No event in the life of Jesus more powerfully demonstrates the nature of His dependence on God and His obedience to God’s will than the prayer He offered up in the Garden of Gethsemane on the night before His crucifixion.
Jesus knew the brutality execution by crucifixion was. The drawn-out process was humiliating and excruciating. Jesus knew He would feel the full force of degradation and pain, trauma, betrayal, injustice, and hopelessness. As a human, He was anxious. He told His disciples before He entered the garden,
My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. — Matthew 26:38
Once Jesus was by Himself, He fell face to the ground and prayed:
My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from Me. Yet I want Your will to be done, not Mine. — Matthew 26:39 NLT
He prayed this prayer not just once, but three times. Jesus pleaded for a stay of execution. Could any of us blame Him? He knew there was no other way for salvation to be made available to the entire human race. He was the spotless lamb, the Messiah about whom the Old Testament prophets wrote. He was the sinless Son of God. He had not allowed any temptation to blemish His life. This was the only possible solution. If not Jesus, then who? If not Jesus, then humanity would be without hope. Yet Jesus petitioned the Father to see if there might be another way.
Jesus finished all three prayers with a declaration that had been true throughout His entire thirty-three years walking this earth. He surrendered himself to his Father:
Yet not as I will, but as You will.
This is the purpose of Jesus’s life. The gospel does not record the Father’s answer, however, Jesus’s actions make it abundantly clear that He understood the Father’s will.
He then returned to the disciples and said:
Are you still sleeping and resting? Look, the hour has come, and the Son of Man is delivered into the hands of sinners. Rise! Let us go! Here comes My betrayer! — Matthew 26:45–46
He had received a clear answer. It was the Father’s will for Jesus to face the cross for the love of humankind. When He said. “Rise, Let us go!” Jesus was saying, “I know without a doubt what I am to do. There is no turning back. Let’s get this done!” — That is a picture of total surrender to the will of the Father. Ohhhhhh, that each of us would be able to surrender to Our Heavenly Father’s Will and Plan for us. Three days later, Jesus was alive again and the path was laid for all people to come into a relationship with Our Heavenly Father for eternity.
Jesus showed His complete dependence upon God the Father. That is the dependence that we need to walk in with Our Heavenly Father. We are desperate for His will in our lives! How better to honor the sacrifice of the Savior than to walk with Him?
When we embrace God’s offering, our lives will never be the same. Please pray for all God’s Children as I am praying for each of you!