And in the day-time he was teaching in the temple; and at night he went out, and abode in the mount that is called the mount of Olives. Luke 21:37 KJV

Now during the day He was teaching in the temple, but at evening He would go out and spend the night on the mount that is called Olivet. Luke 21:37 NASB

The title of this meditation is somewhat misleading considering the verse cited. In point of truth, you can survey the life of the Lord Jesus prior to the cross and search in vain for an evening where there is any hint that a night was spent within the walls of Jerusalem. No door was opened for Him; no home spread a welcome mat inviting Him to enter. He came unto His own things – the nation, the people, the throne, and the city – and He was not received.

There was a home at Nazareth as a boy, a home in Capernaum later in His life. Then there was the warm and inviting home at Bethany where He may well have spent evenings. Luke tells us that there were nights spent on the Mount of Olives, His head wet with the dew from heaven, and His body supine upon the earth His hands had fashioned. Jerusalem failed to show hospitality; He was a stranger in the City of the Great King.

But He did spend one night in Jerusalem. There was, however, no comfortable bed, no warm welcome. He was not surrounded by caring, loving friends. There was no concern for His well-being or rest. That night spent in Jerusalem, the only such night, was spent in the court of the High Priest and amidst the temple guard and rabble. It was His last night prior to the cross!

We are told in John 13 that when Judas went out, it was night. While John may have inserted this time marker as an indicator of the moral condition of Judas, it is also a reminder that it was night-time. All the events which followed between the upper room and the morning the Lord stood before Pilate transpired through the night hours.

He was interrogated, mocked, spit upon, beaten, and condemned by the Jewish court (Matt 26:57-67). It was a night of untold grief to His heart. The nation He loved was ratifying their own condemnation by their rejection of Him. He felt for their coming suffering (Luke 23:27-31) more than for the suffering He was enduring. It was a night of “reproach, shame, and sorrow” when all His “adversaries” were arrayed in their arrogance and pride against Him. He grieved over the falsehood of the suborned witnesses. The God Who hates “false balances” (Prov 11:1) must have suffered emotionally from the unjust verdict of His guilt.

He only spent one night during his life in Jerusalem. But it was a memorable night so different from every other night He had known.


There is actually only one occasion when we read of the Lord sleeping. Can you find it and note what occurred that one time that He was recorded sleeping?

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