Matthew 26: 39. “And He went a little farther, and fell on His face, and prayed, saying, O My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me: nevertheless not as I will, but as Thou wilt.”
The anguish expressed in these words is beyond my understanding.
Had Jesus changed His mind? Was He no longer willing to go to Calvary? Was He so fearful of the physical torture that was coming that He was begging to be released from His mission?
Absolutely, positively not.
His anguish was not for the physical torment; of course, He must have dreaded it just as any other man would have dreaded it. But that dread was not what He was addressing in His plea to the Father to have this cup pass from Him.
I believe that His soul was sorrowful unto death, His anguish so wrenching that He sweat great drops of blood in His agony, because what He dreaded the most was the moment that God, Who could not look on sin, would turn His face away from His only begotten, dearly beloved Son. I believe that He was asking God that somehow, if it were at all possible, He would not turn His face away as Jesus hung there between heaven and earth, bearing the weight of the sin of all mankind, becoming sin for us, Who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him (II Cor. 5:21).
Can I prove it? No. But the fact is, Jesus never hesitated to fulfill His role as the perfect Lamb of God. He only dreaded with all His being the time when fellowship between Himself and the Father would be broken.
He didn’t just die for our sin. He became sin, in all its ugliness and horror.
How desolate that must have been for the sinless Savior.