Luke 22:47-62

Wednesday Evening Bible Study

May 29, 2002


This is Jesus’ final night on the earth.  He has had His Last Supper with the disciples.  They have left the city of Jerusalem and made their way back to their campground over on the Mount of Olives.  Jesus has spent the night praying in the Garden of Gethsemane.

The Road to Denial

We’re going to see the steps that Peter took when he stumbled and denied Jesus three times.


Sleeping instead of praying

The road to denying Jesus starts when we are sleeping instead of praying.
Jesus had warned the guys,
(Luke 22:40 KJV)  And when he was at the place, he said unto them, Pray that ye enter not into temptation.
But instead they had fallen asleep.  Just before the crowd arrives to arrest Jesus, once more He says,
(Luke 22:46 KJV)  And said unto them, Why sleep ye? rise and pray, lest ye enter into temptation.
It’s not that sleep is bad.  It’s that prayerlessness is bad.
How’s your prayer life?

:47-53 Jesus is arrested

:47  And while he yet spake, behold a multitude, and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them, and drew near unto Jesus to kiss him.

drew neareggizo – to bring near, to join one thing to another; to draw or come near to, to approach

to kiss phileo – to love; to treat affectionately or kindly, to welcome, befriend; to show signs of love; to kiss

Matthew tells us why Judas kissed Jesus.

(Mat 26:47-49 KJV)  And while he yet spake, lo, Judas, one of the twelve, came, and with him a great multitude with swords and staves, from the chief priests and elders of the people. {48} Now he that betrayed him gave them a sign, saying, Whomsoever I shall kiss, that same is he: hold him fast. {49} And forthwith he came to Jesus, and said, Hail, master; and kissed him.

Apparently not all of the armed guards were able to recognize Jesus by sight.  They needed to know that they had arrested the right person.

:48 But Jesus said unto him, Judas, betrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss?

a kissphilema – a kiss; the kiss with which, as a sign of fraternal affection, Christians were accustomed to welcome or dismiss their companions in the faith

betrayestparadidomi – to give into the hands (of another); to give over into (one’s) power or use; to deliver up one to custody, to be judged, condemned, punished, scourged, tormented, put to death; to deliver up treacherously; by betrayal to cause one to be taken

Betrayal is hardest when the person who is hurting you acts nice.

:49 When they which were about him saw what would follow, they said unto him, Lord, shall we smite with the sword?

shall we smitepatasso – to strike gently: as a part or a member of the body; to stroke, smite: with the sword, to afflict, to visit with evils, etc. as with a deadly disease; to smite down, cut down, to kill, slay

the swordmachaira – a large knife, used for killing animals and cutting up flesh; a small sword, as distinguished from a large sword

Keep in mind, Jesus had just told the guys that they needed to take a sword with them.

(Luke 22:36-38 KJV)  Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one. {37} For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, And he was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have an end. {38} And they said, Lord, behold, here are two swords. And he said unto them, It is enough.

:50 And one of them smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear.

smotepatasso – to strike gently: as a part or a member of the body; to stroke, smite: with the sword, to afflict, to visit with evils, etc. as with a deadly disease; to smite down, cut down, to kill, slay

cut offaphaireo – to take from, take away, remove, carry off; to cut off

one of them – Luke is being nice and withholding the name of the swordsman and the victim.  John isn’t so nice:

(John 18:10-11 KJV)  Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest's servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant's name was Malchus. {11} Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?

I wonder if Peter isn’t trying to prove himself.  When Jesus had warned Peter that Peter would deny Jesus, Peter responded by saying,
(Luke 22:33 KJV)  And he said unto him, Lord, I am ready to go with thee, both into prison, and to death.

Note:  Peter didn’t wait for Jesus to answer the question.  He just jumps out and starts swinging his sword.



The road to denying Jesus starts with self-confidence.
Test at Duke

This was taken out of Duke University’s Staff newsletter.

At Duke University, there were four sophomores taking Organic Chemistry. They did so well on all the quizzes, midterms and labs, etc., that each had an “A” so far for the semester. These four friends were so confident that the weekend before finals, they decided to go up to University of Virginia and party with some friends up there. They had a great time. However, after all the partying, they slept all day Sunday and didn’t make it back to Duke until early Monday morning. Rather than taking the final then, they decided to find their professor after the final and explain to him why they missed it. They explained that they had gone to UVA for the weekend with the plan to come to study, but, unfortunately, they had a flat tire on the way back, didn’t have a spare, and couldn’t get help for a long time. As a result, they missed the final. The Professor thought it over and then agreed they could make up the final the following day. The guys were elated and relieved. They studied that night and went in the next day at the time the professor had told them. He placed them in separate rooms and handed each of them a test booklet, and told them to begin. They looked at the first problem, worth 5 points. It was something simple about free radical formation. “Cool,” they thought at the same time, each one in his separate room, “this is going to be easy.” Each finished the problem and then turned the page. On the second page was written: (For 95 points): Which tire?

I think that one of the tests of self-confidence is found in how I look at others that are struggling.
When I get mad at others who are stumbling and think that I, myself, could never do such a thing, I’m in danger.

