Sweat Drops of Blood

As Jesus prayed in the garden, the Scriptures state Luke 22:44  And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground. This medical phenomenon is called hematidrosis, a condition in which the capillaries that serve the sweat glands rupture and the sweat glands produce a bloody mixture of sweat and blood. It is said that this condition is associated with deep emotional trauma including great depression or great fear.

As I read about this in Scripture before retiring one night, I asked the  Lord to help me understand this scene of His prayer in the Garden. During the night, I attempted to meditate on Christ kneeling and praying until these “as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.” It was difficult for me to even think in such a fashion, so later I checked on this so-called condition in research. One case was of a man who had stains on his abdomen area. The doctors noticed the man was very depressed and consequently the only treatment the man received was counseling for depression.  This made me meditate on the condition of Christ as He prayed. Was the agony extreme depression? Was the agony extreme fear?  The word agony indicates a great struggle—a tug or war if you please. What did this struggle represent—fear, depression, struggle?  It is possible that it included all of these, but in my thoughts the confrontation of Christ with sin must have been a great part of the agony. He would shortly be “made sin for us.” 2 Corinthians 5:21  For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. Imagine with me, Jesus, the God man, is has never sinned. In fact, he is too holy to even look upon sin. Habakkuk 1:13  Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity: wherefore lookest thou upon them that deal treacherously, and holdest thy tongue when the wicked devoureth the man that is more righteous than he?  The darkness and wickedness of sin was abhorrent to the very nature of the divine Son of God. He recoiled in great fear, depression, and struggle at  the very thought of sin. Now we all know that Christ willingly laid down his life for our sin, but we also know how terribly serious it must have been for Him to become sin for us, He who knew no sin. (II Cor. 5:21)

There could have been no greater dread in his heart for one so holy to succumb and submit to the Father’s will in this matter of sin. It was such a horrible thing to him that he sweat as it were great drops of blood. With stains on his forehead and face and with bloody matted hair and beard he prayed. “Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.” (Luke 22:42) Immediately, an angel strengthened Him (vs. 43) Oh, how much the Father desires to strengthen each of us as He did His own Son in this matter of sin! Sin is so horrible that the full wrath of God which we humanly know very little about is poured out against it.

Would to God, we recoiled at sin and its consequences as did Jesus! Is sin serious to me? Is sin serious to you? Has it caused any agony of soul? Has it caused any great fear? Has it caused any great depression? Oh, Lord help us to see sin as you see it.  It separates us from God, which is the greatest calamity of all. As the Creator said to Cain, If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. …”(Genesis 4:7 )