The Mystery of the Three Prayers in Gethsamene during Christ's Last Passover
Posted Apr 18, 2022 by Danutasn Brown in Everlasting Gospel
An incredible amount of things happened on the Passover and the first day of Unleavened Bread, when Jesus was slain (see this article for clarity on the dating). The lamb was slain at 3pm on Passover on Thursday. Then after sunset on Thursday it was the 1st day of Unleavened Bread, having finished eating and teaching one last time, Jesus goes into the Garden of Gethsemane to pray to His Father. He takes only Peter, James, and John with Him – the closest of His disciples. They were the 3 humans in the entire world that knew Jesus best; they were His best friends.
Christ’s suffering began as he entered the garden.
Then saith he unto them [Peter, James, and John], ‘My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me.’ (Matt 26:38)
We know He is given over to the unrestrained hatred of man a little later on when He allows Himself to be arrested, saying “this is your hour, and the power of darkness…” Luke 22:53. But just prior to that, He is praying to His Father “to let this cup pass from me”. Was it possible that He didn’t need to be given over to the power of darkness? Was it God who forced Jesus to go through the suffering of the cross experience, because Jesus says in His prayer to God “not what I will, but what thou wilt”?
First let us look at what specifically Jesus prays:
“Father, if Thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.” And there appeared an angel unto Him from Heaven, strengthening Him. 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. (Luke 22:42-44)
What is this cup that He must drink?
The cup of the wrath of God is spoken as being given to humanity in Revelation:
- Those who receive the mark of the beast “shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb." (Rev 14:10)
- "And great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of His wrath." (Revelation 16:19)
This is a direct reference to famous passages by Isaiah and Jeremiah, and was a figure of expression used by the peoples of those times. Notice:
Awake, awake, stand up O Jerusalem, which hast drunk at the hand of the LORD the cup of His fury; thou hast drunken the dregs of the cup of trembling, and wrung them out. (Isaiah 51:17)
And speaking of the judgment upon all the nations, including Israel, by Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon, God says this:
“For many nations and great kings shall serve themselves of them also: and I will recompense them according to their deeds, and according to the works of their hands. For thus saith the LORD God of Israel unto me; ‘Take the wine cup of this fury at my hand, and cause all the nations to whom I send thee, to drink it. And they shall drink, and be moved, and be mad, because of the sword I will send among them.’” (Jeremiah 25:14-16)
We see here that God “recompensed them according to their deeds.” Prior to this, God had been holding back the winds of strife, calling on those nations to repent, but finally, due to the hardness of their heart, He lets them reap what they have sown (Gal 6:7) – He gives them the cup of fury, the cup they have chosen, and allowed the sword of man to run riot, which was Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon. God didn’t tell Nebuchadnezzar what to do, but He understood human nature’s desire for power and war and the Nebuchadnezzar would destroy all those nations.
Something similar happens in the 3 Angels’ Message of Revelation 14. Babylon first “made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication,” and they became mad. At the same time, the final message of God’s love was given to the world, and all men had to decide whether to worship God or the beast. This is similar to the decision given to the Ancient Israelites – Jesus or Caesar. And what did they say?
…and he [Pontius Pilate] saith unto the Jews, ‘Behold your King!’
But they cried out, ‘Away with him, away with him, crucify him.’
Pilate saith unto them, ‘Shall I crucify your King?’
The chief priests answered, ‘We have no king but Caesar.’
Then delivered he him therefore unto them to be crucified. (John 19:14-16)
They chose Caesar, sealing their fate. Jesus had cried over Jerusalem when He came in on His triumphal entry, on the 10th day of the first month, which was when the lamb was to be brought into the home until the Passover day, which was on the 14th (Exodus 12:3). So we know that Jesus knew Jerusalem was doomed. So what was He praying for that night in Gethsemane?
The Mystery of the Three Prayers in Gethsamene
Throughout His life on earth He had walked in the light of God's presence… But now He seemed to be shut out from the light of God's sustaining presence. Now He was numbered with the transgressors. The guilt of fallen humanity He must bear. Upon Him who knew no sin must be laid the iniquity of us all. So dreadful does sin appear to Him, so great is the weight of guilt which He must bear, that He is tempted to fear it will shut Him out forever from His Father's love. Feeling how terrible is the wrath of God against transgression, He exclaims, “My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death.”
