From Heaven With Love


The Terrible Temptation

Christ was now standing in a different attitude from that in which He had ever stood before. As the substitute for man, Christ was suffering under divine justice. Hitherto He had been an intercessor for others; now He longed to have an intercessor for Himself. HLv 458.1

As Christ felt His unity with the Father broken up, He feared that in His human nature He would be unable to endure the conflict. The tempter had come for the last fearful struggle; if he failed here, the kingdom of the world would finally become Christ's and he himself would be overthrown. But if Christ could be overcome, the earth would become Satan's kingdom, and the human race would be forever in his power. HLv 458.2

Satan told Christ that if He became the surety for a sinful world, He would be identified with Satan's kingdom and nevermore be one with God. And what was to be gained by this sacrifice? Satan pressed the situation on the Redeemer: The people who claim to be above all others in spiritual advantages are seeking to destroy You. One of Your own disciples will betray You. One of Your most zealous followers will deny You. All will forsake You. That those whom He loved so much should unite in the plots of Satan, pierced Christ's soul. The conflict was terrible. The sins of men weighed heavily on Christ, and the sense of God's wrath against sin was crushing out His life. HLv 458.3

In His agony He clung to the cold ground, as if to prevent Himself from being drawn farther from God. From His pale lips came the bitter cry, “O My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me.” Yet even now He added, “Nevertheless not as I will, but as Thou wilt.” HLv 458.4