The Gospel of Luke, Chapter 22, Part 1

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The Gospel of Luke, Chapter 22, Part 1 - Christogenea on Talkshoe 12-07-2012

Last week, in presenting the second half of Luke chapter 21, we saw that the so-called diaspora of the jews, which in reality did not occur for the most part until after the Bar Kokhba Rebellion against Rome circa 136 AD, was really the diaspora of the enemies of God and Christ. We saw that in the language used not only by Christ Himself in Luke chapter 21, but where the same language was used of all those people of Judah who were to be given over to the “bad figs” described in Jeremiah chapters 24 and 29, the remnant of Judah in Jerusalem which was not taken away earlier by the Assyrians, but had been taken later by the Babylonians. These people who were to be given over to the bad figs are, ostensibly, those people of Judah who later race-mixed with the Kenites and Canaanites and Edomites who were the bad figs which had infiltrated the Kingdom from the earliest times. The Jews are not the people of God, they are the enemies of God. For this same reason the apostle Paul, in Romans chapter 9, distinguished between the true Israelites in Israel and those which were not of Israel, between the Israelites who are the vessels of mercy, and the Edomites who are the vessels of destruction. 

Luke 21: “20 But when you see Jerusalem being surrounded by armies, then you know that her desolation has come near. 21 Then those in Judaea must flee into the mountains, and those in her midst must leave the land, and those in the countryside must not enter into her! [Discussing the first part of Luke chapter 21, we saw that after a first siege by Cestius, as Josephus records, the city populated with many wicked people, the better and most eminent citizens 'swam away from the city, as from a ship when it was going to sink', and surely many of them had been heeding the prophetic warnings of Christ given here, warnings which only Christians would have had. (See Josephus’ Wars, 2:556.)] 22 Because these are the days of vengeance, by which all the things written are to be fulfilled! [All the things such as Jeremiah's prophecy that Jerusalem would be smashed as a broken bottle never to be made whole again.] 23 Woe to those having conceived and to those with sucklings in those days! For there shall be great violence upon the earth, and wrath for this people! 24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword and they shall be taken away captive into all nations, and Jerusalem shall be tread upon by the heathens until the times of the heathens should be fulfilled.” Yahweh said in Jeremiah “9 And I will deliver them to be removed into all the kingdoms of the earth for their hurt, to be a reproach and a proverb, a taunt and a curse, in all places whither I shall drive them.” When a Christian lays his eyes upon a Jew, he should see the Jew as a reproach and a taunt and a curse. Why do today's Christians worship the people of God's curse? People who are not even truly Judah because they are mixed with the blood of the accursed Cain, the accursed Canaan, and the accursed Esau, and many other races since their dispersion? Why are Christians honoring devils?

Finishing Luke chapter 21, where the narrative corresponds with Matthew chapter 24, there are some major differences in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke at this point. Matthew records the warnings of Christ concerning the time of the end, which would be “as the days of Noah”. Luke had already recorded a similar discourse by Christ in chapter 17 of his gospel. Matthew also records the words of Christ which relate a parable concerning a “faithful and wise servant”, and the Parable of the Ten Virgins, and another parable contrasting productive and useless servants, and then the Parable of the Sheep and the Goat Nations. That Luke did not record these things and Matthew did only means that Luke's witnesses did not have these things in the records which Luke used, while Matthew was one of the original twelve and in all likelihood he witnessed those things personally. Mark records only a part of the warnings of Christ concerning the time of the end which appear at the end of Matthew chapter 24, and none of the parables of Matthew chapter 25. Evidently, although Mark had recorded Peter's gospel, neither did he have records of the parables of Matthew 25. With Matthew chapter 26, Mark chapter 14 and Luke chapter 22 we see the accounts again coincide, however they also record these events about to be described from different perspectives. The witness of all three accounts are necessary in order to acquire a more complete picture of the events.

The Gospel of Luke, Chapter 22

1 Then approached the feast of unleavened bread which is called Passover. [Actually τῶν ἀζύμων is “of the unleavened things”, where “bread” is inferred as attested to by all of the lexicons. However the Hebrew word se'or (Strong's 7603) refers to the yeast itself, and the children of Israel were commanded to remove all of it from their homes for the feast and the Passover, in Exodus chapters 12 and 13. The leaven was also used in the making of both beer and wine.] 2 And the high priests and the scribes were seeking how they should destroy Him, for they feared the people. 3 But the Adversary had approached Ioudas who is called Iskarioth, being of the number of the twelve.