He is praying that He need not be shut off from God’s presence as the transgressor will feel. But what would need to happen for Him not to have to go through with this? If God is the one requiring it, then it seems useless to pray, because God’s will would have been set on this from way back (also, if God required it, couldn’t Jesus have been born way earlier in human history?).
We have to think that the date Jesus was born as a human was chosen because it was the best date FOR US. It was when we would be most receptive to Him, and His teaching would be of most value to the human race. The lessons of 1500 years of history would be learned, including the first fall of Jerusalem, and thus man would be prepared to heed what Jesus said. But is that what happened?
No. Even on the last night before going to trial, the disciples are arguing over who will be the greatest. They refuse to accept that Jesus is about to die. They still are expecting to be set up as princes over a temporal kingdom that would conquer Rome. If they had understood, would Jesus have needed to walk the winepress alone? Could it be that what Jesus was praying for was for someone to understand Him, to go through it with Him, that some human would reach out in faith and thus Jesus could maintain His connection with His Father?
Let’s look at what Jesus actually prayed. In Matthew and Luke He says:
" my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt."
But in Mark it is written slightly different. Jesus prays:
"Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee; take away this cup from me: nevertheless not what I will, but what thou wilt."
“All things are possible.” Though it seems that no man has understood, I know that it is possible that you could still reach them. Please try one more time. And who would Jesus’s hope for sympathy and compassion be in? Wouldn’t it be in the 3 disciples closest to Him, who saw Him suffering?
As they approached the garden, the disciples had marked the change that came over their Master. Never before had they seen Him so utterly sad and silent. As He proceeded, this strange sadness deepened; yet they dared not question Him as to the cause. His form swayed as if He were about to fall. Upon reaching the garden, the disciples looked anxiously for His usual place of retirement, that their Master might rest. Every step that He now took was with labored effort. He groaned aloud, as if suffering under the pressure of a terrible burden. Twice His companions supported Him, or He would have fallen to the earth.
Why didn’t they dare question Him as to the cause? Could it be that deep down they cherished some unsanctified aspiration, and to know the answer meant that bubble of worldly hope bursting? Or were they scared that if they asked, Jesus would ask them to bear some of it too? Or did they actually partly believe that God was angry at His Son, and this thought they didn’t want to entertain more? Or that this was what was required by God because of some sin they had done on their part?
Near the entrance to the garden, Jesus left all but three of the disciples, bidding them pray for themselves and for Him. With Peter, James, and John, He entered its secluded recesses. These three disciples were Christ's closest companions. They had beheld His glory on the mount of transfiguration; they had seen Moses and Elijah talking with Him; they had heard the voice from heaven; now in His great struggle, Christ desired their presence near Him. Often they had passed the night with Him in this retreat. On these occasions, after a season of watching and prayer, they would sleep undisturbed at a little distance from their Master, until He awoke them in the morning to go forth anew to labor. But now He desired them to spend the night with Him in prayer. Yet He could not bear that even they should witness the agony He was to endure.
“Tarry ye here,” He said, “and watch with Me.”
He went a little distance from them—not so far but that they could both see and hear Him—and fell prostrate upon the ground. He felt that by sin He was being separated from His Father. The gulf was so broad, so black, so deep, that His spirit shuddered before it. This agony He must not exert His divine power to escape. As man He must suffer the consequences of man's sin. As man He must endure the wrath of God against transgression.
Christ was now standing in a different attitude from that in which He had ever stood before. His suffering can best be described in the words of the prophet, “Awake, O sword, against My shepherd, and against the man that is My fellow, saith the Lord of hosts.” Zechariah 13:7. As the substitute and surety for sinful man, Christ was suffering under divine justice. He saw what justice meant. Hitherto He had been as an intercessor for others; now He longed to have an intercessor for Himself.
