by Dr. Stephen Rummage on April 01, 2021
April 08, 2021
I want us to look at a passage of Scripture that gives us a window into the surrendered heart of the Lord Jesus. An event that happened between Palm Sunday - as Jesus triumphantly entered the city of Jerusalem - and Good Friday - when Jesus sacrificially died for our sins on the cross. An event that began in a large, borrowed, second-story room in Jerusalem and that continued in a garden at the foot of the Mount of Olives, which was known as “Gethsemane.” In that upper room and in that garden, Jesus offered His heart in full surrender to the Father… all because of His great love for us.
Jesus surrendered Himself for you. And He calls you, as His follower, to live a life of surrender to God. After studying Luke 22, I believe this text reveals three aspects of a surrendered life.
The Struggles of a Surrendered Life (vv.17-20)
“And He took a cup, and when He had given thanks He said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves. For I tell you that from now on I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” And He took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is My body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of Me.” And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in My blood.””
There are two symbols that Luke uses here to describe the Lord’s surrender: First, the broken bread which represents His body, broken by the burden of our sin on the cross. Second, the outpoured cup, which represents His blood, poured out to pay the price for our sin on the cross. God sent His Son to pour out His life in a new covenant; a covenant made with His blood. A covenant that reaches beyond our guilt and sin to make us right with God forever. The struggles of sin are the reason Jesus surrendered Himself to die on the cross.
The Secret of a Surrendered Life (vv. 41-42)
“And he withdrew from them about a stone's throw, and knelt down and prayed, 42 saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.””
In God’s Word - especially in the Old Testament - the image of “the cup” was often used to symbolize the wrath of God upon sin. In His flesh, Jesus did not want to drink the cup of God’s wrath for all the sin owed to every sinner who had ever lived or ever would live. He knew the pain that would bring to His soul, and so, Jesus prayed, “Remove this cup from me.” But even as He expressed His own desire and request to the Father, Jesus said, “Not my will, but yours, be done.” This literally meant, “Let your will happen in my life.” The secret to surrender is this: trusting that God’s will is always the absolute best for you, whatever His will may be.
The Strength of a Surrendered Life (vv. 43-44)
“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.”
There are two details about His prayer in Gethsemane that appear only in Luke’s account of the Gospel: The angel from heaven who strengthened Him, and the agony that caused Him to sweat like great drops of blood. The word that I want to pay particular attention to is use of the word: “strengthening.” The greek word means to be invigorated, but in other places of scripture it means to be physically strengthened by food, or emotionally strengthened by receiving good news, or spiritually strengthened by the power of God’s own hand. As Jesus surrendered Himself to God the Father in prayer, He found strength. He found strength to take the cup of suffering on the cross that awaited Him.
The same is true for you. Your greatest strength is found at the point of surrender. If you have any questions on salvation or if you have any prayer needs, you can call (405) 302-3030 or you can text your first name to (405) 256-4701. We would love to connect with you.
Watch the full sermon here.