by Pastor Greg Laurie
May 24, 2004
A Man of Sorrows
Then Jesus brought them to an olive grove called Gethsemane, and he said, "Sit here while I go on ahead to pray." He took Peter and Zebedee's two sons, James and John, and he began to be filled with anguish and deep distress. (Matthew 26:36-37)
If I had the opportunity to know my entire future from today on, I think I would pass. I would rather not know. But Jesus, being God, knew everything about His future down to the smallest detail. As He agonized in the Garden of Gethsemane, He knew that in just a few short hours, He would be nailed to a Roman cross and crucified. He knew that He would be humiliated. He would be beaten. He would go through a horrendous whipping. He knew the great anguish that was ahead.
The Bible tells us Jesus was "a man of sorrows, acquainted with bitterest grief" (Isaiah 53:3). The Bible also says in Hebrews, "This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same temptations we do, yet he did not sin. So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it" (4:15).
In other words, God knows what you're going through. You have a High Priest - that is, Jesus - who has faced the challenges you presently face. Jesus was in this horrendous, difficult time, experiencing deep loneliness and abandonment by His friends. Yet He went through it.
The next time you face difficulty, the next time you face hardship, the next time you feel misunderstood and abandoned, remember that Jesus already has experienced those things. You have someone who understands you, sympathizes with you, and is there to strengthen you.
Copyright (c) 2004 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved. Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright (c) 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.