All biblical refrences is from the NIV Life ApplicationStudy Bible published by Tyndale House Publishers from Wheaton, Illinois andZondervan Publishing House from Grand Rapids, Michigan AUTHOR’SNOTEI am writing this book, I believe, as a response to acalling by God. For a number of weeks during the worship time in the church meand my family attends I had this sense that God wanted me to tell people aboutHis Son’s suffering, ressurrection and the promise of Jesus’ return in glory onthe day of the Lord, Judgment Day. This book is the result of that calling byGod. Our heavenly Father wants all people to know of his incredible love forhumankind. He loved us so much that He sent His only Son, Jesus, into thisworld to become the ultimate sacrifice, once and for all, to save this brokenand despairing world we live in from the bondage of sin and death in whichSatan is keeping this world.
Such deep and incredib;le love is far beyond anyhuman understanding. People out there need to know that our Lord and Saviour,Jesus, rose from the dead and is alive now and forevermore. He ascended intoheaven where He is seated at the right hand of God,interceding for us. I am notheologian or had any theological training. I am only an ordinary person being obedient to God whoI firmly believe, have called me to write this book in obedience to the GreatCommission that Jesus gave to His disciples, and by implication, to allbelievers before returning to His Father in heaven ( Matthew 28 : 16-20 and Mark 16 : 15-18 ).This book will take take the reader on a journey throughthe last hours of our Lord Jesus’ life and the suffering He endured because ofHis love for us. This book will givev it’s readers a behind the scenes lookwhat Jesus exoerienced during the last hours of His life on earth. This journrywill answer the question of why the Jewish religious leaders wanted to haveJesusv executed.
We will also look at everything that happened when Jesus andHis disciples shared what became known as the Last Supper and the meaning of it for Jesus’ church on earth.This willbe followed by Jesus agonising in thegarden of Gethsemane,the hurt of His betrayal by Judas Iscariot who was with Him since the start of His ministryon earth , the arrest of Jesus and the total farce His trails before the Jewishand Roman authotities of the day, the intense hurt and dissapointment Jesusfelt when Peter, whom Jesus loved dearly, denied Him and the horrific death Jesus experienced on thecross. Thankfilly this book does not have to end here. The rest of this bookwill be a joyful celebration of the glorious ressurection of our Lord Jesus,His ascension to heaven where He sits at the right hand of the Fatherinterceding for you and me and the glorious promise that He shall return againto take those who believed, trusted and obeyed Him and accepted His sacrificeon the cross, to the place prepared for them in the house of God the Father.(John 14 : 4 ).Sometimes we, as followers of Jesus, forget theincredible suffering, pain both physical and spiritual, that Jesus went throughand His excruciating death on the cross. This book will remind the reader ofthis and also give the reader a close-up look at Jesus’ physical and spiritualsuffering.
Why did Jesus do this willingly ? Thev answer to this question canbe found in His incredible He love for you and me so much so and me so muchthat He could not bear to see us going into eternal condemnation because of oursin. To save us from this fate Jesus gave His life willingly on the cross becauseHe knew that He, sinless, blameless and pure, was the only sacrifice acceptableto God. He paid the debt for our sin that we could never pay.
But this book isalso a reminder and celebration of the fact that although Jesus died on thecross He did not stay dead. No, on the third day after His death, God HisFather raised Him from the dead forever defeating Satan’s most fearsome weapon,death. Our Lord Jesus is alive and reigns forever! Amen. Today we have a HighPriest in heaven, Jesus, interceding for us before God the Father. However whenJesus ascended to heaven He did not leave us alone to our own devices andmachinations but sent the Holy Spirit to continue to teach and guide us. Allbelievers must live every day as if it is the day of Jesus’ glorious return tojudge the living and the dead and to take those who remained faithful to Him totheir eternal home in heaven where they will spend etenity in His glorious andmajestic presence..
Because Jesus Jesus gave His life willingly on the crossHe defeated Satan and delivered us from the slavery of sin and death. He won for us the victory over Satan, sin anddeath on the cross of Calvary once and for all. Because of His sacrifice on thecross we no longer need to fear death because for all believers death is notthe end but the beginning of the eyernal life that was promised ( John 3 :16 ).What remains for us who believe in and follow Him is to enforce that victoryand refute the lies of Satan that he is in control.
He is defitely not not, butJesus definitely is. In Jesus we have eternal life. Therefore we no longer haveto fear death.
This truth is found in John 3 : 16 : “For God so loved the worldthat He gave His one and only Son, that whomever believes in Him shall notperish but have eternal life”.We serve a loving and awesome God. My prayer is thateveyone who reads this book will look with new eyes at Jesus’ suffering anddeath because of His great love for you and me. Through the selfless sacrificeof His life you and I can now have the hope of salvation where before there wasno hope.We can also accept His glorous ressurection signifying that He is aliveand victorious over Satan, freeing us forever from the clutches of Satan. Wemust also never forget that now we have an intercessor in heaven in Jesus,interceding on our behalf before God the Father.
