Pastor Kurt was back to preaching on The Gospel of Mark this morning!
14:32-42 32 They went to a place called Gethsemane, and Jesus said to his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” 33 He
took Peter, James and John along with him, and he began to be deeply distressed
and troubled. 34 “My soul is overwhelmed with
sorrow to the point of death,” he said to
them. “Stay here and keep watch.”
a little farther, he fell to the ground and prayed that if possible the hour
might pass from him. 36 “Abba,
Father,” he said, “everything
is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you
he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. “Simon,” he said to Peter, “are you asleep? Couldn’t you
keep watch for one hour? 38 Watch and pray so that you will not fall into
temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
more he went away and prayed the same thing. 40 When he came back, he again
found them sleeping, because their eyes were heavy. They did not know what to
say to him.
the third time, he said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting? Enough!
The hour has come. Look, the Son of Man is delivered into the hands of sinners. 42 Rise! Let us
go! Here comes my betrayer!”
The upper room was in the western part of Jerusalem
. The disciples had been enjoying a
holiday dinner with Jesus; a time of great fellowship. But they were also
confused and concerned. Jesus had told them He was the sacrificial lamb and He
was leaving them.
Passover always takes place during a full moon, so they would have been able
to see pretty well. But it was late and they were cold and tired. They probably
assumed they were headed back to Bethany
south of the city where they were staying. As they were walking east across
Jerusalem Jesus stopped at one point and prayed. That prayer is in John 17. It’s
a prayer for His glorification, for His disciples and for all believers. After
that they passed the Temple
and went into the Kidron Valley
but instead of going south to Bethany Jesus turned north to the Garden of Gethsemane
. Jesus had prayed here many
times before, but he usually went alone.
This wasn’t a landscaped pretty garden. It was really a walled off olive
grove, maybe a few acres in size. Jesus left eight of the disciples at the wall
and took Peter, James and John with Him farther in. He told the three to stay
and keep watch.
Jesus was going to pray to His Father. Really He was going to wrestle with
Him and then yield His life to save us. This passage gives us three things to
think about: the greatness of Christ, the glory of submission and the failure
Jesus told them His soul was very sorrowful, even to death. He had prepared
from before the beginning of the world for this moment, but here He was and he
was overwhelmed at the pain He was feeling. Not just what He would be
physically going through the next day, He knew all of that, but that He would
have to take on all of our sins and feel the complete wrath of God. And for
awhile He would be separate for the first time from His Father. I heard a
minister say that it wasn’t the nails or the flogging or the spear that killed
Jesus; it was a broken heart after God turned away from Him.
Jesus knows everything we suffer through. He knows every worry in our head.
There is not a hurt or sorrow He doesn’t understand.
Hebrews 2: 17-18 17 For this
reason he had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that he
might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he
might make atonement for the sins of the people. 18 Because he himself suffered
when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.
And Hebrews 2:16 16 For surely it is not angels he helps, but
He gives help! He knows what we are
going through and He is willing and able to help us. But we have to trust in
Him and lean on Him. Rely on His way of helping! It might be in a different way
then we would expect.
When you are sorrowful and filled
with dread; crying out to God, remember the Garden of Gethsemane.
He gets it! Even though He prayed asking if it could be taken away He said, “but
not my will but Thine.” He said yes because He knew it would save people and it
would glorify His Father. This is the glory of His submission.
Our sin is an eternal offense
toward God. A death payment must be made to atone for this. God is willing to
forgive us if we put our trust in Christ’s work. Here’s a warning:
you don’t trust in Christ’s payment you will pay it yourself forever!
Jesus showed us how to submit and
we need to follow His example.
John 5:30 By myself I can do nothing; I judge only as I hear, and my judgment is
just, for I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.
6:38 For I have come down from heaven
not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me.
8:29 The one who sent me is with me;
he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him.
The first way we glorify God is by trusting
Him! Anything we do we should ask ourselves, “Is this God’s will?” If it is we
are called to submit. And then enjoy the ride!
The disciples were told to stay awake and
pray, but they couldn’t. The Gospel of Luke says they fell asleep because they
were very sorrowful. They kind of gave up instead of turning to God. Jesus had
told them to pray, not so much for Him, but for themselves – He knew it would
focus them on what would get them through the experience. We try by ourselves,
but we need God!
Another thing we should remember about this
story. God’s answer to Jesus was “no.”
God the Father said no to His precious, perfect Son so He could say yes to us!
Our response should be thanksgiving and praise!
Labels: Garden of Gethsemane, Gospel of Mark, Jesus