Some people do not understand why Christians around the world are grateful for Jesus and what He did on the cross. They do not understand the power of the blood of Jesus. It is interesting that there are seven streams of blood that flowed from the passion of Jesus Christ during his suffering and death on the cross. The number seven stands for completeness or perfection. His blood is completely able to redeem and restore broken and fallen humanity. The seven streams of blood prove that.
The first stream of blood came from his time in the Garden of Gethsemane. It was in that garden he struggled, fought, and won His biggest battle over “the will of God.” He set a wonderful example for us…Jesus showed us how to conquer the will.
“Jesus went out as usual to the Mount of Olives, and his disciples followed him. On reaching the place, he said to them, “Pray that you will not fall into temptation.” He withdrew about a stone’s throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him. And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.”
One of the greatest battles that any man or woman ever faces is the battle conquer one’s own will. I know that my greatest struggles haven’t really come from those on the outside. It is Bob that I have the most difficulty with. He wants his way. Are you the same? Or has the blood of Jesus assisted you in conquering your will?
It is your will that leads you into areas of sin. It is your will that says, I want what I want. It is your will that says, I want to be God in my life. I want to do what I want to do and I don’t want to listen to God or my parents or anybody else. In fact, conquering one’s will is one of the greatest areas of struggle for believers.
Our will is strong. Our will makes us disobedient. Our will makes us defiant. Certainly when we channel our will in the right direction it is a wonderful thing. But it is also a sign that we are descended from Adam. Mankind is fallen.
You can see it even in a little baby. I will never forget my oldest son Dustin when he was just a little guy. My sister and her husband had some glass candles out on their coffee table. And Dustin knew the meaning of the word,”No!” He was just a little guy, and he would go to touch those candles. And we would tell him, No! and he would get so upset. He would fall on the floor and cry. However, his will was strong! I will never forget that little guy…he was persistent… he wanted his way… I remember him pretending to look the other way…just sticking one little finger out there to touch that candle. He just wanted it. The power of the human will!
You see, the greatest battle you will ever face in your spiritual life is to conquer that will.
Can the blood of Jesus help us to do that?
I believe it can because our struggle is the same battle that Jesus fought in the Garden of Gethsemane.
The battle in Gethsemane was not over the fear of death. Jesus was not afraid of dying. Jesus said in John 10:17,18 “The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life–only to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.” Jesus wasn’t afraid of dying. He laid his life down, and he knew he had the authority to take it up again! But you see Jesus was fully human. And as Mary’s Son, he had inherited a will that needed to be conquered and submitted to his Heavenly Father. That is why he had to pray, not my will but your will be done. He conquered the human will. He taught his will to obey through submission to God and prayer.
The writer to the Hebrews put it like this:
Hebrews 5:7-9 “During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him.”
Jesus conquered the human will. You may be thinking -What does that mean for me? Jesus modeled for us how to conquer the human will. What you need is to be connected to one who already fought the battle ahead of you. Jesus conquered the will. He prayed until his will was submitted to the father. It was an intense battle in his mind. As we give our lives to Christ, and are cleansed by the blood of Jesus, God renews our mind.
If you will live in relationship with Christ. If you are connected to him like a vine to a branch you will win the battle over your will. Jesus was one with the Father. He lived a life that modeled spiritual disciplines of prayer, fasting, solitude. He was connected to God. He knew he needed His Fathers strength to overcome. Jesus did it through prayer, instinctively he went to the garden to pray. He got down on his knees and cried out! Not my will, but yours! That is how you win the battle. Just like Jesus did.
Someone said, I wish I could stop cussing. I wish I could stop doing drugs. I wish I could stop telling lies. I wish I could stop sinning sexually. I wish I could just put my will under. In and of ourselves we can’t do this. We need the blood of Jesus to cleanse us.
Well, let me tell you how.
- Come into a relationship with Jesus. You must be connected to him. You must have Him as your Savior.
- Have a real prayer life with God.
Take time to pray. Pray about your weaknesses. Ask others to pray…Jesus did in the garden. Don’t keep your weakness a secret. Tell others. Live in community with them. Ask God to give you the strength to overcome. Pray Jesus prayer, not my will but your will be done.
It may sound old fashioned. I believe that just like Jesus conquered his will in prayer. You can too. I want you to remember this… when you think of Jesus and how he prayed in the garden, until sweat drops of blood feel from his brow, you will remember that he has given you power to submit your will to his.
Paul struggled with sin. Romans 7:24,25 he says these marvelous words. “What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God–through Jesus Christ our Lord!” It is through appropriating Christ victory in the garden by the blood of Jesus, we find we can submit our will to His!