In Garden of Olives, I think of Jesus and God as separate


#1

I know…I fully know, as a lifelong Catholic, that Jesus is God. I know and I believe it, although it can be a headache to try and understand it. But I always come back to that night in the Garden of Olives. Jesus, alone, is tormented by our sins, as well as knowing the awful suffering He would endure. He slips down to the ground, under a tree, hands folded upon a rock, and prays to God. “Father, take this cup from Me. Nevertheless, Your will be done.” It is right here that it would seem that Jesus the Son is begging God the Father not to let Him suffer. It is here that I feel Jesus had no control over what God decided for Him. It is here that I feel Jesus couldn’t have kept Himself from having to suffer, even if He really wanted to, because God the Father had an authority, of sorts, over Him. While they are one and the same, here it really does seem as though they are separate, the Father having more authority than the Son.
Then I think of it another way, also. Another way to look at this is myself.
I am one person, mind, body, and soul, three in one.
I am one person, yet can be of two minds about something. An example would be…
I really shouldn’t have that piece of chocolate…one part of me is saying…
Oh, but I really want it! Another part of me is saying…
I, as one person, will have to make the decision, and I decide *not *to have that piece of chocolate for my own good, despite that the other part of me still really wants it.
Is this how it was with Jesus, in a sense, in the Garden? Of course, far more serious, but with Him, could He have *not *suffered had he willed not to? Or was God truly in authority over Him?
And maybe no one really knows the answer to this, but I just thought it made for an interesting thought.


#2

The Garden is the prime Scriptural basis for the dogma of Jesus’ two wills, one human and one divine (the heretical counterproposal being Monothelitism, condemned at the Sixth Ecumenical Council (Constantinople III)).

Of course with Jesus being a single Person, it would have been impossible for the human will to override the divine will; the two wills would have been in complete harmony. But it does explain why Jesus’ human will can be contrasted from the divine will, but as we see, his human will was completely “in sync” with the divine.


#3

Great explanation :thumbsup:


#4

St. Cyril (via the Catena Aurea) sheds some light on this:

He did not betake Himself to prayer, as if He was in want of another’s help–He who is the Almighty power of the Father–but that we may learn not to slumber in temptation, but rather to be instant in prayer.

Robert Witham (via Haydock) writes:

Though, as God, he could prevent and hinder these passions and affections natural to man, yet he could also permit them to affect his human nature; as he permitted himself to be seized with hunger, after fasting forty days; and so he permitted his human nature to be seized with fear and grief in this garden of Gethsemani…what happened to Christ as man, were ordained as instructions for us.

To me this is the most mysterious part. As God He has the same divine intellect and will as the Father, so there can be no hierarchy of wills, let alone opposition. As man, however, He is indeed subordinate to the Father. Does it follow that Christ as man is subordinate to Christ as God? I wouldn’t affirm such a statement, because it seems to imply a separation between His two natures; there is only one Person. But I think we can say that His human will is subordinate to His divine.


#5

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