He wanted His close disciples, whom He had explained His mission to, to pray for Him, to intercede for Him. Man was trapped in a false justice system that “every sin must be punished,” (DA 761.4) and now Jesus would pay the ransom fee to free man. But if man could just realize how good their Father in Heaven was! Surely after spending 3 ½ years with God’s son and seeing the loving agape character of their Father’s character manifested, they would realize their justice system was warped and perverted? Would Peter, James, and John see in the suffering of Jesus the truth of their own weakness and sinfulness, their own lack of faith, that what Jesus was going through was due to their own wilful determination to misunderstand Him? Would they realize the depth of their sin and come into true repentance, seeing Jesus's suffering as being caused by them?
The Mindstate of the Disciples
But what do we know about the disciples? They still didn’t believe God would bring forgiveness to the gentiles. They still didn’t realize man’s hatred of God, represented in their rejection of Jesus. They still didn’t understand their own condemning nature and the inability to fulfill the law in themselves. They still relied on self, missing the very lessons taught on the night of the Last Supper:
- The footwashing – “If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet.
- We still see them deliberately contradicting the word of Jesus, thinking they know more than Him.
"Simon Peter said unto him, 'Lord, whither goest thou?'
Jesus answered him, 'Whither I go, thou canst not follow me now; but thou shalt follow me afterwards.'
Peter said unto him, 'Lord, why cannot I follow thee now? I will lay down my life for thy sake.'
Jesus answered him, 'Wilt thou lay down thy life for my sake? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, The cock shall not crow, till thou hast denied me thrice.'
- We see Thomas saying “We know not where you goest,” when Jesus had already told them that He would die and be resurrected. And we see Philip asking to see the Father, and it will be enough for Him; not realizing that Jesus had been showing them the Father the whole time. Such queries right before Jesus died could easily have depressed Him, and we can imagine ourselves in the mirror saying these words of Jesus with exasperation (though we know He said it with tender compassion and pity): Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, 'Show us the Father?' Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works. Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works' sake. (John 14:9-11)
- And even after all the encouragement He has given them, and the promise of rooms in His Father’s house, their grief at the loss of worldly hopes is causing them not to see that which is spiritual. Jesus calls them out on this: "But now I go my way to him that sent me; and none of you asketh me, 'Whither goest thou?' But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart. (John 16:5-6)
Jesus severely tempted in Gethsemane
And what was to be gained by this sacrifice? How hopeless appeared the guilt and ingratitude of men! In its hardest features Satan pressed the situation upon the Redeemer: The people who claim to be above all others in temporal and spiritual advantages have rejected You. They are seeking to destroy You, the foundation, the center and seal of the promises made to them as a peculiar people. One of Your own disciples, who has listened to Your instruction, and has been among the foremost in church activities, will betray You. One of Your most zealous followers will deny You. All will forsake You. Christ's whole being abhorred the thought. That those whom He had undertaken to save, those whom He loved so much, should unite in the plots of Satan, this pierced His soul. The conflict was terrible. Its measure was the guilt of His nation, of His accusers and betrayer, the guilt of a world lying in wickedness. The sins of men weighed heavily upon Christ, and the sense of God's wrath against sin was crushing out His life. (DA 687.1)
All will forsake Jesus and, to varying extents, “unite in the plots of Satan.” The fact that the disciples still didn’t understand Christ’s mission showed that even they were confused by the misconceptions Satan had placed into the Jewish nation/human race. Notice also that the pain Jesus felt was in proportion to the guilt of His nation, and thus the repentance and understanding of man – a lessening of his guilt – would actually decrease Jesus suffering, for that was “its measure”.
Behold Him contemplating the price to be paid for the human soul. In His agony He clings to the cold ground, as if to prevent Himself from being drawn farther from God. The chilling dew of night falls upon His prostrate form, but He heeds it not. From His pale lips comes the bitter cry, “O My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me.” Yet even now He adds, “Nevertheless not as I will, but as Thou wilt.”
The human heart longs for sympathy in suffering. This longing Christ felt to the very depths of His being. In the supreme agony of His soul He came to His disciples with a yearning desire to hear some words of comfort from those whom He had so often blessed and comforted, and shielded in sorrow and distress. The One who had always had words of sympathy for them was now suffering superhuman agony, and He longed to know that they were praying for Him and for themselves. How dark seemed the malignity of sin! Terrible was the temptation to let the human race bear the consequences of its own guilt, while He stood innocent before God. If He could only know that His disciples understood and appreciated this, He would be strengthened.
