Jesus is the Author and Finisher of our faith, and He is the example that we, as His disciples, must follow…

Jesus Prays in Gethsemane (Luke 22:39-44)…

In Luke 22:37, Jesus quoted Isaiah 53:12 to help His disciples realize that others would regard Him as a criminal.

Therefore it would be very difficult for His disciples.

They would face intense opposition, as Peter experienced in the high priest’s courtyard.

Jesus did not want them to underestimate the strength of the opposition they would face, so that they would depend on God alone, and not on themselves, to help them remain faithful.

“At this point Christ emphatically applies to Himself a portion of Isa. 53.

Therefore, to deny that the fifty-third chapter of Isaiah predicts Christ’s passion is to contradict the Savior’s own interpretation of the prophecy.”

It was the false charges that Jesus had claimed Himself to be a king in opposition to Caesar that identified Him as a criminal.

Jesus faced Calvary from Gethsemane, submitting to the Father’s will but still having to warn the disciples to pray in the midst of temptation.

Prayer was a way of life for Jesus. He had a special place in the Mount of Olives where he habitually went for prayer.

The disciples followed, an ironic statement in light of Christ’s original call to “follow me” (5:8-11,27-28; 9:23,59,61; 18:22,28).

Now they followed, but only to fall asleep in Jesus’ greatest moment of need and in the face of Satan’s renewed attack on them.

They followed, but not in the way a person takes up a cross and follows.

22:40. Jesus gave them a prayer assignment. It centered on their chief need.

The renewed activities of Satan called them to pray to escape temptation as Jesus had escaped Satan’s temptation.

Judas and Peter were not the only ones Satan wanted.

He wanted all of Christ’s disciples and would tempt each of them.

Only prayer and Scripture can successfully fight such evil power and overcome temptation.

Very soon, the disciples would be sleeping in Gethsemane when they should have been praying (vv. 40, 46).

Similarly, we often fail to ask God to help us, and instead rely on our own resources.


This section in Luke’s Gospel consists of two incidents:

Jesus’ preparation for His arrest and crucifixion, and the arrest itself.

The subject of the whole section is proper preparation for persecution.

Jesus’ preparation in Gethsemane 22:39-46 (cf. Matt. 26:30, 36-46; Mark 14:26, 32-42; John 18:1) Luke organized his narrative so Jesus’ praying in the garden follows immediately His instructions to the disciples about their preparation for the crisis to come.

The present situation shows Jesus’ proper approach to it, and the disciples’ improper approach.

The next pericope reveals the consequences of their actions.

22:39-40 Luke earlier revealed that during this week, Jesus had been spending His nights on the “Mount of Olives” (21:37).

It was apparently to this “custom” that the writer referred to here.

Judas would have expected Jesus to go there, and Jesus did not try to elude Judas.

Jesus’ control over His own destiny is again evident in His leading the disciples out of the city to the mount.

Luke did not identify “the place” where Jesus prayed as “Gethsemane” (Matt. 26:36; Mark 14:32), perhaps because he did not want to detract from the action in the pericope.

Jesus focused the disciples’ attention on their need for God’s protection from “temptation” (Gr. peirasmon), and instructed them to “pray” for it (cf. 11:4).

Only Luke wrote that He told them to pray specifically for this, and only Luke mentioned that Jesus gave this command to all the “disciples.”

The effect is that the reader sees all the disciples as needing to pray because of the danger of failing.

22:41-42 Luke presented Jesus praying as any disciple could pray (cf. Rom. 11:4; 14:11; Eph. 3:14; Phil. 2:10).

His posture reflects His submissive attitude: “He knelt down.”

Luke did not record that Jesus lay prostrate during part of His prayer vigil (cf. Matt. 26:39; Mark 14:35).

The prayer itself reveals complete dependence on the Father’s will.

Jesus asked for removal of the “cup,” the symbol of His sufferings consequent to God’s judgment on sin (cf. Ps. 11:6; 75:8; Isa. 51:17; Jer. 25:15-17; 2 Cor. 5:21; 1 Pet. 2:24).

He requested it only if it was possible, i.e., if the Father was “willing” (Gr. ei boulei).

In any case, He submitted to His Father’s will above all.

Throughout his Gospel, Luke made frequent references to Jesus’ conscious fulfillment of God’s purposes.

The submissiveness of Jesus’ prayer is a model for all disciples.

When we do not know God’s will specifically, we can voice our request, but we should always submit our preferences to God’s will.

Luke pictured Jesus as a real man, not a demigod.

