Matthew 20:17-19 (NLT)
17 As Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, he took the twelve disciples aside privately and told them what was going to happen to him. 18 �Listen,� he said, �we�re going up to Jerusalem, where the Son of Man will be betrayed to the leading priests and the teachers of religious law. They will sentence him to die. 19 Then they will hand him over to the Romans to be mocked, flogged with a whip, and crucified. But on the third day he will be raised from the dead.�

A prediction of Christ's approaching sufferings. He took the twelve disciples apart in the way. This was one of those things which were told to them in darkness, but which they were afterward to speak in the light, ch. 10:27. His secret was with them, as his friends, and this particularly. It was a hard saying, and, if any could bear it, they could. They would be more immediately exposed to peril with him, and therefore it was requisite that they should know of it, that, being fore-warned, they might be fore-armed. It was not fit to be spoken publicly as yet. This is the third time that Christ gave his disciples notice of his approaching sufferings; he was not going up to Jerusalem to celebrate the passover, and to offer up himself the great Passover; both must be done at Jerusalem: there the passover must be kept (Deu. 12:5), and there a prophet must perish, because there the great Sanhedrim sat, who were judges in that case, Lu. 13:33. [quotations from Matthew Henry�s Commentary]



There are times when things should be said in private and this was one of those times. Jesus did not want others to know of him impending death. His disciples, however, deserved to hear the truth.

These verses give us the basis for a gospel presentation. Jesus who was innocent was to be betrayed and taken by the religions leadership. Jesus was then turned over to the Romans by this same religious leadership where he was flogged, tortured and crucified until death. Jesus also told them that on the third day he would be raised from the dead. Christ defeats sin and He defeats death so that we can have an eternal life with Him in heaven through faith in Christ, knowing we are sinners and are in need of His redemption.

Jesus Christ gave us the ultimate model of masculine love. Jesus sacrificed himself for others. It doesn't take any special ability to live a self-centered life; but it takes character to sacrifice.