Jesus “contemplated the price to be paid for the human soul.” Surely Father, they can understand without me having to pay the penalty of sin! Is it really the only way? Will it even work? Satan is also tempting Him that it won’t work; it will merely cause Jesus to die eternally with mankind. “Satan told Him that if He became the surety for a sinful world, the separation would be eternal. He would be identified with Satan's kingdom, and would nevermore be one with God.” (DA 686.5)
Jesus prays for His words to reach into the heart of man and break free the prison of Satan’s counterfeit justice He is in, and believe that God really is a Father who loves them. Jesus had taught them to pray by calling God Father, and He had reminded them of God’s goodness just prior to His great prayer of John 17. Was this terrible experience He has to go through really the only way for man to come to repentance? Peter, James, John, can’t you see, that God doesn’t require this, that it is you who believe these false ideas of our Heavenly Father? Isn't such a realization implied in this suggestion of Jesus that soon they will understand more fully?
At that day ye shall ask in my name: and I say not unto you, that I will pray the Father for you: For the Father Himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God. (John 16:26-27)
After Jesus prays, where does He go to see if God will answer it and say that He need not drink the cup? He goes to His disciples, to see if the prayer has, through God’s spirit, had an effect on them. But though the Spirit of God was willing to work on their hearts, their flesh was weak (Matthew 26:41)
Rising with painful effort, He staggered to the place where He had left His companions. But He “findeth them asleep.” Had He found them praying, He would have been relieved. Had they been seeking refuge in God, that satanic agencies might not prevail over them, He would have been comforted by their steadfast faith. But they had not heeded the repeated warning, “Watch and pray.” At first they had been much troubled to see their Master, usually so calm and dignified, wrestling with a sorrow that was beyond comprehension. They had prayed as they heard the strong cries of the sufferer. They did not intend to forsake their Lord, but they seemed paralyzed by a stupor which they might have shaken off if they had continued pleading with God. They did not realize the necessity of watchfulness and earnest prayer in order to withstand temptation.
Just before He bent His footsteps to the garden, Jesus had said to the disciples, “All ye shall be offended because of Me this night.” They had given Him the strongest assurance that they would go with Him to prison and to death. And poor, self-sufficient Peter had added, “Although all shall be offended, yet will not I.” Mark 14:27, 29. But the disciples trusted to themselves. They did not look to the mighty Helper as Christ had counseled them to do. Thus when the Saviour was most in need of their sympathy and prayers, they were found asleep. Even Peter was sleeping.
And John, the loving disciple who had leaned upon the breast of Jesus, was asleep. Surely, the love of John for his Master should have kept him awake. His earnest prayers should have mingled with those of his loved Saviour in the time of His supreme sorrow. The Redeemer had spent entire nights praying for His disciples, that their faith might not fail…
This shows us that humans have the ability to determine how much Jesus suffers. The possibility of the cup being passed from Jesus lay not with God, but with us humans. If Jesus taking on our sin was all predetermined, and required by God then why would it have helped to have Peter pray for Him? It would be just an empty comfort.
Addtionally, we learn how important it is to pray for other people’s faith. We often tend to pray for other people’s health, their problems, their character – but how often do we pray for their faith? Jesus of course would have prayed for the disciples to understand, to get along, to be humble, to have courage; but we see what is most important: faith. Faith is the source of all those other things, with faith, they will study the Bible and understand, they will be brave, they will not glorify in self, they will not stumble at obstacles, and they will ask God for the love and wisdom they need. Faith is the connection to the Spirit of God, which brings all the good gifts of God.
Again the Son of God was seized with superhuman agony, and fainting and exhausted, He staggered back to the place of His former struggle. His suffering was even greater than before. As the agony of soul came upon Him, “His sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.” The cypress and palm trees were the silent witnesses of His anguish. From their leafy branches dropped heavy dew upon His stricken form, as if nature wept over its Author wrestling alone with the powers of darkness.
