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As I ponder the last days of Jesus’ life, there’s one phrase that gets me every time. Jesus is surrounded by a Roman cohort, the temple big wigs, and his own disciples. Melee breaks out. Swords clash and ears fly (OK - ear flies.)

Jesus looks at Peter and tells him to put away the sword. Then He asks Peter one of the most significant and telling questions of His ministry (and He has asked a lot of questions!)

Or do you think that I cannot appeal to My Father, and He will at once put at My disposal more than twelve legions of angels? - Matthew 26:53 NASB

Or as I like to translate it - “Don’t you know I could pray?”

In all of Jesus’ healing ministry one thing is lacking - He never prayed for the sick. He took authority over sickness and disease. There were times when He looked to heaven and thanked His Father for what the He was about to do. But Jesus never made an appeal to heaven in the working of a miracle.

It’s not that He didn’t pray though. The way I understand it from Jesus words, He spent time with the Father daily—went off early and often to pray and be alone with the Father. In His time in communion with Abba, the Father would show Him things Jesus would face that day, or in the future, and Jesus would submit to the Father’s priorities. Every day Jesus answered the call afresh and anew—Here am I, send me!

In fact, He had just spent three hours appealing to the Father, and received the resounding “NO” of heaven. He was coming out of the very first prayer He had ever uttered that God denied.

"My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will, but as You will." - Matthew 26:39 NASB

Yet this does not change His confidence. He knew that He knew that a single request—one simple petition—would bring all of heaven to His defense.

I don’t pray like that. My heart doesn’t rise up and say, “Don’t you know I could pray?”

But it should.

Why shouldn’t I have the same confidence in my heavenly Father. Why, when faced with seeming impossibility, don’t I look it in the eye and tell that old liar, “Back off! Don’t you know I could pray?”

I repent!

Lord, from this day, I ask You to forgive my prayerlessness and help me know the Father as You know Him. Grant me the place of prayer. Give me confidence in the power of prayer. Give me the boldness to stand up and say, “Don’t you know I could pray?”

BenHeadshotThanks for stopping by.

Walk in the light,

Ben

1

By His knowledge the Righteous One,
My Servant, will justify the many,
As He will bear their iniquities.

Isaiah 53:11 NASB

Where does the knowledge, the “how to” come from that would enable Jesus to undo the world wide slave mastery of sin? How did He obtain such wonderful knowledge?

God’s righteous servant found the way to the greatest wealth of knowledge – the source of knowledge.

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge;
Fools despise wisdom and instruction.

Proverbs 1:7 NASB

What does the fear of the Lord really look like? Jesus walked out the fear of the Lord the way it is intended for us. The place you see it most clearly is in Gethsemane.

He did not cower before the Father. He did not salute Him with some sort of religious reverence.

He stood before the Father complete exposed – all His emotion – all His fears – all His desires – and offered them to the Father in the words “not My will, but Thine be done.”

This is the fear of the Lord, and this is the beginning of knowledge.

When you lay your – well yourself – on the altar – you will know – and be known.

And He went a little beyond them, and fell on His face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will, but as Thou wilt.” (Matthew 26:39 NASB)

Jesus, at this point has a really good idea of what He is facing.

He knows Judas, His friend, is at that very moment betraying Him to His enemies.

He knows that He is going to be denied by His closest companions, even those who have declared their allegiance to Him when everyone else turned away.

He knows He will face physical torture.

He knows they will strip Him down before the crowd

He knows the very ones who 4 days before had cried out ‘Hosanna’ would soon be crying ‘Crucify Him’

He knows they are about to kill Him in the most horrid and painful death imaginable.

But

None of these bring Him to the garden tonight.

Not one of these draw drops of blood from His sweat glands

No pain or rejection of man causes Him to cry out to the Father

What then?

He knew that He faced one thing that He could not bear.

One thing He had never faced since before He separated the sea from the dry ground.

That one thing –

God, His own Father was going to turn His back on Jesus.

He was going to be God forsaken

The Spirit that had dwelt in Him from His mother’s womb and empowered Him from the day He went under the flow of the Jordan, would be leaving Him alone.

Jesus, who had never uttered a prayer that was not answered, found heavens of brass tonight.

Not only did He face separation from the Father, but He was going to drink the cup of God’ wrath. The cup that had been filled by every sin, since the day Adam took the fruit from his wife’s hand and betrayed God in the garden, to the hurtful thing you said to your wife this morning.

God was going to look on Jesus, and demand that He drink every last drop of God’s wrath. You can see this cup described in Jeremiah 25. It's staggering.

Just the thought of it nearly killed Jesus.

The Father sent an angel to strengthen Him.

But the Father would not relent. This cup of wrath must be consumed, and it could only be Jesus.

There was no other lamb

None spotless

None worthy

None holy

Only Jesus

O Thank you Jesus

O Thank you Lord

O Thank you my King, my Jesus

 

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