The terrifying, cruel and wonderful work of Christ, which will rescue us from our own sin and destruction, has begun. He has been betrayed by Judas and denied by Peter. After Christ’s arrest the rest of the disciples ran away to hide.
Christ is taken into custody and the men who are holding him begin to play a cruel game of blind man’s bluff. They blindfolded him, made fun of him, and punched him saying, “Prophesy! Who is it that struck you?” (You can read in the other Gospels that they hit, spit, and slapped him as well – Matt. 26:67,68; Mark 14:65).
In the morning he is taken before the Sanhedrin where all the religious leaders had gathered. The man they had been trying to trap and arrest for 3 long years was finally at their mercy.
During his time with the Sanhedrin three of his titles are mentioned.
“If you are the Christ, tell us.” But he said to them, “If I tell you, you will not believe, Luke 22:67
The word “Christ” and Messiah both mean “anointed one.” One is Hebrew and the other is Greek. Jesus tended to avoid the term “Messiah” because it was a very political term. He had not come to overthrow the government but to overthrow our hearts. It was a dangerous term to use around the Romans. They didn’t really care if he called himself “God” but the term “Messiah” could have made them think he was planning a political rebellion. If the religious leaders could get Jesus to say that he was the Messiah they could hand him over the Romans who would have gladly put him to death.
The Son of Man
But from now on the Son of Man shall be seated at the right hand of the power of God.” Luke 22:69
This is a title that Jesus chose for himself. It speaks of his humanity, the fact that he was born like all other people and that he would experience death like all humans.(Lk 9:22) But he is also referring to Daniel 7 in which this Son of Man holds all power. This rubbed the Sanhedrin the wrong way because the Son of Man in Daniel 7 was considered to be divine and so they knew exactly what Jesus was getting at.
The Son of God
The leaders now come right out and ask him if he is the Son of God, hoping to catch Jesus in blatant blasphemy. At his birth the angel announced that he would be the “son of the Most High”. At his baptism a voice from heaven said, “This is my son, with whom I am well pleased (Lk 3:22) and again at the transfiguration a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is my Son, my Chosen One; listen to him!” (Lk. 9:35) and so Jesus finally gives them what they are wanting to hear.
And they all said, “Are You the Son of God, then?” And He said to them, “Yes, I am.” (Lk. 22:70 NASB)
Yes, finally! They had all they needed to arrest Jesus and hopefully they could have him put to death. They were blinded by their hatred and their hearts were closed to the revelation of God that was standing bruised and disheveled right in front of them.
When reading this account we need to ask ourselves some hard questions.
Who do we say Jesus is? I am sure we would be quick to say, “Oh yes, he is the Son of God who holds all power, the Christ who takes away our sins.” But does what we say we believe show itself in how we live? Or do we look for salvation elsewhere?
Our thinking is sometimes a bit skewed. We trust that only Jesus can pay the penalty for our sins, save our souls and prepare us for heaven and yet we have trouble believing that he can save us from the rest of the things in our lives.
If Jesus can save us from hell then he can surely save us from our sadness, from our impatience and from our anger issues. If he is capable of taking on himself all the wrath of God then he is able to help us become respectful wives and loving mothers. He can strengthen our faith, keep us from falling, give us courage and even fill our life with joy.
Really, the question is not who we say Jesus is, but who he said he is. Jesus has spoken, he has accomplished our salvation. Do we really believe him?
Looking To Jesus,