… Now had come the hour of the power of darkness. Now His voice was heard on the still evening air, not in tones of triumph, but full of human anguish. The words of the Saviour were borne to the ears of the drowsy disciples, “O My Father, if this cup may not pass away from Me, except I drink it, Thy will be done.”
The first impulse of the disciples was to go to Him; but He had bidden them tarry there, watching unto prayer. When Jesus came to them, He found them still sleeping. Again He had felt a longing for companionship, for some words from His disciples which would bring relief, and break the spell of darkness that well-nigh overpowered Him. But their eyes were heavy; “neither wist they what to answer Him.” His presence aroused them. They saw His face marked with the bloody sweat of agony, and they were filled with fear. His anguish of mind they could not understand. “His visage was so marred more than any man, and His form more than the sons of men.” Isaiah 52:14.
A word from His disciples would have broken the spell of “darkness that well-nigh overpowered Him"? Man has such an amazing capacity to help the Son of God! It is amazing to think of the power God has given to man to help in the work! But what Jesus wanted was not action – “the first impulse of the disciples was to go to Him” – what Jesus wanted was prayer, a belief that their Father would answer them too just as He answered Jesus. But they still didn’t believe it; they instead slept. Did they even care about or understand their part in Christ's ministry?
The weakness of His disciples awakened the sympathy of Jesus. He feared that they would not be able to endure the test which would come upon them in His betrayal and death. He did not reprove them, but said, “Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation.” Even in His great agony, He was seeking to excuse their weakness.
The Fierce Conflict of that Last Prayer
But the temptation would come to Jesus, seeing there was not a man to comfort Him, to think: do these humans even want to be saved? They seem to willfully refuse to listen, shouldn't they reap what they have sown? Shouldn't I just let them have their choice, rather than taking it all upon myself when I can't even see that I will be make it through this trial, let alone any of them! Won’t they just misunderstand this, just like they misunderstood everything else I have done throughout the course of their history? This is the temptation of the prayer the third time.
Turning away, Jesus sought again His retreat, and fell prostrate, overcome by the horror of a great darkness. The humanity of the Son of God trembled in that trying hour. He prayed not now for His disciples that their faith might not fail, but for His own tempted, agonized soul. The awful moment had come—that moment which was to decide the destiny of the world. The fate of humanity trembled in the balance. Christ might even now refuse to drink the cup apportioned to guilty man. It was not yet too late. He might wipe the bloody sweat from His brow, and leave man to perish in his iniquity. He might say, Let the transgressor receive the penalty of his sin, and I will go back to My Father. Will the Son of God drink the bitter cup of humiliation and agony? Will the innocent suffer the consequences of the curse of sin, to save the guilty? The words fall tremblingly from the pale lips of Jesus, “O My Father, if this cup may not pass away from Me, except I drink it, Thy will be done.”
Three times has He uttered that prayer. Three times has humanity shrunk from the last, crowning sacrifice. But now the history of the human race comes up before the world's Redeemer. He sees that the transgressors of the law, if left to themselves, must perish. He sees the helplessness of man. He sees the power of sin. The woes and lamentations of a doomed world rise before Him. He beholds its impending fate, and His decision is made. He will save man at any cost to Himself. He accepts His baptism of blood, that through Him perishing millions may gain everlasting life. He has left the courts of heaven, where all is purity, happiness, and glory, to save the one lost sheep, the one world that has fallen by transgression. And He will not turn from His mission. He will become the propitiation of a race that has willed to sin. His prayer now breathes only submission: “If this cup may not pass away from Me, except I drink it, Thy will be done.”
Having made the decision, He fell dying to the ground from which He had partially risen. Where now were His disciples, to place their hands tenderly beneath the head of their fainting Master, and bathe that brow, marred indeed more than the sons of men? The Saviour trod the wine press alone, and of the people there was none with Him.
“Three times has humanity shrunk from the last crowning sacrifice.” This shows that the prayers were for the Father to try to reach humanity by some other way than for Him to be separated from God as a transgressor. God was willing to forgive man, if man would understand the depth of His sinfulness. But that which is not recognized as sin, cannot be cured – it must first be perceived, revealed, and then repentance comes.
