The Urantia Book
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A Synopsis of Paper 177: Wednesday, the Rest Day

On Wednesday Jesus suggested that the apostles take some free time, asking only that they not go into Jerusalem. Jesus prepared to go into the hills alone to commune with his Father. David Zebedee proposed to send three men along for protection but Jesus declined the company.

Just before Jesus set out, John Mark brought him a basket of food and water. As Jesus reached for the basket the boy begged to come along. Holding fast to the lunch, John Mark promised that he would not disturb the Master and that he could watch the basket while Jesus prayed. Jesus relented, "Since with all your heart you crave to go with me, it shall not be denied you. We will go by ourselves and have a good visit."

The apostles spent most of the day visiting with disciples. As the day passed, they grew increasingly anxious about Jesus' safety. They were lonely for him. Nathaniel voiced the opinion ".that what is wrong with most of us is that we are only half-hearted. We fail to love the Master as he loves us. If we had all wanted to go with him as much as John Mark did, he would surely have taken us all."

That afternoon, David Zebedee received word that his mother was on her way to Jerusalem accompanied by Jesus' mother and family. David kept the news of their pending arrival to himself.

Soon after Jesus left camp, Judas slipped away to meet with Jesus' enemies at the home of the high priest Caiaphas. His Sadducean friends told Judas that his reversal of opinion on Jesus would be hailed as a great event and that he would receive high honors from the Sanhedrin.

Judas was convinced that Jesus was going to allow himself to be defeated by the Jewish rulers, and Judas could not endure that humiliation. He entertained the idea that Jesus was probably not sound of mind. Judas resented Jesus for not assigning him greater honor, and was indignant to think that James, Peter, and John had been closer to the Master. This meeting with the Sanhedrin gave Judas an opportunity to secure glory for himself while taking revenge on those whom he now so bitterly resented.

Judas presented his case to Caiaphas and the other Jewish leaders, offering to help them arrest Jesus in a private place. An agreement was made that Judas would deliver Jesus to the temple guards late Thursday evening. Judas was pleased that he had found a way to salvage the lost glory he had dreamed of in the new kingdom for immediate honor in the old. The other apostles also craved honor, but their love for Jesus was a more powerful influence on them than their desire for personal glory.

Evening came. Jesus returned to camp and tried to cheer his followers, but they were so downhearted by their sense of impending disaster that it was nearly an impossible task. The apostles had begun to realize the terrible isolation that was about to visit them, and none of them felt prepared.

During his evening talk Jesus warned his disciples to beware the support of the multitudes who believe the truth superficially but do not allow it to grow roots in their hearts. "Those who know the gospel only in the mind, and who have not experienced it in the heart, cannot be depended upon for support when real trouble comes." Knowing that this was their last evening together Jesus sent them to sleep, saying, "Go to your sleep, my brethren, and peace be upon you till we rise on the morrow, one more day to do the Father's will and experience the joy of knowing that we are his sons."

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