GOSPEL MEDITATION # 230
Jesus Prays in Gethsemane
- Find a quiet place without distractions.
- Be comfortably alert, still, and at peace.
- Say the Lord’s Prayer. Sing or cant the Jesus Prayer.
- Pray for family, friends, neighbors, and yourself.
- Slowly and carefully read the passage of Scripture.
- From memory, determine the central points.
- Late Thursday evening, following the Passover meal, Jesus crosses the Kidron Valley and winds His way up the slopes of The Mount of Olives to the Garden of Gethsemane, or the Garden of the olive press.
- Leaving 8 of the disciples, Jesus brings Peter, James, and John a little further on and asks that they wait while He prays. And Jesus does not hide the fact that He is very disturbed.
- Perhaps due to too much of the dinner in them and the lateness of the hour, the 3 cannot stay awake.
- The disciples had likely never seen their Master so troubled and may not have known how to comfort Him.
- Jesus’ prayer is not like anything He had ever prayed before. How the 3 knew what He was praying is a mystery. Some say one of them, maybe John, overheard. But however it was, we can only guess.
- Jesus is truly grieved, which the language in all the Gospels makes abundantly clear. Here is a man in pain.
- Perhaps never before have we seen a reminder of the compete humanness of Jesus, the Word become flesh.
- His prayer begins with, “Abba, Father.” “Abba” from the Aramaic and means something close to “Daddy.” “Father,” and is pater in the Greek. (Some commentators suggest pater is added for Mark’s Greek reader. Neither Matthew nor Luke have Abba.)
- Jesus prays the same prayer each time, essentially that if it be possible may the hour pass and the cup removed from Him.
- The “if” as to the hour passing is a first class condition meaning that Jesus knew the Father could do that—let it pass. But He knew that was not the Father’s will as the whole of salvation would collapse.
- Taking our sin upon Himself, that separation from the Father, was the crux of the agony in the garden. This is very far beyond our comprehension. We can only read of it and catch a glimpse only of what full fellowship with the Triune God will be like.