These three prayers proved to the universe that there was no other way. The idea that man deserved to die for sin, and therefore a death was necessary for us to be forgiven, was engrained into our fallen DNA, and Jesus had to pay it. It also shows that we will not forgive others their wrongs they have done to us unless there is some form of blood to appease us. Thus Jesus satisfied both these conditions.
It is tempting for us, in hindsight, to think that having realized the goodness of God, the sacrifice of Christ was not necessary. We may think: "I didn't need to see the blood of the son of God to forgive others, and I never thought that God's wrath needed to be appeased! I always saw Him as loving!" So did this temptation come to Jesus – the sons of men should be able to understand!
But “now the history of the human race comes up before the world's Redeemer. He sees that the transgressors of the law, if left to themselves, must perish. He sees the helplessness of man. He sees the power of sin.” (DA 690.3)
This we too must see, and realize our desparate need of a saviour.
We should not be fooled due to our having grown in understanding from our forefathers. All that we have learned from them – the evils of war, loving those different to us, calling God our Father, we have inherited in the aftermath of Christ’s sacrifice and the birth of His church. It all comes to us because of Peter’s repentance, and that ability to preach that repentance to the people of Israel – that is the founding of the church.
"Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know: Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain: Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it. This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses... Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ."
Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, "Men and brethren, what shall we do?"
Then Peter said unto them, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call."
And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, "Save yourselves from this untoward generation."
Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.
That was when Peter was a new man. In Gethsemane, he is still sleeping – Christ’s prayers can’t reach his still self-satisfied heart. Would that we would realize this about ourselves too! How difficult it is to reach us and wake us up! But though we were asleep to Christ's suffering, God the Father and His angels weren't:
But God suffered with His Son. Angels beheld the Saviour's agony. They saw their Lord enclosed by legions of satanic forces, His nature weighed down with a shuddering, mysterious dread. There was silence in heaven. No harp was touched. Could mortals have viewed the amazement of the angelic host as in silent grief they watched the Father separating His beams of light, love, and glory from His beloved Son, they would better understand how offensive in His sight is sin.
The worlds unfallen and the heavenly angels had watched with intense interest as the conflict drew to its close. Satan and his confederacy of evil, the legions of apostasy, watched intently this great crisis in the work of redemption. The powers of good and evil waited to see what answer would come to Christ's thrice-repeated prayer. Angels had longed to bring relief to the divine sufferer, but this might not be. No way of escape was found for the Son of God. In this awful crisis, when everything was at stake, when the mysterious cup trembled in the hand of the sufferer, the heavens opened, a light shone forth amid the stormy darkness of the crisis hour, and the mighty angel who stands in God's presence, occupying the position from which Satan fell, came to the side of Christ. The angel came not to take the cup from Christ's hand, but to strengthen Him to drink it, with the assurance of the Father's love. He came to give power to the divine-human suppliant. He pointed Him to the open heavens, telling Him of the souls that would be saved as the result of His sufferings. He assured Him that His Father is greater and more powerful than Satan, that His death would result in the utter discomfiture of Satan, and that the kingdom of this world would be given to the saints of the Most High. He told Him that He would see of the travail of His soul, and be satisfied, for He would see a multitude of the human race saved, eternally saved.
There was no way of escape except for pay the ransom that we set, for though God and Jesus said:
Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, 'Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure.'
Then said I, 'Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God.'
We were the ones who required that the body for Jesus, the perfect sinless lamb of God, die. Only this would ease our terror and anxiety regarding our Father and Heaven. This was a horrendous idea for us to have about God, but God understood, satisfied it, overcame, and showed us that there is life beyond this misconception.
For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh. (Romans 8:3)
Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. (Hebrews 2:14-15)
We were all the time fearful of God because of our sinfulness, thinking there was only one cure when the cure was actually something else. But God gave us what we thought the cure was, that we might not fear Him, so that finally we would accept what His actual cure is.
but now has been revealed by the appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel... (2 Timothy 1:10)
For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. (Romans 8:2)
So having overcome the law of sin and death, we enter into the law of the Spirit of life in Christ. What is that law? It is found in His relation to His Father (John 17:3), the faith He has in His Father. It is to stay constantly connected to the bread of life, and know God like He does:
No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. (Matthew 11:27)
For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. (Romans 8:15)