Read Luke 21

Highlights:

The widow's mite; signs of the end; return of the Lord; plot against Jesus; Jesus' last Passover; Lord's Supper; Jesus' arrest; Peter's denial.

Saying, Father, if Thou be willing, remove this cup from Me: nevertheless not My will, but Thine, be done (Luke 22:42).

On the last night of our Lord's earthly ministry, Jesus did not sleep. Instead, He went . . . to the mount of Olives; and His disciples also followed Him . . . He said unto them, Pray that ye enter not into temptation. And He was withdrawn from them about a stone's cast, and kneeled down, and prayed (22:39-41). First kneeling, then falling on His face before His Father, He was exceedingly sorrowful unto death (Matt. 26:38-39). As our key verse says, He prayed intensely to know the Father's will. How long He remained in prayer we do not know, but His prayer was no brief ritual. And being in an agony He prayed more earnestly: and His sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground (22:44).

Jesus knew that a holy Father must turn His back on Him, His only begotten Son (John 3:16), if he accepted the penalty for all the sins of the world.

That very night Jesus began the fulfillment of His mission as He started the journey that would ultimately lead to Calvary's cross. Worthy is the Lamb that was slain (Rev. 5:12). The Redeemer at that moment asked the Father if the cross was the only means of gaining forgiveness for sins and saving the souls of unnumbered millions who would confess Him as Lord. Could God in His unlimited power have another way of reconciliation? God answered His prayer, not by removing the crisis, but by supplying the strength to bear it. He gave Jesus the strength to fulfill the mission He was meant to complete. Beyond this garden prayer experience, the cross was waiting.

And being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in Heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Phil. 2:8-11)

Thought for Today:

Have you been to Jesus for His cleansing power? Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?

Cross References:

For Luke 21:27: See Dan. 7:13. Luke 22:37: See Is. 53:12. Luke 22:69: See Ps. 110:1.

Word Studies:

21:4 penury, poverty; 21:13 shall turn to you for a testimony, will turn out to be an opportunity to tell the Good News; 21:15 to gainsay, to refute, to refuse; 21:34 surfeiting, overindulgence; 22:39 wont, in the habit of.

Prayer Needs:

Pray for Staff: Beth Carlton • Pray for Government Officials: Rep. Bruce L. Braley (IA), Rep. Joe Heck (NV), and Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr. (NJ) • Country: Bolivia (8 million) in South America • Major languages: Spanish and Quechua • Religious freedom • 92% Roman Catholic; 3% Protestant; 3% Baha'i • Prayer Suggestion: Pray and call upon the Lord with assurance that He will answer if you pray with a godly spirit free from sin (Is. 58:9-11).

Memory Verse for the Week: Psalms 119:33-34