GETHSEMANE [THE SORROWING]
THE BLOOD WALK #1
Scripture: For he was in such agony of spirit that he broke into a sweat of blood, with great drops falling to the ground as he prayed more and more earnestly. The Living Bible (TLB)
Observations: Hematidrosis, also called blood sweat, is a very rare condition in which a human sweats blood. The term is from Greek haima and αἷμα, meaning blood and sweat. I call this study the way of suffering or ‘the blood way’ which started in Gethsemane! He prayed more fervently, and he was in such agony of spirit that his sweat fell to the ground like great drops of blood. Luke 22:44 The medical term for this is: Hematidrosis! It is a rare condition in which a human being sweats blood. Leonardo Da Vinci described a soldier who sweated blood before battle. Jesus Christ experienced hematidrosis while praying in the garden of Gethsemane before his crucifixion as mentioned in the Bible by Physician Luke as “and being in anguish he prayed more earnestly and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.”
We cannot imagine what Jesus went through in those dark hours where He prayed ‘Father if this cup of suffering can be removed then please do it, but nevertheless not my will but yours be done’. This is what Alexander Metherell, M.D., PH.D. has to say about Jesus in Gethsemane: ‘Jesus prayed all night and now during that process He was anticipating the coming events of the next day. Since He already knew the amount of suffering He was going to have to endure, He was quite naturally experiencing a great deal of psychological distress. So much so that blood mingled with His sweat. It is not a common condition, but it is associated with a high degree of psychological stress. He goes on: What happens is that severe anxiety causes the release of chemicals that break down the capillaries in the sweat glands. As a result, there’s a small amount of bleeding into these glands, and sweat comes out tinged with blood. We’re not talking about a lot of blood; it’s a small amount but nevertheless noticeable. This would affect the epidermis and make it very fragile so that when Jesus was scourged by the Roman guards His skin would be very very sensitive. [Excerpt from A CASE FOR EASTER. Lee Strobell]
Application: It is noticeable that Jesus’s blood flowed in a time of anxiety, torment of soul, whilst in psychological distress. We know that the blood of Jesus heals and cleanses us and has power over all the work of the devil! So Jesus had to shed His blood whilst in anguish of mind and soul so that through His blood we too could experience freedom and liberty from distress and anxiety of soul if we so choose to let Him cleanse us and heal us. His blood is powerful enough to overcome mental, psychological and demonized minds. We only have to look at the demon possessed man of Gadara! One of the biggest illnesses today and one which puts a massive strain on the NHS is mental problems! Anxiety, stress, worry and depression to name a few. But Jesus shed His blood for our anguished and worried minds. Listen to these words of Paul:
Don’t be pulled in different directions or worried about a thing. Be saturated in prayer throughout each day, offering your faith-filled requests before God with overflowing gratitude. Tell him every detail of your life, then God’s wonderful peace that transcends human understanding, will make the answers known to you through Jesus Christ. The Passion Translation (TPT) [a]
Footnotes: Philippians 4:7 As translated from the Aramaic. The Greek is “guard your heart and your mind in Christ Jesus.”
There in the garden of tears My heavy load he chose to bear His heart with sorrow was torn ‘Yet not My will but Yours,’ He said [The Servant King. Graham Kendrick].
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I thank you that Jesus had to endure anguish and psychological distress so that I may be free from it if I so choose to believe and apply the blood prayerfully to my life. So I choose to believe and thank you that we defeat the devil through the blood of Jesus Christ and the testimony of our declaring it. Amen.