Why was Yeshua keeping watch in the Garden of Gethsemane? I think He was keeping Torah! Here’s why…
A friend was here for a couple days last week and we were discussing Pesach observance. He explained that for the last 15 years he and his family have kept an all night vigil. My curiosity piqued, I asked, “Why? How did you arrive at that practice?”
“Exodus 12:42!,” he exclaimed. And, I reached for my Bible.
42 It is a night [a]to be observed for the Lord for having brought them out from the land of Egypt; this night is for the Lord, [b]to be observed [c]by all the sons of Israel throughout their generations.
Interestingly, the word ‘shimmur,’ here twice translated as ‘observed,’ is never used anywhere else in the Tanak. It means ‘vigil.’ The night was to be observed as a vigil, keeping watch! The Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew Lexicon says, “1) night watch, watching, vigil.”
Yeshua, in the Garden of Gethsemane says, “…remain here and keep watch with Me,” and later asks, “You could not keep watch with Me even one hour?”
He was keeping watch! The question is, ‘why?’
While certainly He knew the significance of that night and was in final preparation for the violence about to come upon Him, was He ‘watching,’ and encouraging the disciples to ‘keep vigil’ because of the expectation in Exodus 12:42?
I’m not sure we can nail this down with full assurance, but we’d be on pretty solid footing understanding that He was ‘keeping vigil,’ exactly as we are commanded in Exodus!
What are your thought?