“Cannot (I) now pray to the Father and He shall presently give Me more than twelve legions of angels?” Matthew 26:21-54 KJV

“Do you think that I cannot appeal to My Father, and He will at once put at My disposal more than twelve legions of angels? ” Matthew 26:51-51 NASB

Twelve disciples against a mob of soldiers and others who had come to apprehend the Lord of glory. He did not need them; and they would have been defenseless against the mob. Peter’s sword flashes and severs an ear. But what is that in light of the weapons and numbers?

On heaven’s portal, legions of angels stand ready to do the Father’s bidding. Yet the throne is silent. Angels must have watched in amazement as mere men bound the Son of God and led Him away.

No request from earth broke the silence. No order from heaven was issued to intervene. Even Lot in sinful Sodom would be rescued by angels; Daniel knew their deliverance in the den of lions. Hezekiah would know deliverance from the Assyrians through the work of one angel. But angels stood motionless and possibly breathless as the scene unfolded.

Questions to Consider

  1. It does not say that the Lord Jesus could call for twelve legions of angels. It says He could request them of the Father. What does the distinction suggest?
  2. Twelve disciples and twelve legions of angels: do you think there is a link and that the Lord Jesus Christ was impressing the disciples in the contrast?
  3. Gethsemane means “olive press.” The Olive tree was a symbol of Israel spiritually bearing testimony by the Spirit of God for God. Think of ways in which the Lord Jesus bore testimony to the character of God in these events in the Garden? What kind of God do you have?