30: The Hour of Darkness (Lk 22:47-23:56)
The Lord’s earthly ministry had
come to an end. It was time for Him to be delivered into the hands of
evildoers. Thus He said to those who came to arrest Him, “this is your hour,
and the power of darkness.” (22:53). The Gospel writers record vividly the
injustice during the Lord’s trial, the torture He endured, and the excruciating
death He suffered. But through it all, God’s plan was accomplished and His name
was glorified. With His atoning sacrifice, Christ claimed ultimate victory over
the power of darkness.
“Hereafter the Son of Man will sit on the right
hand of the power of God” (22:69).
“And when Jesus had cried out with a loud voice,
He said, ‘Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit.’ Having said this, He
breathed His last” (23:46).
Did You Know…?
Council (22:66): The Greek word is synedrion,
from which comes the name Sanhedrin (as in the Berkeley Version). The Sanhedrin
was the highest Jewish tribunal in a Jewish city, exercising civil jurisdiction
according to the Mosaic law and a restricted measure of criminal jurisdiction.
Its seventy or seventy-two members came from three groups: chief priests,
scribes, and elders. (Jensen 100).
Pilate (23:1): To get a death sentence, they
needed to take the case to Pilate, the governor, the procurator of Judea and
Samaria, a.d. 26-36 (cf. Luke 3:1)…Pilate’s home was in Caesarea, but at this
festival time, he was in his Jerusalem palace.
Cyrene (23:26) is a leading city of Lybia, west
Sour wine (23:36): A drink carried by soldiers
for quenching thirst.
Paradise (23:43): In the Septuagint (the Greek
translation of the OT) the word designated a garden (Ge 2:8-10) or forest (Ne
2:8), but in the NT (used only here and in 2Co 12:4; Rev 2:7) it refers to the
place of bliss and rest between death and resurrection (cf. Lk 16:22; 2Co
The sixth hour…until the ninth hour (23:44):
From noon to three in the afternoon.
Veil of the temple (23:45): The curtain that
separated the Holy Place and the Most Holy Place (Ex 26:31-33).
Beat their breasts (23:48): A gesture of sorrow
or contrition (cf. 18:13).
Arimathea (23:51): A village in the hill country
of Ephraim, about 20 miles northwest of Jerusalem.5/1488
The Preparation (23:54): Friday, the day before
the Sabbath, when preparation was made for keeping the Sabbath.5/1587
Spices and fragrant oils (23:56): Yards of cloth
and large quantities of spices were used in preparing a body for burial.
Seventy-five pounds of myrrh and aloes were already used on that first evening
(Jn 19:39). More was purchased for the return of the women after the Sabbath.
1. What irony is pointed out in
Jesus’ question “Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?”?
2. Explain the words “this is
your hour, and the power of darkness” in
light of God’s sovereignty.
3a. Why do you think the Lord
healed the servant of the high priest?
3b. What lesson can we learn from
the Lord’s non-resistance?
4. Observe Peter’s actions in
54-55. What do they tell you?
5. Have you ever felt confident
about yourself but failed miserably in the time of testing?
6. Have you in one way or another
denied the Lord like Peter?
7a. What triggered Peter’s
realization and bitter weeping? Why?
7b. How does the Lord also bring
us to repentance in the same way?
8. Why do you think the men
treated Jesus with such cruelty and mockery?
9a. What was the central issue
during the trial?
9b. What does this tell us about
Jesus’ ministry? About the chief priests and scribes?
10a. On what basis did the
council condemn Jesus?
10b. What was the real reason for
the condemnation ? (Mk 15:10)
11. What false charges did the
Jewish leaders bring against Jesus?
12a. Why did Herod’s curiosity
turn to contempt?
12b. How does the Lord Jesus
likewise “disappoint” some people today?
13. Account for Jesus’ silence
during the trials.
14a. Why did the Lord ask the
women not to weep for Him but to weep for themselves and their children?
14b. Explain Jesus’ words in 31.
15. Consider the Lord’s prayer in
34. What lesson can we learn from this prayer regarding forgiveness?
16. According to 35, how had
those who sneered at Jesus misunderstood Him?
17. What can we know about the
second criminal from His words in 40-42?
18. What can we learn about the
Lord’s saving grace from His words to the criminal?
19. What is the significance of
the torn curtain? (Heb 9:1-28)
20. What do the centurion’s words
in 47 tell us about the Lord’s death?
21. What does the Lord’s death
mean to you?
22. What lesson can we learn from
the women disciples?