Lord we thank You for loving us so much that Yougave Your perfect Son to save us from the clutches of Satan.Jesus we lookforward to Your coming again in glory to claim those who stays faithful to Youand obey You. AmenIn writing this book I myself came to a deeperunderstanding of Jesus’ great love for me. It was very hard to describe Jesus’suffering and death on the cross because of our sin. It was so hard and emotional for me that at timesI had tears in my eyes because I came to the full realisation once more that Itwas our sins that put Him upon the cross of Golgotha. But Jesus did not staydead. No, on the the third day after His death on the cross He was gloriouslyraised to life by God the Father.
To all humanity I declare that we serve aliving Jesus that defeated Satan on the cross and through His resurrection from the dead. What a joy andcelebration it was to write about His resurrection and His promise to returnone day to fetch those that belong to Him. IIt is my sincere and heartfeltprayer that this book will bring you to a deeper understanding that Jesussuffered and died in the cross because He loved you.I also pray that you willembrace the assurance that jesus was raised from the dead and that, thereforeyou serve a Jeasus that is alive now and for all eternity. I myself am lookingforward to the day when Jesus will come again in glory to take those who havechosen to follow Him to the place that He has prepared for them in heaven.. Amen. CHAPTER1Plottingto kill Jesus ( Matthew 26 : 1-5 ; Mark 3 : 1-6 and Luke 22 : 1-2 ) :The plot to kill Jesus, in my view, put into motion thesuffering and death that Jesus would endure in our place.
Fortunately forhumankind everything did not end with Jesus’ death. No, Jesus was raised tolife by God and in so doing forever defeated Satan and sin. Jesus also promisedthat one day He will return in glory tojudge the living and the dead and to rule as eternal King over His kingdom thatwill have no end ( Revelation 22 : 12-13: “Behold, I am coming soon ! My reward is with Me, and I will give to everyoneaccording to what He has done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and theLast, the Beginning and the End.” ). The plot to kill Jesus was orchastrated by the chiefpriests and elders under the leadership of Caiaphas the current High Priest. Asthe Passover was approaching the Jewish religious leaders gathered in the homeof Caiaphas, the current High Priest, and under his leadership started to plotto arrest Jesus and have Him executed.
What was it that infuriated the Jewishreligious leaders to such an extent that they hated Jesus so much that theystarted to plot to have Jesus, the Son of God, executed ?To answer this question :1.Jesus did not adhere to their rules and regulationsregarding the Law ( Ten Commandments ) because they were man-made and was added to the originalLaw, as given by God to Moses. Jesus by no means disrespected the Law that Godgave to Moses. He , however, had no time for all these manmade rules andregulations that the Jewish leaders created and added to the Law because itobscured what God had in mind when Hegave the Jews the Law. Jesus Himself declared : ” I have not come to abolishthe Law or the Prophets ; I have notcome to abolish them but to fulfill them.
” ( Matthew 5 : 17 ).2.The Jewish leaders were also particularly incensed bythe fact that Jesus did not adhere to their own manmade rules and regulationsregarding the observance of the Sabbath.As far as the Jewish leaders wereconcerned Jesus showed a total disregardfor the obsevance of the Sabbath because He did not abide by their manmaderules and regulations governing the observance of the Sabbath.These Jewishreligious leaders were so preoccupied with their manmade rules and regulationsgoverning the observance of the Sabbath that they lost sight of the truemeaning of the Sabbath as intended by God. Jesus wanted to restore the Sabbathto what God originally intended the Sabbath to be. God wanted the Sabbath to beday on which people would rest from their labours and worship God. So whenJesus healed people on the Sabbath the Jewish religious leaders were furiousbecause healing people on the sabbath did not fit in with the way they decidedthat the Sabbath should be observed, despite the fact that Jesus, the Son OfGod, told them that it was lawful to do good on the Sabbath ( Matthew 12 : 12).
3. What madethese Jewish religious leaders see even more red when it came to Jesus was thatJesus proclaimed that God’s salvation was available to everyone who believes inHim,that is Jesus, and serve Him. This meant that God’s salvation was not onlyfor the Jews but was also available to all Gentile believers. This was just toomuch for the Jewish religious leaders to swallow as they believed Gentiles to be unlean and therefore inferiorto them. Because they did not believe that Jesus was the Son of God they failedto understand that Jesus came to save all sinners throughout the world.
Because they did not understand Jesus’true mission of bringing forgiveness of sins and eternal life to all humanity ,they could not understand why Jesus offered God’s salvation to Gentiles aswell. Jesus came to save not only the Jews but the whole world.4. A big affront to the Jewis religious leaders was thefact that Jesus associated with sinners.
The Jewish religious leaders actuallythought of themselves as superior to sinners and therefore did not associatewith them. Again the failure of the Jewish leaders to accept Jesus as the Sonof God and therefore not understanding that He came to save sinners led them todetest Jesus for associating with sinners, the very people He came to save.Jesus made the fact that He came to save sinners from their bondage to sin veryclear to the Jewish religious leaders when He said in Matthew 9 : 12-13 : ” It is not thehealthy who need a doctor, but the sick.