Many people want to imagine a spiritual Satan entering into the body of Judas at this point, but the text does not demand such an interpretation. Here the word is translated, since the Hebrew form of satan means adversary when it is used as a noun. The Greek word translated as approached here is a form of the verb εἰσέρχομαι (1525), a word which appears approximately 190 times in scripture. The word is literally to go in or into, to enter or to come in. The 9th edition of the Liddell & Scott Greek-English Lexicon shows that the word was also used in the sense of to consult or to come before, as of a court. Here I have written approached, the verb being in the Aorist tense, purposely in order to show that a supernatural event including some Satanic spirit-being is not what is necessarily inferred. The Adversary here may have been any one of those men in Judaea who were opposed to Christ and had long been plotting against Him. I chose to capitalize the word since the Substantive seems to suggest a particular adversary, i.e. one of a certain class or sort. Examples where the same word is used may be found in Luke's writing at Luke 1:28, where a messenger of Yahweh entered into (the King James Version has came in unto) Mary, meaning that he went into her house and spoke to her, and again of Ananias’ coming in (KJV) to Paul at Acts 9:12, of the messenger coming in (KJV) to Cornelius at Acts 10:3, and of Paul’s having went in unto (KJV) the Thessalonians at Acts 17:2.

4 And departing he [Judas Iscariot] had spoken with the high priests and the officers, how he may betray Him to them.

The word στρατηγός (4755) may be officers or generals. The Codex Ephraemi Syri (C) has “with the high priests and the scribes and the officers of the temple”; the Codex Bezae (D) has only “with the high priests”; the text follows the Codices Sinaiticus (א), Alexandrinus (A), Vaticanus (B), and the Majority Text. (See Luke 22:52).

5 And they were delighted, and they conspired to give him money. 6 And having agreed, he then sought a good opportunity to betray Him to them, apart from the crowd.

The Codices Sinaiticus (א) and Ephraemi Syri (C) want the words “and having agreed”. The Gospel of Matthew records the account of this period much more fully. At the beginning of Matthew chapter 26, Christ is recorded as having explained that it was two days before the Passover, and that He was then going to be crucified. It is not entirely clear which Passover Luke was referring to in the beginning of this chapter, however in Matthew since Christ attends a feast in Bethania in the interim, He must be referring to the Passover which He celebrates with His disciples, and not the Passover of the Judaeans which is clearly celebrated on a different day. Then we read in Matthew: “3 At that time the high priests and the elders of the people gathered together in the court of the high priest who is called Kaïaphas, 4 and they took counsel that with guile they shall seize and kill Yahshua. 5 But they said: 'Not on the feast, in order that there would not be a tumult among the people!'” Even though the priests expressed the desire that Yahshua not be slain on the feast, that is what happened anyway. It is the prescience of Yahweh God that Christ would indeed be the Passover Lamb even though His murderers did not desire it in that manner.

Following this in Matthew we see the record where Christ attends the dinner in the home of Simon the Leper, not recorded here in Luke but corroborated by both Mark and John. Then a different perspective of the account of Judas' betrayal of Christ is given, where we read from Matthew 26:14: “14 Then one of the twelve, he who is called Ioudas Iskarioth, going to the high priests 15 said “What do you want to give me, and I shall betray Him to you?” And they appointed for him thirty silver pieces. 16 And from that time he sought an opportunity that he could betray Him.” However in Matthew's account we do not see that the Adversary approached Judas first, so it may appear on the surface that Judas took the initiative on his own. It does not make Judas any less culpable, however the fuller account that we get from all of the witnesses shows us that he was first approached by the Adversary. Only from the account of Matthew do we see the mention of the thirty pieces of silver, by which we may clearly connect the betrayal of Christ to the prophecy of Zechariah chapter 11.

Zechariah 11:10-13: “10 And I took my staff, even Beauty, and cut it asunder, that I might break my covenant which I had made with all the people. [This designates the end of the Old Covenant in the death of Christ.] 11 And it was broken in that day: and so the poor of the flock that waited upon me knew that it was the word of the LORD. [This describes the good people of Judaea who understood the prophecies concerning the Christ.] 12 And I said unto them, If ye think good, give me my price; and if not, forbear. So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver. 13 And the LORD said unto me, Cast it unto the potter: a goodly price that I was prised at of them. And I took the thirty pieces of silver, and cast them to the potter in the house of the LORD. [This was the price of His betrayal.]