Matthew records Peter saying to Jesus,

(Mat 26:33 KJV)  Peter answered and said unto him, Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended.

:51 And Jesus answered and said, Suffer ye thus far. And he touched his ear, and healed him.

Suffereao – to allow, permit, let; to allow one to do as he wishes, not to restrain, to let alone

he touchedhaptomai – to fasten one’s self to, adhere to, cling to; to touch

healediaomai – to cure, heal; to make whole

Note:  The last miracle we have recorded of Jesus before His resurrection is to correct a blunder from one of His disciples.

:52 Then Jesus said unto the chief priests, and captains of the temple, and the elders, which were come to him, Be ye come out, as against a thief, with swords and staves?

which were come toparaginomai – to be present, to come near, approach; to come forth, make one’s public appearance

chief priestsarchiereus – chief priest, high priest

captainsstrategos – the commander of an army; captain of the temple, i.e. the commander of the Levites who kept guard in and around the temple

elderspresbuteros – elder, of age,; a term of rank or office; among the Jews; members of the great council or Sanhedrin (because in early times the rulers of the people, judges, etc., were selected from elderly men)

a thieflestes – a robber, plunderer, freebooter, brigand

swordsmachaira – a large knife, used for killing animals and cutting up flesh; a small sword, as distinguished from a large sword; curved sword, for a cutting stroke; a straight sword, for thrusting

stavesxulon – wood; that which is made of wood; as a beam from which any one is suspended, a gibbet, a cross; a cudgel, stick, staff

The crowd included some very important people, including the chief priests and members of the Sanhedrin.

:53 When I was daily with you in the temple, ye stretched forth no hands against me:

ye stretched forthekteino – to stretch out, stretch forth; over, towards, against one

Jesus is pointing a finger at their cowardice.  They were afraid of having Jesus arrested in front of the crowds He was drawing at the temple.  They wanted to do things secretly.  Judas’ agreement was to betray Jesus at a place away from the crowd.

(Luke 22:6 KJV)  And he promised, and sought opportunity to betray him unto them in the absence of the multitude.

:53  but this is your hour, and the power of darkness.

hourhora – a certain definite time or season fixed by natural law and returning with the revolving year; of the seasons of the year, spring, summer, autumn, winter; the daytime (bounded by the rising and setting of the sun), a day; a twelfth part of the day-time, an hour, (the twelve hours of the day are reckoned from the rising to the setting of the sun); any definite time, point of time, moment

the powerexousia – power of choice, liberty of doing as one pleases; physical and mental power; the power of authority (influence) and of right (privilege); the power of rule or government (the power of him whose will and commands must be submitted to by others and obeyed)

darknessskotos – darkness; metaph. of ignorance respecting divine things and human duties, and the accompanying ungodliness and immorality, together with their consequent misery in hell

These men wanted Jesus arrested away from the crowd, in the dark.  This is a good example of what it means to be living in “darkness”.

(John 3:16-21 KJV)  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. {17} For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. {18} He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. {19} And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. {20} For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. {21} But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.

These men didn’t want the world to know what they were doing, so they did their deeds at night.

This was Hell’s moment.  I imagine that Satan at this time was thinking he had triumphed.

And yet this was the very thing that Jesus came for – to die for us.

(Col 2:13-15 NLT)  You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ. He forgave all our sins. {14} He canceled the record that contained the charges against us. He took it and destroyed it by nailing it to Christ's cross. {15} In this way, God disarmed the evil rulers and authorities. He shamed them publicly by his victory over them on the cross of Christ.

:54-62 Peter’s denial

:54 Then took they him, and led him, and brought him into the high priest's house. And Peter followed afar off.

took theysullambano – to seize, take: one as prisoner; to seize for one’s self; in a hostile sense, to make (one a permanent) prisoner

followed akoloutheo – to follow one who precedes, join him as his attendant, accompany him; to join one as a disciple, become or be his disciple

This is the same word that is used over and over to describe people who are choosing to become Jesus’ disciples.  The first time it is found in the New Testament is in:

(Mat 4:18-20 KJV)  And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. {19} And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men. {20} And they straightway left their nets, and followed him.
Once again, Simon Peter is “following Jesus”, but not like that day on the Sea of Galilee.  Luke adds a new word to describe how Peter was “following”.

afar off makrothen – from afar, afar


Keeping your distance

The road to denying Jesus involves keeping a comfortable distance from Him.
Sometimes a person will ask a question something to the effect, “What kind of stuff can I do and still be a Christian?”
The question should never be about how far you can go from Jesus, but how close you can stay.
Jesus said,
(Mat 16:24-26 KJV)  Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. {25} For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. {26} For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?