But go and learn what this means : ” Idesire mercy, not sacrifice. For I have not come to call the righteous, butsinners. ” 5. Although all the reasons mentioned above contributedto the fact that the Jewish leaders wanted Jesus dead,the main reason for thedetermination of the Jewish leaders to have Jesus killed was the fact that Heclaimed to be the Messiah, the Son of of the living God. This they could not accept becauseacceptance of Jesus as the Son of God would mean that they would have to submitto His authotity because as the Son of God Jesus’ authority would supersede theirs.
Caught intheir pride and arrogance they were notprepared to give up their authority and status in Jewish society. To them theirauthority and status in Jewish society was so important to them that they were blind to the fact that Jesus wastheir long awaited Messiah, the Son of God Further the Jewish religious leaders expected the Messiah to be an allconquering hero that would overthrow the hated Roman oppressors. Because Jesusdid not fit their preconveived ideas ofwhat their Messiah would be like, they rejected His claims as the Messiah andaccused Him of blasphemy because He claimed the truth that He is the Son of God.
In their eyes it was blasphemy for anyone to equate themselves with God and byclaiming that He was the Son of God Jesus did exactly that. The Jewishleaders could not or would not acceptthat Jesus was truly the Son of God because of what they could lose ( theirauthority and their high standing in Jewish society ) by accepting Jesus as theSon of God and bow to His authority.From the reasons stated above it is clear that the Jewishreligious leaders was not interested in justice at all.
They just wanted Jesusdead and they would do just about anything to achieve this. Their motives forwanting Jesus dead had nothing to do with justice but was based purely onjealousy, hatred, pride and the refusal to believe that Jesus was who Heclaimed to be, the Son of God. JudasIscariot’s agreement to betray Jesus (Matthew 26 : 14-16 ; Mark14 : 10-11 andLuke 22 : 3-6 ) :In Luke 22 : 3 it is recorded that Satan entered JudasIscariot. Under the control of Satan Judas went to the chief priests and strucka deal with them. He would betray Jesus into their hands in exchange formoney.The price agreed upon was thirty silver coins ( Matthew 26 : 15 ), the price of a slave (Exodus 31 : 32 ).
How tragic that Judas was prepared to betray the Son of God,the Saviour of the world for the price of a slave. The chief priests wereobviously delighted with this turn of events. They wanted to arrest Jesus andhave Him executed but they were afraid that the people might riot. Judas couldsolve this problem for them because, being a disciple of Jesus, he would knowwhen Jesus would be alone with His disciples with no crowd present which wouldcreate creating the perfect opportunity for Judas to hand Jesus over to themwthout fear of a crowd that might cause a riot.Why did Judas despite being called by Jesus to be one ofHis disciples and were with Jesus throughout His ministry on earth prepared tobetray Jesus ? In my opinion there were two main motives why Judas chose thiscause of action.
The first one was obviously greed ( his love for money ). Heagreed to betray Jesus in exchange for thirty silver coins.We also know that Judas was a thief. In the gospel ofJohn in capter 12 :1-11 is recorded theanointing, with expensive perfume , of Jesus by a woman. In this passage in verses4-6 we read the following ” But one of His disciples, Judas Iscariot, who waslater to betray Him, objected,”Why wasn’t this perfume sold and the money givento the poor? It was worth a year’s wages.” He did not say this because he caredabout the poor but because he was a thief ; as keeper of the money bag, he usedto help himself to what was put into it.” Don’t we also betray Jesus by chasingafter money, ambition and status in lifeto such an extent that we forget to focus on Jesus and our commitment toHim?Jesus need to remain the center of our focus everyday of our lives.
Nothingmust become more important to us than our commitment to Jesus. The secondprobable motive why Judas betrayed Jesus could be the fact that he becamedisillussioned with Jesus. Like the other disciples he believed that Jesus wasthe long awaited Messiah.
He saw Jesus’ miracles, he saw Jesus driving outdemons demonstrating His authority over Satan and his demons and he also heardhow Jesus taught with absolute authority about God, the kingdom of heaven andhow to go about living lives that are pleasing to God.Despite all of this Judaswas unable to understand Jesus’ mission. Judas believed that Jesus, as the longawaited Messiah, came to overthrow and drive the hated Roman oppressors fromIsrael and restore the kingdom of Israel to it’s former glory , as it wasduring the reigns of David and Solomon.
I believe that Judas followed Jesusbecause he was power hungry. He wanted an important position in this newkingdom of Israel that he believed Jesus was going to establish. When herealised Jesus was not going to do this he became disillussioned with Jesus. Itwas this disillussionment that gave Satan the opportunity to enter him, drivinghim to betray Jesus. Don’t we also betray Jesus and our commitment to Him when we desire power in this world so muchthat our efforts to gain that power in this world become more important thanJesus and our commitment to Him?We need to be very vigilant ,watchfull and persistant inprayer and the study of God’s Word so that Satan cannot use money, power,ambition and status or any other wordly things to lure us away from focusing onJesus and our commitment to Him. I do not say it is wrong to want to have thsethings it but we must never let it become more important than our devotion toJesus and our commitment to Him.
Jesus and our commitment to Him must remain our first priority in life.