While the prophecy in Zechariah chapter 11 is quite enigmatic, it was explained in full detail in the context of Scripture when Matthew chapter 26 was presented here last year. It is evident that the thirty pieces of silver are cast to the potter in the temple. In Matthew chapter 27 we learn that Judas in his consternation actually did so, in effect, where he cast the thirty pieces into the temple, and they were ultimately used to purchase a field from a potter for the burial of strangers. Zechariah chapter 11 connects the thirty silver pieces and the breaking of the Old Covenant - which can only happen upon the death of Yahweh in Christ – which Paul explains in a different manner in Romans chapter 7.

7 And the day of the unleavened bread had come [the Codex Bezae (D) has Passover], in which it was necessary to sacrifice the Passover. [This is the day before the preparation day of the Judaeans upon which they prepared their Passover, obviously a different date where we see a divergence in the calendar at this time.] 8 And He sent off Petros and Iohannes, saying “Going prepare for us the Passover in order that we may eat.” 9 But they said to Him: “Where do You wish that we should prepare it?”

The Codex Vaticanus (B) has “Where do You wish that we should prepare for You to eat the Passover?” The Codex Bezae (D) “Where do You wish that we should prepare it for You?”

10 So He said to them: “Behold, upon your going into the city, a man shall meet with you, carrying a jar of water. Follow him into the house which he goes into, 11 and you say to the master of that house: ‘The Teacher says to you, Where are the quarters [literally the lodge] where I shall eat the Passover with My students?’ 12 And he shall show you a spacious furnished upper room. There you shall prepare it.” 13 Then departing they found just as He spoke to them, and they prepared the Passover.

Here once again we see the prescience of Christ which only God Himself can have, and which only God can impart. As Yahweh pronounced in Isaiah chapter 41: “Shew the things that are to come hereafter, that we may know that ye are gods”. This prescience of God which was in Christ is written into the Gospels quite prosaically, as if the apostles had taken it for granted that He was able to have foreknowledge of such things. It was never remarked upon, it was never marveled over, yet the apostles recorded it as if it were natural to Yahshua Christ the man.

There is something else to notice in accounts such as this, which is also evident elsewhere in the Bible. We struggle between the ideas of the free will of man, and predestination and the sovereignty of God. In truth, men do seem to have free will, and we must blame our mistakes on nobody but ourselves, because even if Yahweh knows of them long in advance, when we make them we agree to make them. Yahweh, being God, cannot help but have known from the beginning every path that each and every one of us would take in the course of our lives. He knew long ahead of time all of our actions and all of our mistakes, just as we have Esau for a model, that He hated Esau even before he was born, knowing – as Paul explains – that Esau was a profane man and a fornicator. So in our perception, we have free will and we are responsible for our own sin – and we seek a reward for what we have done well. However in truth, all of these things which we experience have been determined by Yahweh our God from the very beginning, and all things work out well for those of us who love Him despite the trials we face in this life.

14 And when the hour had come, He reclined and the ambassadors with Him.

The ancient Greeks did not sit on chairs at a table. Rather, they took their meals reclining upon small couches. Therefore the verb, which literally means to recline, is rendered in that manner. The Codices Alexandrinus (A), Ephraemi Syri (C), Washingtonensis (W) and the Majority Text all have “twelve ambassadors”; the text follows the Codices Sinaiticus (א), Vaticanus (B) and Bezae (D), and the third century papyrus P75.

15 And He said to them “With longing have I desired to eat this Passover with you, before that which I am to suffer. 16 For I say to you that by no means shall I eat this until when it shall be fulfilled in the Kingdom of Yahweh.”

The words “with longing” are from the Dative case of the noun, ἐπιθυμία (1939); the words I have desired from a tense of the verb ἐπιθυμέω (1937), two different forms of the same word. The phrase rendered “before that which I am to suffer” is literally “before that for me to suffer”.

The Codex Alexandrinus (A) has “by no means shall I eat from of this”; the Codex Ephraemi Syri (C) “by no means shall I eat this any longer”; the Codex Bezae (D) “not any longer shall I eat from this until when it is eaten anew”; the Codex Washingtonensis (W) and the Majority Text “by no means shall I eat from of this any longer”; the text follows the Codices Sinaiticus (א), Vaticanus (B) and the third century papyrus P75 (in part, part is illegible here).

17 And taking a cup, blessing it He said “Take this and divide it for yourselves. 18 For I say to you, by no means shall I drink from the produce of the vine from now until when the Kingdom of Yahweh should come.”

The Kingdom comes to us, not we to it.

Psalm 115: “13 I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the LORD. 14 I will pay my vows unto the LORD now in the presence of all his people. 15 Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.”

