Jesus: let go

'Despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief ...
we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted.  But He was wounded for our transgressions; He was crushed for our iniquities; upon Him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed.  All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.  He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet He opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so he opened not his mouth . ... He was cut off of the land of the living, stricken for the transgression of my people. ...  There was no deceit in his mouth.  Yet it was the will of the Lord to crush him; he has put him to grief." ~ Isaiah 53, 3-10

Each Wednesday I participate with Ann Voskamp and a few other bloggers in community over at a holy experience sharing a practice.  This week our practice is "The practice of letting go."

Letting go: a seriously hard task for me at times.  I tend to want to hold on ... make things better.  Fix.  I have a very "motherly" nurturing personality.  Controlling?  Perfectionist?.

In thinking on this subject 'letting go' my mind and heart instantly go back to Calvary (my children and I are studying this book and will be looking at a few of Ann's suggestions as we approach Easter) for Jesus to come to earth and die, I would say He had to let go of a few things, wouldn't you?  He gave up His home: heaven and His life.  "{Jesus though} He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped." {emphasis added}

"He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." ~ 2 Corinthians 5:21 

Jesus had to 'let go.'

"And He went a little beyond them, and fell to the ground and began to pray." (Mark 14:35a)

The verb in the Greek phrase translated "fell to the ground" is the imperfect tense, suggesting a continual action.  In other words, Jesus literally kept falling to the ground in prayer, crying out to His Father, then rising to His feet, only to fall again to the ground in prayer.

Portraits of a serene Jesus kneeling beside a rock, crowned in moonlight, mislead us.  Mark described a Jesus wrestling with His destiny, pacing, falling to the ground, desperately petitioning the Father for relief, and entreating Him as a young son would his daddy: "Abba! Father!" (v. 36a)

Jesus called God "Abba," an extremely intimate word—one not even the most pious Jew would utter for fear of offending the Lord.  Jesus, however, deliberately invoked His Father's most intimate, tender name and made a startling request: 
"[He] began to pray that if it were possible, the hour might pass Him by.  And He was saying, 'Abba!  Father!  All things are possible for You; remove this cup from Me; yet not what I will, but You will." (vv.35b-36) 

How could this be?  The Son of God desired relief from His divine commission?  Here in Gethsemane, Jesus seemed squeezed, pressed between duty and desire.  Yet, despite feeling the weight of the world's sin pressing down on Him, He willingly accepted His cup. ... 

"Again He went away and prayed, saying the same words.  And again He came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were very heavy; and they did not know what to answer Him." (Mark 14:39-40)

"And He came the third time, and said to them, 'Are you still sleeping and resting?  It is enough; the hour has come; behold, the Son of Man is being betrayed into the hands of sinners.  Get up, let us be going; behold, the one who betrays Me is at hand!" (vvs. 41-42)

Jesus resolved that 'the hour [had] come,' and He turned to face His destiny.  This was God's plan.  There was no escaping it.  Jesus had to let go if He were to accomplish the will of His Father.

Excerpts taken from Chuck Swindolls book: The Darkness and the Dawn

If you would like to prepare yourself & your family for Easter here are some good readings on the subject.

As always thank you to Ann Voskamp for sharing!


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