“Now my soul is troubled. And what should I say—‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it is for this reason that I have come to this hour. Father, glorify your name.” Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.” The crowd standing there heard it and said that it was thunder. Others said, “An angel has spoken to him.” Jesus answered, “This voice has come for your sake, not for mine.
“What Shall I Say?”
When temptation stares us in the face we often wonder what to say! Even Jesus, after his triumphal entry into Jerusalem, facing certain arrest and death, seemed to be tempted to ask God to save him. Yet He remembered His purpose in coming to earth, was guided by it, and knew what to say. He did not ask God to save him from the painful days ahead.
Remembering my purpose in living a loving, disciplined, Christ-centered life can help me resist temptations to make easy self-centered actions, and especially careless speech. It’s remembering that is hard! Yet so much easier than what Jesus had to do.
Lots of conversation was going on in this passage—between Jesus, his disciples, God, and the crowd, some of whom thought God’s voice was an angel---or thunder! How like us, when we wonder whether what we hear is divine---or not! I know God speaks to me through other people, friend and foe, but I have a hard time discerning the message. So when this passage concludes with Jesus saying, “This voice has come for your sake, not for mine,” it tells me that attention must be paid to all voices, keeping in mind the source, the purpose and the amount of love involved. Then, hopefully, I will know what to say.
Prayer: Gracious God, as we journey to the cross this week, make us mindful of Jesus’ obedience to your purpose for Him. Help us listen for your Voice in order that we might know your purpose for us as we live our lives in these difficult times. Forgive us when we fail, and surround us with your Grace. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.