The “I Am” Arrested

Peter Barnes: John 18:1-11 NO AUDIO

(9 June 2019)


Calvin says of John: ‘this Gospel is a key to open the door to understanding the others’. J. C. Ryle called it ‘the most precious book in the Bible’.

1. The treachery of Judas.

– 18:1-5. Judas had already slipped out (13:29-30). Probably we are dealing with hundreds of soldiers. Recall the 470 soldiers used to take Paul to Caesarea – Acts 23:23.

– the ‘son of perdition’ or ‘son of destruction’ – 17:12. His privileges did not keep him from treachery.

2. The impulsiveness of Peter.

– 18:10. Peter is a true Christian, but this is hare-brained (cf. Luke 22:38). Jesus rebukes Peter – John 18:11a. All along Peter failed to comprehend the cross – see Matt.16:21-23.

3. The divine love of Jesus.

(a) He knows all – read 18:4; also John 2:23-25; 6:64; 13:1, 3; 21:17-19a.

(b) He speaks the divine name – 18:4-6. Jesus’ answer is literally Ἐγώ εἰμι., which means ‘I am’ (see John 8:24)..

(c) He keeps His own – 18:7-9 and John 17:12

(d) He drinks the cup of sorrow and wrath to save His people – 18:11; see Ps.75:8; Isa.51:15-17; Jer.25:15; Rev.14:10; 16:19.

In the darkness of this world, with a large hostile cohort of soldiers, a treacherous apostle (Judas) and an impulsive, well-intentioned but uncomprehending one (Peter), Jesus stands out – He knows all, He is divine, He keeps and protects His own, and on the cross has drunk the cup of God’s fury against sinners.