Meanwhile, we're still revisiting the Passion in our Coffee Break Bible Studies, so please feel free to follow along, and enjoy.
Revisiting the Passion – Enter the Trial
1. Last week we looked at the Jesus’ Last Supper, eaten at Passover with his disciples. Read Luke 22:15. Why might Jesus have “eagerly” awaited this meal? Given what’s about to happen, why might Jesus tell Judas to effectively “get on with it”? Read John 13:27b
2. At the end of the meal, Jesus and his disciples leave the city again. Which gate do you think they leave by, and what might be significance of Jesus being led captive back into the city through that gate? Read Matthew 26:30, and see question 1 from last week.
3. Without looking ahead, what events do you remember taking place when Jesus leaves the city to pray?
4. Read Matthew 26:31-32. When did Jesus’ disciples remember this prophecy? Was it fulfilled?
5. Read Matthew 26:33-34. How many times will the rooster crow? And how many times will Peter deny Jesus? Read Mark 14:30. Do you think the numbers represent symbols or counting?
6. Read Luke 22:3 & 31. What image of temptation does this give you?
7. Read Luke 22:35-38. Do they really need two swords? What might be going on here? Can you remember what one of the swords gets used for?
8. Where is Gethsemane? Do you know what the name means? Does this help you picture the scene in Matthew 17:1-2? Do you remember another occasion when Jesus separated Peter, James and John from the other disciples?
9. Read Matthew 26:39. If Jesus’ prayer in the garden were a model for how we should pray, what would we learn from it? What does Luke 22:44 suggest about the Jesus’ prayer?
10. Read Matthew 26:40. How do you think Peter, James and John felt when Jesus woke them up again? How do they respond? How do we respond when God gives us a wakeup call?
11. Read Matthew 26:47-49. How did Judas know where to find them? Read Luke 22:39 Why might he have used a kiss as his sign?
12. Read John 18:4-6. Why might Jesus have answered this way?
13. Do you remember which other characters appear in the garden scene? Read John 18:10 and Luke 22:50-51. What’s missing from John’s story? Read Mark 14:51-52. Who might the young man who ran away naked be?
14. Without looking ahead, can you remember how many trials Jesus was given?
15. Read Luke 22:54. Was this a trial before the Sanhedrin? What about Luke 22:66? Jesus clearly is tried before the Sanhedrin (which was a rather ad hoc court, summoned as needed), but it may be that a more private discussion takes place first. Was the discussion friendly? Read Luke 22:63-65
16. What was Peter doing during this trial? Read Luke 22:54-62 And what was John doing? Read John 18:15
17. What was Judas doing? Read Matthew 27:3-8. What was the significance of the Potter’s Field? Read Zechariah 11:12-13, Jeremiah 19:11
18. What was the wife of Pilate doing? Read Matthew 27:19
19. Why did the Sanhedrin send Jesus to be tried by Pilate? And why did Pilate send him to King Herod?
20. Could the call for the release of Barabbas be continued a trial too, perhaps in the court of popular opinion? Why might the people have called for Jesus to be crucified? Are “crowds” as easily swayed today as well? How does Jesus keeping silence compare with, for example, popular TV preaching ministries?
21. What crime is Jesus eventually charged with? Read Luke 23:1-5. How is this different from the crimes the Sanhedrin argued about?
22. Why might Pilate be predisposed to condemn Jesus? Read Mark 15:7, Luke 13:1. Pilate came to power around AD26 and got into trouble with Jewish authorities for displaying a statue of Tiberius in the temple. The statue was removed to Caesarea. Then he had an aqueduct constructed—presumably a good thing, but he hadn’t properly ensured the “ritual purity” of the water. What else has Pilate misunderstood?