Luke 22—Never Give up on Prayer
In Luke 22, God continued to move forward with His plan of redemption through Jesus for all who believe. Specifically, in this chapter, we live with Jesus through Jesus’s last hours before His horrific crucifixion. Jesus will suffer agonizing mockery and beatings yet He continued to prepare His disciples for what lay ahead. Jesus teaches them, loves them, and gives them hope, strength, and encouragement to pray and stay away from temptations especially during the dark hours that lay ahead.
As the chapter unfolds, Judas had decided to betray Jesus but nevertheless joined Jesus and his fellow disciples at a last meal. Here Jesus called him out as a betrayer and gave Judas a last chance to change his heart. The disciples still argued about who among them was the greatest so that Jesus had to correct their thinking. He focused them on servanthood in His kingdom and the hope they would have at His kingdom’s table. Jesus reminded Peter of his leadership as the Rock that would strengthen his brothers after Peter’s repentance.
Shortly thereafter at the Mount of Olives, Jesus prayed an agonizing prayer, and then Jesus reminded His disciples to pray so they would not give in to temptation.
To the sorrow of both Judas and Peter, both men gave into temptation: one to betraying Jesus and the other to denying Jesus. The other ten disciples also gave into the temptation and feelings of defeat after Jesus was crucified when they went into hiding—that is until Jesus restored them when they saw His victory over death and trusted Him for forgiveness and grace.
What struck me in this chapter was Jesus’s love and continual call on all of us to pray and avoid temptations. At the most difficult hour for Him, He prayed and He reminded His disciples and us to pray that we do not give in to temptations and then give up in those dark times over those long periods. Too often, when I have prayed the same kind of prayer over years for God’s help and healing for myself and for others, I have been tempted to give up. In this chapter, God encouraged me to continue to pray and ask Him what He wants to reveal to me during this waiting period and to give me understanding when He answers.