Gethsem’ane is a Aramaic word that means “oil press”.  While only in John’s account of the Gospel is this place called a “garden”, all four accounts describe Jesus and his disciples going there to pray.  These four accounts give different details, but they all point to a special importance of prayer, with various aspects to that prayer. First is where they pray, in a quiet, isolated location, free from distractions. Luke details for us “as was his custom”, showing that Gethsem’ane was a regular place for Jesus to pray. Second, they are gathered together, praying as a small community of about a dozen people. Third and last, Jesus shows us his humility by praying both on his knees and laying on the ground “on his face”.  These four passages reveal to us a deep insight into the prayer life of Jesus and how he taught his disciples to pray. They also show how Jesus is teaching us today how to pray.

Matthew 26:36 and 39
Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsem’ane, and he said to his disciples, “Sit here, while I go yonder and pray.”
And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed,…

(Mark 14:32-35)
And they went to a place which was called Gethsem’ane; and he said to his disciples, “Sit here, while I pray.” And he took with him Peter and James and John, and began to be greatly distressed and troubled.  And he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch.”  And going a little farther, he fell on the ground and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from him.

Luke 22:39-41
And he came out, and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives; and the disciples followed him.  And when he came to the place he said to them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.”  And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed,

John 18:1-2
When Jesus had spoken these words, he went forth with his disciples across the Kidron valley, where there was a garden, which he and his disciples entered.  Now Judas, who betrayed him, also knew the place; for Jesus often met there with his disciples.

Advertisements