How Jesus Did It
It is difficult to imagine the degree of intense pressure Jesus must have been under the night He was betrayed and arrested. Knowing full well what awaited Him the next day, He was nevertheless able to face the rejection, mockery, beatings, scourging, and crucifixion—for us.
It would probably be a mistake to attribute His strength solely to the fact that He was, after all, the Son of God.
In the days of His flesh, He offered up both prayers and supplications with loud crying and tears to the One able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His piety. Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered (Hebrews 5:7-8 NASB, emphasis added).
Though God’s Son, He was also fully human: “In the days of His flesh . . . .” He too, like us, had to learn obedience through suffering. All this means that we can use His experience as a powerful example for us to follow whenever we undergo severe hardship.
So how did He endure? At least three factors played a part in strengthening Jesus during the absolutely worst experience anyone could ever know.
1) He turned to His friends. In the upper room on the night of His arrest He told His disciples, “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer . . .” (Luke 22:15, emphasis added). Shortly after in the Garden of Gethsemane He pled with Peter, James, and John, “My soul is deeply grieved, to the point of death; remain here and keep watch with Me” (Matthew 26:38, emphasis added).
2) He turned to His God. Friends are not always dependable. When He predicted that His disciples would flee at the time of His arrest, He added, “and yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me” (John 16:32, emphasis added).
3) He turned to His hope. “. . . looking unto Jesus . . . who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross . . .” (Hebrews 12:2 KJV). This passage was specifically written to motivate believers to follow Jesus’ example of endurance as they too faced opposition for their faith.
What does the future hold? Only God knows. But whatever comes “we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us” (Romans 8:37 NASB).
And that’s a promise!