The Codices Alexandrinus (A), Ephraemi Syri (C) and the Majority Text want the words “from now”; the text follows the Codices Sinaiticus (א),Vaticanus (B), Washingtonensis (W), the third century papyrus P75, and the Bezae (D) which varies slightly. The words show that Christ had not necessarily abstained from the produce of the vine beforehand, as certain commentators often like to assert.

The Codex Bezae is missing most of the following passage, which in that manuscript ends at the word “body” in verse 19, wanting what remains.

19 And taking bread, blessing it He broke it and gave it to them saying “This is My body, which on behalf of you is being given. This you do for My recollection.” 20 And in like manner the cup while eating, saying “This is the cup of the New Covenant by My blood which on your behalf is being spilled.

John did not think it important enough to record this event of Yahshua's breaking the bread and distributing the wine at the table. That alone diminishes any credibility it has a ritual compulsory for salvation, which is a ridiculous Romish church contrivance. The account in Mark is very much like the account given here by Matthew, where in chapter 26 it says “26 Then upon their eating, Yahshua taking and blessing the wheat-bread broke it and giving it to the students said: 'You take it, eat, this is My body.' 27 And taking a cup and giving thanks gave it to them, saying: 'All of you drink from it, 28 for this is My blood of the covenant which on account of many is being poured out for a remission of errors. 29 But I say to you, by no means shall I drink even now from this produce of the vine until that day when I shall drink it with you anew in the kingdom of My Father!'” Yet there is nothing in any of the gospels that would make this a compulsory ritual and a commandment for Christians relating to salvation. Rather, Luke only repeated the words of Christ which the other Gospel writers did not even record, which state “This you do for My recollection”.

How did Paul interpret these words? In 1 Corinthians chapter 10 Paul asked “16 The cup of eulogy which we bless, is it not fellowship of the blood of Christ? The wheat-bread which we break, is it not fellowship of the body of Christ? 17 Because one loaf, one body, we the many are, for we all partake from the one loaf.” The word translated as communion in the King James Version is the common Greek word meaning fellowship. At 1 Corinthians 11:22 Paul asked “Now do you not have houses in which to eat and to drink? ” This was in response to what he said in verse 20, that “...of your gathering into one place, it is not to eat the supper of the Prince.” Christians did not gather publicly for communion, rather just as Christ and the apostles, communion was a private meal shared in one's own home with one's own kith and kin! Paul said, from 1 Corinthians 11:23, “23 For I have received from the Prince that which I have also transmitted to you, that Prince Yahshua, in the night in which He had been handed over, took wheat-bread 24 and giving thanks He broke it and said, 'This is My body which is for you; this you do in remembrance of Me.' 25 In like manner also the cup, along with the dinner saying, 'This cup is the New Covenant in My blood: this you do, as often as you may drink, in remembrance of Me.' 26 Indeed as often as you may eat this wheat-bread, and you may drink this cup, you declare the death of the Prince, until He should come.” So every meal that a Christian has is communion: we share with our brethren and we give thanks to God, and that is all that is asked of us! The false Romish Church communion ritual only makes an excuse to have a professional priesthood, that they may rule over our faith. None of that is scriptural. It is also evident from Paul, that the real body and blood of Christ are not on the table, but rather they are those sitting around the table! As the food is the sustenance of the body, Christ is the Bread of Life and the sustenance of our souls.

21 “But behold! The hand of he betraying Me is upon the table with Mine! 22 For the Son of Man shall go in accordance with that which is appointed, but woe to that man by whom He is betrayed!” 23 And they began to dispute among themselves who then it could be from among them who is going to do this thing.

Psalm 41:9: “Yea, mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat of my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me.”

