And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed, saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.” And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. And being in agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground. – Luke 22:41-44 ESV
In the Bible this section of the book of Luke is labeled; Jesus Prays on the Mount of Olives. Jesus is in agony, He knows what is in front of Him. In front of Him is a pain so great that it created its own word; Excruciating. It comes from the base word that CRUCIFY also comes from. The next sections following this one are labeled: Betrayal and Arrest of Jesus, Peter Denies Jesus, Jesus Is Mocked, Jesus Before the Council…and of course we know its conclusion; Pilate Delivers Jesus to Be Crucified. Jesus DID NOT want to go through this pain and separation, that was the cross. Isaiah when He prophesied about this moment in time, hundreds of years earlier acknowledged what the Messiah would experience. It is written:… he poured out his soul to death and was numbered with the transgressors… (Isaiah 53:12). Jesus told of how he felt about this moment in the Garden: Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.” And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.” (Matthew 26:38-39) This actually happened three times. Jesus begged the Father, “if there is another way please, Daddy, I don’t want to do this. The thought of doing this makes my soul unto death. BUT, Papa, Abba, I want what you want, not what I want!”
Leader, we have to ask ourselves what was Jesus talking about? If there is any other way to do what? Jesus was talking about THE WAY to bring an unholy man and reconcile him to a HOLY GOD. Jesus and God the Father were talking about: The REDEMPTIVE PLAN OF GOD. God in HIS plan of REDEMPTION, sent JESUS with the ministry of RECONCILIATION. Those are 2 interesting words that are NOT synonymous, but seem to be 2 pieces of the same puzzle. We must understand that sin separates us from God. In Genesis 3, we chose our way, instead of God’s way and we created a separation. Since that moment in time, God has been working to redeem us, and He sent His son on that mission, and Jesus’ job is to reconcile us back to God. We cannot have fellowship with God without dealing with the issue of Sin. It is written: All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation. Redeem means: To recover ownership of something by buying it back. To liberate by payment of a ransom. To set free by force. To save, rescue- To clear, release from debt or blame, to expiate, atone for. Reconcile means: To restore a friendly relationship; to bring back to harmony. To make things compatible or consistent. Do you understand how God the Father wills that NONE shall perish and is willing to REDEEM them all through the BLOOD OF CHRIST. Christ then reconciles us, and then we help others reconcile with God the Father, through Jesus His only begotten Son. See how the 2 are 2 pieces of the same puzzle? There was no other way and Jesus paid it all! As Jesus said on the cross: “It is finished” (John 19:29) The original text is Tetelestai. Strong’s concordance says this about Tetelestai: (a) I end, finish, (b) I fulfill, accomplish, (c) I pay. From telos; to end, i.e. Complete, execute, conclude, discharge.
Conduit, there was no OTHER WAY! If fellowship with God and Man is possible BY ANY OTHER MEANS…then let this cup pass from me. That was in essence what Jesus said, “Nevertheless not my will be done, but thine will be done”. Pastor Chuck Smith put it as simply as it can be put, “Had REDEMPTION been possible by man being good, by man being religious, by man being sincere, by man keeping a law, then Jesus would not have had to die on the cross. There would have been a STANDARD set, and then we would all be required to KEEP THAT STANDARD. BUT NO MAN can keep God’s STANDARD.” God’s standard is perfection. It is written: For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it. (James 2:10) The way has now been made, and paid for, so that sinful man can approach a holy God, through the new covenant, which is the BLOOD OF JESUS CHRIST. It is HIS BLOOD that washes us and purges us from our sins and then we are granted access to God the Father. No man can reconcile to God by himself, however, a MAN-GOD can! Fully man, and fully GOD; Yahweh, incarnate – JESUS, perfection! We all need the REDEMPTIVE PLAN OF GOD worked out personally, in our lives. We reconcile with God, through acceptance of the paid price of JESUS. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. (2 Corinthians 5:21) In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace. (Ephesians 1:7) He entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption. Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins. (Hebrews 9:12,22) This is why we celebrate Christmas. Not because Jesus was incarnated at some point in HIS STORY. We don’t ask for MORE CHRIST- Christmas because JESUS was born in a manger. We need MORE CHRIST, because JESUS died on a cross, as THE ONLY WAY for the Father to REDEEM US, and for JESUS to reconcile us back to the Father, through Him, the Son! People get ready, our Salvation is near! Remember Victory is already secured by Jesus: And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death.