by Ivor Powell

Christ...and His Triumph in the Garden
Ivor Powell
Luke 22:41-44; Hebrews 5:7

When the Savior knelt to pray in the Garden of Gethsemane, time stood still. Perhaps even angels were astonished when they saw blood upon the face of the King of Kings. It was difficult to comprehend something that defied understanding. The disciples, weary and despondent, had followed Jesus into the night and had recognized His desire to pray. Then they fell asleep. The night was extremely still; there were no sounds except for the desperate cries of the Lord. Christ writhed in pain, and suddenly an angel appeared to strengthen the Master. It was never revealed whether that miracle was performed by word or touch, or how new energy entered the Savior's body. His task completed, the angelic messenger returned to heaven, and the Lord continued His prayer.

"Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me, nevertheless, not my will, but thine be done." Even now, it almost seems sacrilege to tread upon that hallowed ground. Yet the fact that God permitted men to describe the scene might be an invitation to examine its details.

Proposition One . . . This was not an ordinary prayer.

Jesus was a man of prayer. Often He arose before dawn to climb a mountain to commune with His Father. Prior to each major decision made, He spoke with God to make sure everything being done was in accordance with the divine will. He instructed His disciples in the art of intercession and emphasized that certain problems were only solved by prayer and fasting. Nevertheless, the ordeal in the Garden of Gethsemane was different from any other experience endured. Luke wrote, "And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground." Another author wrote, "When he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears." Luke used the word agonia from which is derived the English word agony. Dr. Thayer says it means "sever ...

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