is being taken to the current high priest, Peter denies Him on a second and third occasion. The second time he is asked if he was one of Jesus’ disciples. Peter proclaims that he is not. On the third occasion, he is asked if he had been in the garden when Jesus was arrested. Peter denied again. Then, immediately, the rooster crowed.


This dramatic moment tends to underscore the isolations of Jesus. Even His most courageous disciple now denies that he knows Jesus. There is no one that will stand by Him in the end. He is left alone with His enemies.


But, He was not truly alone. Jesus had earlier said, "Behold, the time comes, yes, has now come, that you will be scattered, everyone to his own place, and will leave me alone. Yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me." Even though His disciples had deserted Him and Peter even now denied Him in the courtyard, the Father was still with Him.


So it will be in our darkest moments as well. When the entire world seems opposed to us, if we are children of God, He will stand with us. God has promised to never forsake us in the face of adversity. And if we must face adversity, at least we have the assurance that we face it with Him.


What troubles must you face in the coming year? Who better could you choose to face them with than your Lord and Savior?


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