Yesterday i wrote a post about what happened to Jesus in the garden of gethsemane just before he was betrayed by Judas Iscariot. You know, sometimes we overfamiliarise ourselves with things in the Bible we don’t recognise the full depth of the stories, or what is being said. This has happened to me many times, and everytime i apologise to God for not recognising the full significance of what happened when he was crucified and taking it for granted.
I’ll go straight to the point and say what we can learn from what happened to Jesus at the garden of gethsemane.
Jesus was full of grief, he was so depressed and his soul was overwhelmed with sadness. It wasn’t easy at all. Everyone is used to the statement that Jesus shed his blood on the cross of calvary.This is true but, Jesus did not just only shed his blood on the cross, but starting sheding his blood right from the garden of gethsemane for us. The Bible says, Jesus’s sweat became like great clots of blood dropping down upon the ground. He knew all that was going to happen to Him, and from the thought of it, he was so sad and full of agony. Actually, medical doctors confirm that at times of intense agony or grief a person’s blood vessels can break under the skin, with blood coming out of their skin pores like sweat.
Jesus had to submit his will to the will of the Father in gethsemane. Do you think if Jesus didn’t want to, he couldn’t have ordered for legions of angels to be sent down to rescue Him from all the torture? If he chose not to do what he felt like doing at that point he would never have gone to the cross. But He thought about the joy that was set before Him if he died, and he let the will of His Father be done. That joy was you and me. He thought about the joy of having a relationship with his children. He thought about that, and said ‘Not my will, but Your will be done’. For this very reason, as christians we don’t always have to do what we feel like doing. This is a major teaching i learnt from Joyce Meyer as she teaches about living beyond your feelings. Jesus had an angel from heaven strengthening him in spirit for what he was about to face.
I have found out that the same thing happens to us when we become christians. God gives us his grace and his mercy, and he gives us the power of the Holy Spirit to do his will and strengthen our spirits. The more we live by the spirit of God, the more we kill the flesh. Submission to the spirit of God is the key to living beyond our feelings and doing the will of God not ours. For indeed, the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. I believe the story of Christ in gethsemane emphasises the fact that we have to learn to ask for the grace of God to do the will of the father. It always pays off in the end. It paid off for Christ! Jesus has the joy that was set before Him 2000 years ago now. He is highly exalted above all things, and sitted at the right hand of the throne of God now. So even though you may have the worst problem or disaster in your life if you don’t do what you feel like doing, choose to do the will of God, and you’ll find out it pays off in the end.
Finally, if you compare the garden of gethsemane to the garden of Eden you might notice some striking similarities. God was in both gardens. Man was in both gardens(Adam&Eve in Eden, and Peter, James and John in Gethsemane). Adam and Eve in Eden knew no sin till the fall of man. Peter, James and John show the weakness in man as they slept and could not pray. There was the enemy lurking somewhere in the corner(the serpent in Eden, and Satan-who had entered Judas Iscariot). I don’t think Satan wanted Jesus to be crucified because he knew what that meant. He had caused Peter to try and prevent Jesus from going to the cross before(Jesus said to Peter, ‘Devil get thee behind me’). But i find it quite mysterious how in the end, Satan (through Judas), for the scriptures to be fulfilled, had to give in to the plan somehow so that Jesus might be betrayed and crucified. Blood was shed in both gardens. In Eden, after Adam and Eve sinned and they realised they were naked, God had to kill an animal, to take its skin and clothe Adam and Eve. And Jesus sweat became like great clots of Blood in Gethsemane.
Jesus praying in gethsemane also reminds christians of the importance of prayer. Many people pray that God remove adversity or problems but maybe we’ll find it easier if we pray that God’s power helps us go through it, just like Jesus did. Like i said earlier, it is always worth it in the end, and i know this not just by knowledge but by experience.
I believe that what happened at the garden of gethsemane is beyond just one of those biblical stories, but is a mystery in itself.