July 08, 2013
From the desk of Dr. A.J. Higgins
“Jesus therefore knowing all things that should come upon Him,
went forth and said unto them, “Whom seek ye?”
The scene depicted in John 18 stirs worship in our hearts. He went to a place to which He had often gone (v 2). Judas would know exactly where to find Him. The motley army of men came forth with their lanterns and torches to find the One Who is Light of the world. They came with their weapons to subdue the One Who is Love. How incongruous!
But it is verse 4 which arrests our attention. “Jesus therefore knowing all things, went forth.” He knew everything which would follow. Nothing was hid from His awareness. He knew the scourging, the scorn, and the spittle. He saw the faces of men approaching who would find pleasure and sadistic delight in torturing and abusing. His knowledge did not hinder Him. He “went forth.”
But notice as well, the word, “therefore.” Because He knew everything He went forth. It was not just despite knowing, but because He knew. He willingly went forth to accomplish all that was about to occur.
Still further, when His majestic words, “I am,” caused them all to back away and fall prostrate, He once again tells them, “I am He.” He placed Himself into the hands of His own creatures knowing all that would follow.
Adam, in the Garden, had hidden from judgment. When God came with His probing questions, Adam quickly shifted blame to Eve and sought to evade judgment. The exact opposite happened here. He “went forth” to endure the judgment.
No unforeseen event,
E’er took Him by surprise;
Toward the cross with fixed intent’
He moved with open eyes.
Men reckless deeds will vaunt
And count as courage true,
The daring of the ignorant
Who know not what they do.
The scourging and the scorn,
The worst that men could do;
The meaning of the crown of thorn
Lay open to His view.
I. Y. Ewan
1. Trace all the occasions in chapters 18 and 19 where the expression, “went forth” or “came forth” are mentioned. Then link them with the parts of the burnt offering of Leviticus 1.
2. Only John places the cross between two gardens (ch 18:1; 19:41). Why do you think this is so? Is there a link with Genesis 2, 3?
3. In verse 1 the Lord Jesus crossed over the brook Kidron. David the King once crossed the brook during a time of rejection. Compare what David found when he crossed the brook with what Christ found when He crossed.