4 Then Jesus, knowing all things that were to happen to Him, went out and said to them: “Who are you looking for?”
5 They replied to Him: “Jesus of Nazareth”. Jesus said (says): “I Am”. Judas, the one betraying Him, was also standing with them.
6 Then when He said: “I am”, they drew back and fell on the ground.
We sometimes say that we know which way the wind is blowing, meaning that we are fully aware of what is happening or about to happen. When I worked as a porter signalman on the railway, there was an occasion when a guard shunted three loaded iron ore wagons down a siding, without putting any breaks on. I watched this happen, but I was unable to do anything about it since I was in my signalbox. I knew what the outcome was going to be: the wagons were going to hit the buffer stops. I knew which way the wind was blowing. The wagons certainly hit the buffer stops, causing considerable damage.
Jesus knew which way the wind was blowing. He had determinedly set out on the course that lay before Him. He knew the suffering and the humiliation that He was about to suffer. He knew that He was soon to be separated from His Father for the first and only time.
He was not ignorant of what the band of men were intent on doing. Jesus was fully aware of everything that was going to happen to Him within the next twenty-four hours.
Yet He went out to meet them. He did not hide; He did not seek to run away. Instead He went towards them and said: “Who are your looking for?”
The writer to the Hebrews, recalling this event wrote:
He was willing to die a shameful death on the cross because of the joy He knew would be His afterward – Hebrews 12.2 (NLT).
This was the bravest act; it was a courageous act; and He did it for you and me. He did it to rescue us from the depths of our sin and bring to us eternal life.
There will be times when we also will know which way the wind is blowing as we live our life for Jesus. For some they will know that they will lose their family, their homes, their jobs, their friends. Some will know that they will lose their life.
In those times when we know that we are called to take up our cross and follow Jesus we also know that He will be with us by the Holy Spirit, so that we can go out and meet whatever circumstances we are called upon to endure.