April 5th, 2021

the way to Canaan is through the wilderness

It is 10:36 AM Monday morning here in West Michigan. Right now it is thundering and lightning outside. We needed the rain.

Carol took Ollie our son's dog for a walk. Caleb was suppose to pick up Ollie this morning, but he never showed up.

I got up this morning around 6:45 AM because Carol was leaving to have a meal with someone. I got up and made a fresh pot of coffee. Carol left and I drank coffee while messing with our main computer.

I spent the morning mainly reading from a book titled, 'Looking Unto Jesus' by Isaac Ambrose. Now I am writing in my online diaries. I have nothing to do today that will stop the COVID-19 world wide plague. We are all doomed to die of a plague or some other divine judgment.

Last night Carol went to bed early and I stayed reading from a book titled, 'Diary of Andres Fava' by Julio Cortazar Translated from the Spanish by Anne McLean. Also read yesterday from a book titled, 'Life Embitters' by Josep Pla Translated from the Catalan by Peter Bush.

Do not know what else to report so I will close to drift into the afternoon hours. There is no way of escape from the death flow. Might as well kiss it all good-bye.

"[30] And when they had sung an hymn, they went out into the mount of Olives.
[31] Then saith Jesus unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad.
[32] But after I am risen again, I will go before you into Galilee.
[33] Peter answered and said unto him, Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended.
[34] Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.
[35] Peter said unto him, Though I should die with thee, yet will I not deny thee. Likewise also said all the disciples.
[36] Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder.
[37] And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy.
[38] Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me.
[39] And he went a little further, 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.
[40] And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour?
[41] Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.
[42] He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done.
[43] And he came and found them asleep again: for their eyes were heavy.
[44] And he left them, and went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words.
[45] Then cometh he to his disciples, and saith unto them, Sleep on now, and take your rest: behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of man is betrayed into the hands of sinners.
[46] Rise, let us be going: behold, he is at hand that doth betray me." Matthew 26:30-46

"Being in an agony."—Luke xxii. 44.

My soul, art thou still in Gethsemane? Look at Jesus once more; behold him in his agony; view him in his bloody sweat, in a night of cold, and in the open air, when we are told the servants, in the high priest's hall, were obliged to make a fire of coals to warm themselves. In such a night was thy Jesus, from the extremity of anguish in his soul, by reason of thy sins, made to sweat great drops of blood. Look at the Lord in this situation; and as the prophet, by vision, beheld him coming up with his dyed garments, as one that had trodden the wine fat; so do thou, by faith, behold him in his bloody sweat; when, from treading the winepress of the wrath of God, under the heavy load of the world's guilt, his whole raiment was stained with blood. Sin first made man to sweat: and Jesus, though he knew no sin, yet taking out the curse of it for his people, is made to sweat blood. Oh thou meek and holy Lamb of God! methinks, I would, day by day, attend the garden of Gethsemane by faith, and contemplate thee in thine agony. But who shall unfold it to my wondering eyes, or explain all its vast concern to my astonished soul! The evangelists, by their different turns of expression to point it out, plainly shew, that nothing within the compass of language can unfold it. Matthew saith, the soul of Jesus was "exceeding sorrowful, even unto death. "Matt. xxvi. 38. The sorrows of hell, as is elsewhere mentioned, encompassed him. Ps. xviii. 5. My soul, pause over this. Was Jesus's soul thus sorrowful, even with hell sorrows, when, from the sins of his people charged on him, and the penalty exacted from him as the sinner's surety, the wrath of God against sin, lighting upon him, came as the tremendous vengeance of hell? Mark describes the state of the Lamb of God as "sore amazed." The expression signifies the horror of mind; such a degree of fear and consternation as when the hairs of the head stand upright, through the dread of the mind. And was Jesus thus agonized, and for sins his holy soul had never committed, when standing forth as the surety of others? John's expression of the Redeemer's state on this occasion is, that he said," his soul was troubled." John xii. 27. The original of this word troubled, is the same as the Latins derive their word for hell from. As if the Lord Jesus felt what the prophet had said concerning everlasting burnings. Isa. xxxiii. 14. "My heart," said that patient sufferer, "is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels." Ps. xxii. 14. Hence Moses, and after him Paul, in the view of God's taking vengeance on sin, describe him under that awful account—"our God is a consuming fire" Deut. iv. 24. Heb. xii. 29. Beholding his Father thus coming forth to punish sin in his person, Jesus said—"Mine iniquities have taken hold upon me, therefore my heart faileth me," Ps. xl. 12. And Luke folds up the account of Jesus with "being in an agony;" such a labouring of nature as implies an universal convulsion, as dying men with cold clammy sweats: so Jesus, scorched with the hot wrath of God on sin, sweated, in his agony, clots of blood! My soul, canst thou hold out any longer? Will not thine eye-strings and heart-strings break, thus to look on Jesus in his agony! Oh precious Jesus! were the great objects of insensible, inanimated nature, made to feel as if to take part in thy sufferings; and am I unmoved? Did the very grave yawn at thy death and resurrection; and were the rocks rent, while my tearless eyes thus behold thee? Oh gracious God, fulfil that promise by the prophet," that I may look on him whom I have pierced, and mourn as one that mourneth for his only son, and be in bitterness as one that is in bitterness for his first-born."
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