18:1 When 1 Jesus had spoken these words, he went forth with his disciples over the brook Cedron, where was a garden, into the which he entered, and his disciples.
(1) Christ goes of his own accord into a garden, which his betrayer knew, to be taken, so that by his obedience he might take away the sin that entered into the world by one mans rebellion, and that in a garden. 18:3 2 Judas then, having received a band [of men] and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, cometh thither with lanterns and torches and weapons.
(2) Christ who was innocent was taken as a wicked person, that we who are wicked might be let go as innocent. 18:4 3 Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon him, went forth, and said unto them, Whom seek ye?
(3) Christs person (but not his power) was bound by his adversaries, but only when and how he desired. 18:8 4 Jesus answered, I have told you that I am [he]: if therefore ye seek me, let these go their way:
(4) Christ does not neglect the office of a good pastor, not even in his greatest danger. 18:10 5 Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priests servant, and cut off his right ear. The servants name was Malchus.
(5) We ought to contain our zeal for God within the bounds of our calling. 18:13 6 And led him away to Annas first; for he was father in law to Caiaphas, which was the high priest that same year.
(6) Christ is brought before an earthly high priest to be condemned for our blasphemies, that we might be acquitted by the everlasting high Priest himself. 18:15 7 And Simon Peter followed Jesus, and [so did] another disciple: that disciple was known unto the high priest, and went in with Jesus into the palace of the high priest.
(7) A graphic example of the fragility of men, even the best of them, when they are left to themselves. 18:19 8 The high priest then asked Jesus of his disciples, and of his doctrine.
(8) Christ defends his cause, but only slightly, not that he would withdraw himself from death, but to show that he was condemned as someone who was innocent. 18:25 9 And Simon Peter stood and warmed himself. They said therefore unto him, Art not thou also [one] of his disciples? He denied [it], and said, I am not.
(9) After men have once fallen, they cannot only not lift themselves up by their own strength, but also they fall more and more into a worse condition, until they are raised up again by a new power from God. 18:28 10 Then led they Jesus from a Caiaphas unto the hall of judgment: and it was early; and they themselves went not into the judgment hall, lest they should be defiled; but that they might eat the passover.
18:31 Then said Pilate unto them, Take ye him, and judge him according to your law. The Jews therefore said unto him, b It is not lawful for us to put any man to death:
(10) The Son of God is brought before the judgment seat of an earthly and profane man, in whom there is found much less wickedness than in the rulers of the people of God. A graphic image of the wrath of God against sin, and in addition of his great mercy, and last of all of his most severe judgment against the stubborn condemners of his grace when it is offered unto them.
(a) From Caiaphas house.
(b) For judgments of life and death were taken from them forty years before the destruction of the temple. 18:32 That the saying of Jesus might be fulfilled, which he spake, c signifying what death he should die.
(c) For Christ had foretold that he would be crucified. 18:36 11 Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.
18:38 12 Pilate saith unto him, d What is truth? And when he had said this, he went out again unto the Jews, and saith unto them, I find in him no fault [at all].
(11) Christ affirms his spiritual kingdom, but rejects a worldly one.
18:40 Then e cried they all again, saying, Not this man, but Barabbas. Now Barabbas was a robber.
(12) It was required that Christ should be pronounced innocent, but nonetheless, in that he took upon himself our person, he was to be condemned as a most wicked man.
(d) He speaks this disdainfully and scoffingly, and not by way of asking a question.
(e) Literally, "made a great and foul voice".