:55 And when they had kindled a fire in the midst of the hall, and were set down together, Peter sat down among them.

had kindledhapto – to fasten to, adhere to; to fasten fire to a thing, kindle, set of fire

the hall aule –the uncovered courtyard of the house. In the O.T. particularly of the courts of the tabernacle and of the temple in Jerusalem. The dwellings of the higher classes usually had two, one exterior, between the door and the street; the other interior, surrounded by the buildings of the dwelling itself. The latter is mentioned in Mt 26:69.

were set down together sugkathizo – to cause to sit down together, place together; to sit down together

Who has sat down in the courtyard?  The soldiers that had brought Jesus to the house of the high priest.

sat downkathemai – to sit down, seat one’s self; to sit, be seated, of a place occupied

amongmesos – middle; the midst; in the midst of, amongst


Warming yourself at the enemy’s fire

The road to denying Jesus involves making yourself comfortable at the enemy’s fire.
This doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t be around those who don’t believe in Jesus.  We ought to be right in the “midst” of unbelievers, but to be there to represent Jesus, not be one of them.
We ought to be careful about finding our comfort in the things that unbelievers find comfort it.
We ought to be careful that we aren’t just trying to “blend in” with the crowd, to be just like the people in the world.

:56 But a certain maid beheld him as he sat by the fire, and earnestly looked upon him, and said, This man was also with him.

maid paidiske – a young girl, damsel; a maid-servant, a young female slave

earnestly looked upon atenizo – to fix the eyes on, gaze upon; to look into anything


It doesn’t take much

Sometimes we can fool ourselves into thinking that the toughest time to not deny Jesus is when there’s a terrorist with a gun to our head.
Yet like Peter, we get caught off guard by the smallest of circumstances.
It was just a little servant girl that got him going downhill.

:57 And he denied him, saying, Woman, I know him not.

he denied arneomai – to deny

Jesus said that a disciple was to learn to “deny himself”.  And here is Peter denying Jesus.

womangune – a woman of any age, whether a virgin, or married, or a widow

:58 And after a little while another saw him, and said, Thou art also of them. And Peter said, Man, I am not.

:59 And about the space of one hour after another confidently affirmed, saying, Of a truth this fellow also was with him: for he is a Galilaean.

confidently affirmeddiischurizomai – to lean upon; to affirm stoutly, assert confidently

he is a Galilaean – Peter spoke with a distinct accent that marked him as being from Galilee.

Mt 26:73  And after a while came unto [him] they that stood by, and said to Peter, Surely thou also art [one] of them; for thy speech bewrayeth thee.

:60 And Peter said, Man, I know not what thou sayest. And immediately, while he yet spake, the cock crew.

immediately parachrema – immediately, forthwith, instantly

With the cock crowing immediately, Peter’s words were still fresh in his mind.  He could still hear his own words ringing in his ear as the cock began to crow.

:61 And the Lord turned, and looked upon Peter. And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.

turnedstrepho – to turn, turn around

looked upon emblepo – to turn one’s eyes on; look at

This isn’t just a casual glance.  Jesus knows exactly what has just happened.  He turns to look at Peter and sees that Peter knows what has just happened.

I think this probably was the bitterest of all things, not only to have denied Jesus, but to see His face as He turns to look at you.

Chuck Smith:

Now, how did Jesus look at Peter?  I do not think it was a... “Peter, how could you look?”  Nor do I think it was a... “I told you so!” look.  Someone came up to me this morning, and they had been in the fellowship hall where you get a close-up.  And they noticed this spot on my head.  And they said, “Tell your wife to be more gentle with you.”  And I said, “Would you believe that I bumped it on a cupboard door in the kitchen?”  I was messing around in the kitchen and I had left the upper cupboard door open slightly and, you know, wasn’t looking or paying attention and “whamo!”  And here I saw that skin and flesh on the corner of the door. And my dear wife, when she saw my head, said, “I’ve told you to close those doors!”  Oh, the sympathy I get.  I think that the look that Jesus gave Peter was, “Peter, I understand.  I understand, Peter.  I love you still, Peter.”  I think it was a look of love; perhaps the deepest love that Peter had ever observed in one’s eyes.  The understanding of Jesus. More of less, “That’s alright, Peter.  I understand.”

rememberedhupomimnesko – to cause one to remember, bring to remembrance, recall to mind: to another; to put one in remembrance, admonish, of something; to be reminded, to remember

:62 And Peter went out, and wept bitterly.

went outexerchomai – to go or come forth of

wept klaio – to mourn, weep, lament; to weep audibly, cry as a child

bitterlypikros – bitterly; metaph. with poignant grief


It isn’t over

For Peter, it may have seemed that this was the worst moment of his life.  It may have seemed that he was now utterly worthless, having denied His Lord.
Jesus had warned Peter earlier in the evening,
(Luke 22:31-32 KJV)  And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: {32} But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.

Peter was being sifted, but Jesus was praying for Him.

It seems Jesus’ look at Peter brought great shame and conviction.  But I wonder if part of the look wasn’t filled with “I’m praying for you Peter”.

Peter had denied Jesus three times.
After the resurrection, Jesus sought out Peter.

(John 21:15-17 KJV)  So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs. {16} He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep. {17} He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.

Why would Jesus ask Peter three times if he loved Him?

I don’t believe it was because Jesus didn’t believe Peter.

I believe Jesus was helping Peter get over the denial.  I believe Jesus was helping Peter renew the love relationship that they had.  I don’t think it was a coincidence that Jesus asks Peter three times.  I think this is probably why Peter is uncomfortable when Jesus asks him three times.

Jesus gives us another chance.