It is only from the version of this account recorded in the Gospel of John that we see several other facets of this event. Here are John 13:18-27: “'18 I do not speak concerning all of you. I know the ones I have chosen. But in order that the Scripture may be fulfilled, ‘He eating My bread has raised his heel against Me!’ [Christ called Judas a devil as it is recorded in John chapter 6.] 19 Right now I say to you before that which is to happen, so that you may believe it when it happens, that I am! [Here He again asserts His identification with Yahweh.] 20 Truly, truly I say to you, he receiving the ones whom I should send receives Me, and he receiving Me receives He who has sent Me!' 21 Saying these things Yahshua was troubled in Spirit and testified and said: 'Truly, truly I say to you that one from among you shall betray Me.' 22 The students looked at each other, being puzzled concerning whom He speaks. 23 There was reclining in the bosom of Yahshua one from among His students whom Yahshua loved. [John does not mention his own name.] Therefore Simon Petros motions to him to inquire about whom it could be concerning whom He speaks. 25 Then he reclining thusly upon the breast of Yahshua says to Him 'Prince, who is it?' 26 Yahshua replied: 'It is he for whom I shall dip a morsel and give it to him.' [Matthew and Mark both have “He dipping with Me into the same bowl!” Luke has “The hand of he betraying Me is upon the table with Mine!” All three versions may easily have been true, throughout the course of a longer conversation. Throughout the course of an entire meal, there was certainly more dialogue than any of the four Gospels actually leaves us a record of.] Then having dipped a morsel He gave it to Ioudas the son of Simon Iskarioth. 27 And after the morsel then the Adversary entered into him. [Here John seems to convey the idea of a spiritual Satan, or a demonic being. While that is a possibility, it also seems to be John's way of saying that at this time, the thought of this being the opportune moment to betray Christ, which Judas was seeking, had now arisen in his mind. The verb is that same word, εἰσέρχομαι, that we see at Luke 22:3. however its appearance here in John has no bearing on the comments made describing its use in that passage of Luke.] Therefore Yahshua says to him: 'That which you shall do, do quickly!'”

Having the breaking of the bread, the serving of the wine, and the identification of the betrayer recorded in their gospels in the exact reverse order as the gospel of Luke, the account of the events of the last supper as recorded by both Matthew and Mark ends here. Of course, that is not to say that the other events did not happen, but only that neither Mark nor Matthew recorded them. The events of this Passover meal as they are recorded by John, although in some ways much more complete than the record provided by Luke, nevertheless corroborate what Luke has recorded here.

24 Then also there was a rivalry among them, which of them is supposed to be the greater.

The apostles are certainly to be respected, however they too were men, and they had all of the faults found in men. Here it is demonstrated that they displayed a worldly attitude even after having been with Christ for most of His three-and-a-half year ministry.

In the Gospel of Mark in chapter 9 and in the Gospel of Matthew at the beginning of chapter 18 we see an event which reflected this rivalry which was recorded as having occurred in Capernaum. Mark portrays the event in Capernaum as if the apostles were contending with one another, where Matthew records them as asking Christ who would be greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven without any specific reference to themselves. The record of this event in Luke chapter 9, verses 46 through 50, corresponds more closely to the version of the event as it was recorded by Mark. Again in the Gospel of Mark in chapter 10 we see another and separate event reflecting this rivalry, instigated by the question asked of Christ by the sons of Zebedee, or as Matthew records that same event in chapter 20 of his gospel, by the mother of the sons of Zebedee. That event is not recorded by Luke.

Without reference to any of the apostles, in the Gospel of Matthew in chapter 23 similar ideas are expressed once again where Christ is upbraiding the scribes and Pharisees for their hypocrisy.

This record here in Luke 22:24, where the apostle says “then also there was a rivalry among them, which of them is supposed to be the greater ”, records not any specific event but only acknowledges that the apostles had indeed been contending with one another in such a manner, which is evident from the aforementioned passages from Matthew and Mark. There is no conflict with Luke's record here and the other Gospels. Rather, Luke only explains the reason for this part of the discourse of Christ which he records here. At this point in John's gospel, the fact that Christ addressed this rivalry is verified, and John takes it much further than Luke did, by recording the washing of the feet of the apostles by Yahshua which was obviously performed by Him as a model example in response to that rivalry among the apostles. First to proceed with Luke:

25 And He [Christ] said to them: “The kings of the nations rule over them, and those having authority over them are called ‘benefactors’. 26 But not so with you. Rather he who is greater among you must be as the inferior, and he who is leader as the servant. 27 For who is greater, he dining or he serving? Is it not he who is reclining? But I in the midst of you am as he serving!