“The effect of the saying is that Jesus, facing the temptation to avoid the path of suffering appointed by God, nevertheless accepts the will of God despite His own desire that it might be otherwise.

He does not seek to disobey the will of God, but longs that God’s will might be different. But even this is to be regarded as temptation, and it is overcome by Jesus.”

One very important lesson that we can learn from the Bible is that in spite of how bad things may look, in the end God is ALWAYS in control and He always has the last word!

From Max Lucado:

Christ Through the Bible
Jesus: Master of God’s Domain

God hasn’t kept the ending a secret. He wants us to see the big picture.

He wants us to know that He wins. And He also wants us to know that the evil we witness on the stage of life is not as mighty as we might think.

Many passages teach these truths, but my favorite is a couple of verses recorded by Luke.

Jesus speaks the words on the night before His death. He is in the upper room with His followers.

They are shocked to hear His prophecy that one of them will betray the Master.

Their defensiveness leads to an argument, and the argument leads Jesus to exhort them to servanthood.

Then in an abrupt shift, Jesus turns to Simon Peter and makes this intriguing statement:

“Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren” (Luke 22:31, 32).

This passage gives us a glimpse into an unseen world. It raises many questions, but it also affords many assurances, the chief of which is the chain of command.

God is clearly in control, and the devil is on a short leash.

Did you notice the verb that followed Satan’s name? Ask.

“Satan has asked. . . .”

The devil didn’t demand, resolve, or decide. He asked.

Just as he requested permission to tempt Job, he requested permission to tempt Simon Peter.

Sort of recasts our image of the old snake, doesn’t it?

Instead of the mighty Darth Vader of Gloom, a better caricature is a skinny, back-alley punk who acts tough, but ducks fast when God flexes.

“Uh, uh . . . I’d . . . uh . . . like to do a number on Peter—that is, if you don’t mind.”

The chain of command is clear. Satan does nothing outside of God’s domain, and God uses Satan to advance the cause of His kingdom.

(From When Christ Comes by Max Lucado)

SELAH (let us pause and calmly think about these things)

Sunday, April 2
The Winning Walk


“And He came out and proceeded as was His custom to the Mount of Olives; and the disciples also followed Him. When He arrived at the place, He said to them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.” And He withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and He knelt down and began to pray, saying, “Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done.” Now an angel from heaven appeared to Him, strengthening Him. And being in agony He was praying very fervently; and His sweat became like drops of blood, falling down upon the ground.”
— Luke 22:39-44

Before Jesus would endure the physical suffering you’ve just considered, He would experience emotional and spiritual torment that was far greater.

In the garden, the full scope of Jesus’ mission became readily apparent.

Jesus knew, once He left the garden, all that would occur: the treacherous betrayal by one of His own; being derided and made sport of by soldiers; a circus trial in which guilty politicians proclaimed judgment on an innocent man; brutal beatings; and then, the cross, the bearing of your sin and mine.

Without a doubt, this was the most terrible of missions ever given to an individual.

As you imagine the serene garden scene, contemplate the anguish Jesus must have felt; the mental strain as He tried to grapple with His Father’s will:

“Are you sure this is what You want Me to do?”

Take your time; there is no hurry. Allow your thoughts to center on Jesus in His most holy moment.

Remember that His anguish was so great, His sweat became like drops of blood.

Next, reflect on the cup set before Him.

Throughout the Old Testament, the cup signified God’s wrath; it was a symbol of God’s judgment against sin from which God makes the rebellious nations drink.

Jesus is the only one who ever lived whose sin didn’t contribute to that cup, who didn’t deserve to drink God’s wrath – and yet, here, in the Garden of Gethsemane, He surrendered to His Father’s will:

“Shall I not drink the cup the Father has given Me?”

Having considered Christ’s obedience, think about your own life mission.

Are you in a Garden of Gethsemane moment?

Is God calling you to do something you naturally want to resist, but His persistent voice is calling you forward?

Following God’s will often requires substantial sacrifice.

Is there a sacrifice God is asking you to make, perhaps on behalf of your family, for the sake of a friend, to serve your church?

Let our Lord’s example guide you to a new commitment to be faithful and obedient to your mission, regardless of the cost.

Lord, thank You for accepting Your mission; now I pray that You will grant me a willing heart to accept mine.

I can be so mindful and even resentful of the sacrifices required to love my family, serve in my vocation, be a part of Your family and church, that I forget the glory of Your prayer, “Not My will, but Yours be done.”

Lord, today, let this be my prayer also.

Come join the Adventure!

Skip 🕊️


This is an open forum where we look into and investigate the Rhema Mysteries of God's Word; and also other issues of importance for our day and time.

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