Jesus 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.” Luke 22:44
Thinking of consequential events: crossing the Rubicon, D-Day, signing the Declaration of Independence, Rosa Parks, and thousands of influential decisions woven into history.
The greatest decision ever? Easy.
Jesus said, “Not my will, Father, but yours be done.” He could have said “no” without consequence to Himself, but for the rest of us, no salvation. Unfathomable!
Let’s consider that “…being in agony, He prayed more earnestly, and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.” Jesus understood what saying “yes” meant. He would die for sin; not His sin, but my sin, yours, and everyone throughout history.
Dying for sin?
Jesus was both human and divine. The “human” suffered extreme physical pain for a few hours while His “eternal” nature (no past or present but just now) would suffer for all eternity for each of our sins. Some theologians call this “eternal suffering.”
For you and for me.
The author of Hebrews wrote, “How shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation?”
Examining the greatest decision ever made, let us note the following:
- Jesus made this decision during prayer, from His life that was based upon praying.
- Jesus made this decision while receiving ministry from an angel “…and there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening Him” (Luke 22:43).
- Jesus made this decision from love, so that grace could be given to us.
I have decisions to make about my life. You do too. The greatest decisions ever, come through prayer, supernatural strengthening (being filled with God’s Spirit), and are motivated by love.
Grace is the result of all great decisions.
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ – by grace you have been saved. Ephesians 2:4-5
Grace is a gift that we do not deserve. Our mistakes, our sins, and the results of our bad decisions landed on Jesus. While hanging on the cross, He looked at those surrounding the cross, and through the ages to you and me, saying, “Father, forgive them for they do not know what they are doing.”
Jesus did not deserve the suffering and we don’t deserve the forgiveness. That is grace!
Jesus suffered the pain, ugliness, sickness, persecution, and injustice – all of it accumulated in history – and gave the gift of forgiveness.
The greatest decision ever made! How about your decisions today?