Watch With Me: Conclusion
After spending 40 days in Gethsemane, can we say we have come away with a greater sense of the wonder of that night and amazement at the Savior who looked into that heinous cup and drank it all for us? Have we now a better sense of the horror of our sin, the cost paid for it? Have we been convinced of the need to watch and pray and keep our eyes on Him?
Spurgeon tells us, “Brethren, we cannot expect to know the length and breadth and height of these things, but as our own experience deepens and darkens we shall know more and more of what Christ suffered in the garden.” So it may not merely be at the end of this 40 days that Gethsemane becomes clear. Perhaps for some of us it is only Jesus awakening us the first time, and we are wiping our bleary eyes to see Him a bit in the dimness of the night. Maybe it will be as it was with the disciples that they understood more clearly when they looked back with the Holy Spirit’s illumination. Or possibly these lessons of the Garden will come into sharper focus when we face our own Gethsemanes of surrender to the sovereign will of the Father.
Perhaps someday the meaning and lessons of Gethsemane may become beautifully clear for us, both as we see our sin more clearly, as well as the loveliness of the One who bore them away from us. As Spurgeon says, “How black I am, how filthy, how loathsome in the sight of God. I feel myself only fit to be cast into the lowest hell, and I wonder that God has not long ago cast me there; but I go to Gethsemane, and I peer under those gnarled olive trees, and I see my Savior. Yes, I see Him wallowing on the ground in anguish, and hear such groans come from Him as never came from [the] human breast before. I look upon the earth and see it red with His blood, while His face is smeared with gory sweat, and I say to myself, ‘My God, my Savior, what aileth thee?’ I hear Him reply, ‘I am suffering for thy sin; and then I take comfort, for while I fain would have spared my Lord such anguish, now that the anguish is over I can understand how Jehovah can spare me, because He smote His Son in my stead.” Seeing the darkness of our own sin is not meant to cause us despondency, but gratitude and wonder that one so unworthy has been so mercifully and graciously saved.
Gethsemane deserves our continued attention in order that the wonder of it will take hold of our hearts, deepen our worship, inspire our prayers and watching, and drive us deeply into the full will of the Father. It speaks poignantly of Jesus’ humanity and agony. It shows us how altogether lovely He is in His obedience and humility. It exemplifies the glories of doing the Father’s will at any cost. It teaches us how essential prayer and watchfulness are to having victory in obedience. All of these things require that we come here frequently to gaze and to ponder, to watch with Him…and to pray that we will be given insight into something so beyond what our minds can take in on their own.
by Sheri Cook, Director of Special Ministries