They Drew Backward and Fell to the Ground

His pathway on the earth was coming to a close. The time when He resurrected Lazarus He was contemplating His own death in a matter of two weeks later. When He saw Mary’s and the Jews’ sobbing over the death of Lazarus, He was deeply moved in spirit and troubled then He cried; they guided Him to Lazarus’ tomb again, He signing repeatedly  disquieted, He approached the tomb (John 11: 33-35.38). Why was He so disturbed, to the point of joining the crowd of mourners and crying with them? Was He crying due to the occasion, was He crying for the sake of those who were crying? What was really the reason for His weeping?  In His weeping, He expressed sorrow, and pain, not for Lazarus, for He was about to bring Lazarus to life. Tears rolled down His cheeks remembering that in just two weeks He was going to go through the cruel ordeal of death in the hands of His enemies. Yes, He suffered as a human would suffer.  And at that moment, He wept as man while His soul transmitted the horror He was going to go through. Maybe, He wept also for the human race, which was incapable of overcoming physical and spiritual death, seen in the suffering those expressed at Lazarus’ tomb.

A week had passed since the event of Lazarus’ resurrection, when a supper was prepared for Him in Bethany at the home of Lazarus, Mary and Martha. “While Lazarus joined those at the table, Martha served them and Mary anointed YAHSHUA’S feet with a very expensive ointment of pure liquid nard.” That supper took place on a Sunday “six days before the Passover.” That week was going to be the week when He was going to take the position of the Lamb of God and be sacrificed on the altar of a cross by crucifixion at the same time the priests were performing their Passover sacrifices. Mary had no idea she was anointing Him for His burial. It was a gift she gave Him in gratitude for what YAHSHUA had done in bringing their brother back to life. Unknown to her, it was also a gift preparing Him for His death. While Matthew and Mark referred to Mary’s anointing of His head, John refers to the anointing of His feet. That is for us to know that she anointed His entire body.

The events that took place in that week were all in harmony for what was to happen Friday of that week. First, He was anointed in preparation for His burial, and the next day He rode on a young donkey, while the crowd with palm trees went out to meet Him shouting Hosanna! Blessed is He and praise to Him Who comes in the name of the Lord, even the King of Israel (John 12:12-18).  That was the same crowd who witnessed Lazarus’ resurrection – the sign He performed proving Him to be the Messiah. That was a gesture confirming His kingship. Then He headed to Jerusalem. And as He approached, He saw the city, and He wept over it, exclaiming, Would that you had known personally, even at least in this your day, the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes for a time is coming upon you when your enemies will throw up a bank about you and surround you and shut you in on every side. And they will dash you down to the ground, you and your children within you; and they will not leave in you one stone upon another, because you did not come progressively to recognize and know and understand the time of your visitation (Luke 19:41-44). That was a prophetic and last warning to Jerusalem, which happened in the year 70 A.D.

YAHSHUA knew the coming fate of Jerusalem. He approached it, weeping over it and proclaiming Jerusalem’s judgment. That was a solemn and urgent moment for the city to repent. However, there was no such thing and in a few days one of YAHSHUA’S own disciples not only betrayed Him, but delivered Him up to the Jewish authorities. He came leading a band of soldiers and some guards of the high priests and Pharisees with torches and weapons.  YAHSHUA, knowing all that was about to befall Him, went out to them and said, Whom are you seeking? They answered Him, YAHSHUA the Nazarene. YAHSHUA said to them, I am He. What happened next is beyond understanding for those who did not know YAHSHUA’S divinity. At the sound of His voice, those who had come for Him went backward and fell to the ground. They could not withstand God the Son’s power, which He expressed at that precise moment to indicate He voluntarily was giving up His life; that His life was not under human power, nor His future dependent on men’s authority, but on His Father’s power and authority. He so expressed, I lay down My life –to take it back again. No one takes it away from Me. On the contrary, I lay it down voluntarily, I am authorized and have power to lay it down and I am authorized and have power to take it back again.  These are the instructions which I have received from My Father (John 10:18). That was just a minuscule power that came from YAHSHUA, for He was still subjected to certain human limitations, although, as a choice of His own. When one of His disciples reached out his hand and drew his sword and, striking the body servant of the high priest, cut off his ear, YAHSHUA said to him, put your sword back into its place, for all who draw the sword will die by the sword. Do you suppose that I cannot appeal to My Father and He will immediately provide Me with more than twelve legions [more than 80,000] of angels. But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must come about this way?  (Matt. 26:51-54).

When the mob came for Him, He did not run nor did He deny His identity. Judas’ heart was never in harmony with the teachings of YAHSHUA. He was chosen as one of YAHSHUA’S apostles only to have Scriptures fulfilled that carried God’s plan of salvation. Satan used him to betray the Son of God, he used the Jewish authorities to deliver Him to the Gentiles, as well as the Roman soldiers to rid of YAHSHUA, but death had no power over Him, nor any other power – human or principalities. Only when He voluntarily gave it up, to take it again, did death take Him for a short period of three days based on the fact “But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must come about this way?” Isaiah prophesied, By oppression and judgment He was taken away… and they assigned Him a grave with the wicked…although He had done no violence, neither was any deceit in His mouth. Yet it was the will of the Lord to bruise Him; He has put Him to grief and made Him sick. When You (God) and He make His life an offering for sin, He shall see His offspring, He shall prolong His days, and the will and pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in His hand (Isaiah 53: 8a,9-10).

When they came asking for Him, He answered, I am He. That meant, I am the Savior of the World, I am the Lamb of God that will take away the sins of the world through the shedding of my blood- a sacrifice of love for all who will accept My sacrifice. Aren’t you glad we have a Savior Who lives forever and no one could thwart His plan to save us? Let’s lift up our hands to heaven and say to Him, Thank you Lord for Your marvelous and eternal salvation. “I was lost, but now I am found; I was blind, but now I see!”


Author: Jacinta da Cruz Rodgers

I have been committed to teaching the truth of the Word of God beginning with Trans World Radio on Bonaire, N.A and Swaziland, Africa (1969-1980), then through churches in the United States in both English and Portuguese and then through ministry in Israel (2005-2006). This ministry continues through local Bible studies and outreach to the world via the internet. I have written a book about my life from that of an orphan in Brazil to missionary in 5 countries. You can find out more on the "Book" page of our blog site.

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