That Luke recorded these things here even if it does not fully attest, it at least in turn corroborates, and is corroborated by, the next event which occurred here but which is recorded only in the Gospel of John, which is the washing of the feet of the disciples by Christ. Here is John 13:4-17: “4 He rises from dinner and lays aside His garments and taking a cloth girds Himself. 5 Then He puts water into the water-basin, and began to wash the feet of the students and to wipe them off with the cloth in which He was girt. 6 Then He comes to Simon Petros, who says to Him 'Prince, will You wash my feet?' 7 Yahshua replied and said to him: 'That which I do you do not know right now, but you should understand after these things.' 8 Petros says to Him: 'You may not wash my feet forever!' Yahshua replied to him: 'If I do not wash you, you do not have a part with Me!' 9 Simon Petros says to Him 'Prince, do not wash my feet only, but also the hands and the head!' 10 Yahshua says to him: 'He who is bathed does not have need except to wash the feet, but is entirely clean. And you are clean, but not all!' 11 For He knew the man betraying Him. For this reason He said that 'You are not all clean'. 12 Therefore when He washed their feet and took His garments and reclined again, He said to them: 'Do you know what I have done to you? 13 You call Me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Prince’, and you speak well, for I am. 14 Therefore if I, the Prince and the Teacher, have washed your feet, you are also obliged to wash the feet of one another. 15 For I have given to you an example in order that just as I have done for you, you also should do. 16 Truly, truly I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master nor an ambassador greater than he who sent him. 17 If you know these things, you are blessed if you would do them.'

28 “For you are those who have remained with Me in My trials.

The Codex Bezae (D) has this verse to read: “For you have grown in My service as he serving those who have remained with Me in My trials.” Among all of the ancient codices now known to us, the Codex Bezae is the only one which was available to the men who translated the King James Version of the Bible. Strangely, there are those who advocate the exclusive use of the King James translation who are also staunch defenders of the Codex Bezae for that reason. However, and quite hypocritically, those same men are silent concerning all of the many places where the Codex Bezae does not at all agree with the Majority Text upon which the King James version is based.

29 And I delegate to you just as My Father has delegated to Me a Kingdom, 30 that you may eat and you may drink at My table in My Kingdom, and you shall sit upon thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

The Codex Alexandrinus (A) adds the word “covenant” after the pronoun translated as you in verse 29, where the verse may be read: “And I delegate to you a covenant just as My Father has delegated to Me a Kingdom”. In verse 30, the Codex Bezae (D) has “twelve thrones”. Whether it be twelve thrones or not, the number of thrones for the judges of a restored Israel are not limited to twelve, or even to twenty-four, a number which we see in the Revelation.

From Matthew chapter 19: “27 Then responding Petros said to Him: 'Look, we have left everything and have followed You! What then is there for us?' 28 And Yahshua said to them: 'Truly I say to you that you are those who shall be following Me in the regeneration, when the Son of Man shall sit upon the throne of His honor, and you also shall sit upon twelve thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel! '”

From Revelation chapter 4:1 After these things I looked, and behold! A door being opened in heaven, and the first voice which I had heard as a trumpet speaking with me saying “Come up here, and I shall show to you the things which are necessary to happen.” After these things 2 immediately I was in the Spirit, and behold! A throne fixed in heaven, and He sitting upon the throne. 3 And He sitting alike in appearance to a jasper stone, and a sardius, and a rainbow around the throne alike in appearance to emerald, 4 and around the throne twenty-four thrones, and upon the thrones twenty-four elders sitting, cloaked in white garments and upon their heads gold crowns

31 “Simon, Simon, behold! The Adversary demanded you, for which to winnow you as grain! 32 But I made supplication concerning you, that your faith would not fail. And when you have turned about, you must strengthen your brethren.”

The precedent Scripture with which to understand just what Peter was prevented from is found in the story of Job in the Old Testament.

Job 1: “6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them. 7 And the LORD said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it. 8 And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?9 Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought? 10 Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land. 11 But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face. 12 And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD.”

33 Then he said to Him “Prince, I am ready to go with You even into prison and to death!” 34 But He said: “I say to you, Petros, today a cock shall not crow until you have three times denied knowing Me!”

A minor detail which may be mentioned, the following discourse was said by both Matthew and Mark to have taken place while Christ and the apostles were on their way to the Mount of Olives. Luke does not relate that they actually leave for the Mount of Olives until he records what follows.

On at least one occasion, Christ indicated to Peter what was the will of God, and in turn Peter argued with Christ in the road, thereby being called a satan by Christ as attested to at Matthew 4:10 . Arguing against the will of God, one becomes an adversary to God. Of course the perpetual adversaries of God, those Satans with a capital 'S', are another matter entirely.

Christ called Simon the son of Jonah petros, or stone, right from the beginning, as is attested at John 1:42. This may well have been because Peter, as he has come to be known, was the most stubborn of the apostles. Peter needed to suffer many things three times before he understood them. This is evident here, where he will be told below that he was to deny Yahshua three times, and in the last chapter of John where Christ admonishes him to feed His sheep three times, and again in Acts chapter 10 where Peter had to see the vision of the sheet three times.

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