This week, a very simple Sunday reflection on the Gospel of Mark.
Within the Gethsemane narrative in chapter 14 are these 2 verses
50Then everyone deserted him and fled. 51 A young man, wearing nothing but a linen garment, was following Jesus. When they seized him, 52 he fled naked, leaving his garment behind.
Despite their recent sincere and passionate protestations of utter loyalty, when suddenly confronted with the ugly reality of armed guards in the middle of the night and all that they symbolised, to a man, the disciples flee. (And whether the naked young man is Mark himself is not that important, the point is he deserts Jesus in shame along with all the others).
I think sometimes what we really believe is revealed most profoundly, not in conversations, or in statements of faith and certainly not in blog posts (!) – but in sudden unexpected ‘moments of truth’. Where you have no time to plan or theorise, but are faced with an instantaneous choice: to act with courage and/or say something true, or to act with cowardice and not act, say nothing or perhaps even ‘run away’ from the situation.
And for many Christians around the world such moments of truth do involve life and death decisions.
Such moments expose faith and character. And this moment in the garden exposes the disciples’ promises as empty words. To be blunt, deep down, when tested, they simply didn’t believe or trust Jesus. Arrest, torture and death did not form part of their expectations of following this Galilean Messiah.
The question this text asks me and you is, deep down, when confronted with a ‘moment of truth’ that may test your faith to the limit, will you keep trusting and believing in Jesus?