by Nelson Price

Gethsemane: Battleground of Flesh and Blood
Nelson Price
Mark 14:32-42; Matthew 26:36-46

JESUS CHRIST on the eve of His crucifixion, sought to console His followers. As they walked from Jerusalem late at night to cross the Kidron Valley and enter the Garden of Gethsemane, He urged them, ''Let not your hearts be troubled...''

Gethsemane means oil or olive press. It was located at the base of the Mount of Olives and served as an olive processing point. Today there are 8 old olive trees on the sight that date back to the time of Christ.

This tranquil garden was evidently owned by a friend of Jesus who let Him use it at various times. In the last days of Christ's life there were several friends who came to His aid. In a desert of hatred, Jesus found an oasis of love. One person let Him use his donkey, another let Him borrow the Upper Room, and now a friend allows the use of his garden.

Upon entering the garden to pray Christ experienced an emotional trauma unknown among humankind. Knowing His ''hour had come'' he staggered before what was involved. Every temptation that had come to Him had come from without. In this critical moment this one comes from within. Note: Vs. 33 - ''SORE (GREATLY) AMAZED'' = stunned with astonishment, this expressed pain of great shock. This speaks of terrified surprise. Its terror exceeded His anticipation. His last great lesson of obedience began with a sensation of inconceivable awe. Vs. 33 - ''VERY HEAVY'' = restless, half-distracted. Not at home with what was happening. Some of usget so accustomed to sin that we get to feeling right at home with it. This expression refers to an unfamiliar experience. He was troubled and distressed. Vs. 34 - ''EXCEEDINGLY SORROWFUL'' = surrounded by sorrow. ''UNTO DEATH'' = He became deathly sick.

W - H - Y ?

It was not because of cowering before physical pain as it approached. Others had died for their faith before without withdrawing. Others would follow and face death without reluct ...

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