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Poisoned Wine Tempted Jesus but Jesus Knew His Destiny and Overcame His Fear

    Poisoned Wine Tempted Jesus

Poisoned Wine tempted Jesus when He “was led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil” (Matthew 4:1). As a young boy Jesus had developed a driving desire to please the Spirit so Satan had not been able to penetrate His mind. And as He grew older and “all things that should come upon him” (John 18:4) were revealed to Him through unpleasant, disturbing visions of the future, He had pushed Satan aside. But the older He got the more frightening these visions became until, as an adult, they had become too unbearable to ignore, so Jesus went into the wilderness to petition the Spirit for another way to save lost humanity.

Satan had been watching Jesus and sensed this was the turning point in Jesus’ life. The wilderness was just the place to devour his prey. He now had Jesus right where he wanted Him—thirsty, weak, hungry, tired, and alone. This was his chance to insert doubts and lies into Jesus’ mind about His deity. He had fooled other men; why not Jesus.

The Bible says Jesus “was in all points tempted like as we are” (Hebrews 4:15). Satan put misgivings into Jesus’ mind so, as a vulnerable man, He would doubt His divinity. Jesus began to question Himself as He listened to Satan. Were His visions real? Was He God’s flesh? But if His visions were just nightmares, why had He previously been so sure He was God? For a time, Satan’s constant badgering nearly caused Jesus to lose sight of who He was.

    Jesus Knew His Destiny

Jesus knew His destiny because early on, He had studied the Scriptures of old that foretold of His birth and suffering. At twelve years of age, Jesus went to the temple to seek God. When questioned, He answered, “I must be about my Father’s business” (Luke 2:49). Now, in the wilderness He said, “Get thee hence, Satan” (Matthew 4:10). Jesus knew that “all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished. For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spitted on: And they shall scourge him, and put him to death” (Luke 18:31-33-from Isaiah 53). Jesus knew that as God’s flesh He was destined to be crucified.

Jesus said “he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day” (Matthew 16:21). Mark wrote, “For he taught his disciples, and said unto them, The Son of man is delivered into the hands of men, and they shall kill him; and after that he is killed, he shall rise the third day. But they understood not that saying” (Mark 9:31-32). At the Lord’s last supper, Jesus said, “Verily I say unto you, One of you which eateth with me shall betray me” (Mark 14:18). In verse 30, He told Peter that “before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice.” Jesus told His disciples His destiny but they didn’t believe Him.

    Jesus Overcame His Fear

Jesus overcame his fear of the cross. As His betrayal drew near, He said, “Now is my soul troubled” (John 12:27). His soul was “troubled” because He feared crucifixion. Just thinking about it brought goose bumps and a hollow, nauseous pit to the bottom of His stomach. His legs became weak and He broke out in a cold sweat when Pilot handed Him over to the Roman lictors. Their dreaded thongs tore deep, bloody gashes across His back. A carelessly plaited crown of sharp, one-inch piercing thorns was angrily jammed down on His head. Streams of blood gushed out over His back, shoulders, and forehead. Clotting lumps fell to the ground. Globs of spit splattered across His face. People were bewildered because “his visage [face] was so marred [bruised and distorted] . . . and his form [body]” (Isaiah 52:14) more swollen and beaten than any other man. In a reflexive motion, Jesus slid His tongue across His parched lips as if licking blood.

Jesus’ heart pounded as it had done many times before. The deafening frenzy of cheering and shouting grew louder as the mounting hatred of the Jews climaxed with a forward move toward the path that led out of town. Jesus was a strong, young carpenter by trade, but He was too weak to drag His cross to Golgotha. (Many victims died before they were crucified. The purpose of the Roman lictors was to create unbearable pain, but sometimes they erred by ripping into a vital artery that quickly brought death.) As the Roman hammers drove the double-headed 5–7 inch nails into His hands and feet, the pain was excruciating. He had fainting spells as most victims did. But worst of all a cloud of sinful shame descended upon Jesus, bringing loneliness like none He had ever felt. (Excerpt from Poisoned Wine by C J Davidson, Chapter 5, p 115-17)

The night before His Crucifixion, Jesus as flesh pleaded, “O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me” (Matthew 26:39). He was so distressed that “his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground” (Luke 22:44). He didn’t want to suffer the most torturous death known to man. Finally, He put His flesh aside and His fear dissipated. Jesus said, “not my will, but thine, be done” (Luke 22:42).

Jesus overcame His fear when He learned to submit to the will of the Spirit by sacrificing His human will and offering up “prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared; Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered” (Hebrews 5:7-8). Jesus breathed in the fragrant comforting presence of the Spirit.