Thursday, January 10, 2013

Did the Father and His Son have two distinct wills?

The vast majority believe that Jesus did have his own distinct will, different from his Father' s.
This appears evident when he went through his trial at the Mount of Olives just before his being crucified.

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 enter 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 thine be done. An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthen him. And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground. Lk.22, 39-44

Notice first that Jesus exhorts his disciples to pray that they not enter temptation. Jesus always puts others ahead of himself except for the few times when he wanted to be alone with his father.

Now this appears to be a  trial  that he perspired to the point of blood falling down to the ground. The intensity of his anguish cannot be underestimated.

If one hears 100 sermons on this passage 99 are going to state that  Jesus' cup  was supped by the Lord, and that Christ in his humanity asked the Father in vain to escape this cup..

Yet this is not true. I have to give credit to Donald Grey Barnhouse who uses the whole of scripture to shed light on this:

 During the days of Jesus' life 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. Heb 5:7

According to Hebrews the "cup" must have been some kind of death. We are not talking about the crucifixion in that he obviously went through that death for his elect.  Perhaps the thought that made him sweat blood was an eternal death that he saw in his humanness as possible. The thought of being separated from his Father from eternity? I am simply guessing here.

To reiterate there was never two wills here. Think about the eternal Godhead having more than one will. Imagine His saying no to His Son in "whom HE was well pleased". Of course it was the Father's will to have this feared cup pass from his Son from eternity. What Jesus wanted Jesus received from the Father. How else could it be?

Anyone who preaches that Christ "sucked it up" and drank the cup is proof texting one verse and is wrong.

The Father and Son could never have two wills. Thanks to the author of Hebrews we know the whole story.


  1. The question of what the prayer is in itself really confusing. If you take him to mean physical death, well "how else would the scriptures be fulfilled" without him dying AND being resurrected? So he, more than anyone else, knew he would be saved in the end. The same question if he's talking about some spiritual death, because he'd have to come back and rule for the scriptures to be fulfilled.

    Maybe it is about the manner in which he was to go. But it's very difficult to say. Jesus was always doing his Father's bidding, that's for sure. And it wasn't coming from lack of faith, for "whatever does not proceed from faith is sin."

  2. Yes Grey Jesus knew what was about to transpire but time is a funny thing with our God. Could he have suffered more than three days the way we count them while he was preaching to the dead? One thing for sure, he wanted something desperately to pass from him and the Father made sure that it was removed.