Gospels in 40 Days – April 13
Welcome to our study of the gospels during the Lenten season. Lent is the Christian tradition of preparing for the resurrection of Jesus by taking intentional steps to grow closer to God during the 40 days before Easter. The tradition mirrors Jesus going into the wilderness to fast and pray for 40 days, where he was tempted by Satan but was able to resist, strengthen, and grow his ministry for the days ahead (Matthew 4). Typical Lenten observances include fasting, repentance, moderation, self-denial, and spiritual discipline.
To join the study, pick a reading plan to follow, journal on the day’s reading using the SOAP method of Bible study (see “What’s SOAP?” on our website for details), and check in for daily posts from our study leaders. We hope you will join us this season, intentionally stepping toward God!
John was one of Jesus’ closest apostles. He often referred to himself in his gospel as the disciple Jesus loved. He was also pretty young when he walked with Jesus and watched him die on the cross, and he later played a large role in the expansion of Christianity, penning 1, 2, and 3 John and Revelation as well as his gospel and pastoring a church in Ephesus. His gospel is the most relational of the four gospels as it best describes who Jesus is and helps us to know him better.
Clicking on the following links will take you to the Bible Gateway website where you can read the NIV version of today’s reading:
ALL OF IT: John 18
MOST OF IT: John 19
HIGHLIGHT REEL: John 19:16-30
Where is your place where you go to meet with Jesus?
The Garden | Becky Newman
John 18:1-2 – When he had finished praying, Jesus left with his disciples and crossed the Kidron Valley. On the other side there was a garden, and he and his disciples went into it. Now Judas, who betrayed him, knew the place, because Jesus had often met there with his disciples.
After the Last Supper, Jesus and his apostles went to a garden. Jesus had just prayed a beautiful prayer for himself, the apostles, and all believers to come, and he was going to the garden to pray some more (Luke 22). This garden was a place he went to often enough that Judas knew he would be there. Jesus, better than anyone, knew God is present everywhere, so why is this location of the garden more significant to him? It seems to be a place where he felt closer to God and reminds me of another garden. Jesus was there “in the beginning” (John 17:5) and experienced the perfect Garden of Eden where God walked with His people. Maybe there was a similar connection in this garden. Some internet research said the Garden of Gethsemane was an olive tree grove (see pic) with a natural grotto near it which is where Jesus and his apostles may have camped while they were in Jerusalem. So then, they would have returned here every night, which is why Judas knew where they would be.
I love gardening, getting my hands dirty, growing stuff that is beautiful and can be eaten, and just enjoying Your creation. I feel closer to You in the garden, so I get why Jesus was drawn there right before his arrest. I get why his prayers in the garden were so much more emotional and deeply personal. In the garden, I find myself in right relationship to You. You are the Creator and Sustainer, and You gave this to me in the beginning — “‘I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food’…And it was so.” (Genesis 1:29-30) You put us here to work the earth and take care of it (Genesis 2:15), which includes taking care of its people. The garden is where I can be who and do what You intended for me.
Thank You for speaking right to my heart today and thank You for all the opportunities You’ve given me to garden for Your glory. I am most satisfied and at peace when I am in my right place in relation to You, just like You intended in the garden, and just like how Jesus came to You in the garden. And how awesome that tonight, Holy Thursday, the night we remember Jesus praying in that garden, I get to be at the garden, earth-caring and people-caring for You! I will be praying too. Thank You for the blessings of fruit and harvest!
The Discover One Thing main website follows a reading plan that goes through the entire Bible in one year. Click HERE to check out today’s Discover One Thing post.
Posted on April 13, 2017, in Uncategorized and tagged Bible, Bible Study, close, garden, Gethsemane, gospel, intention, Jesus, John, Lent, prayer, purpose, relationship, SOAP. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.