“And they offered Him wine mixed with myrrh, but He did not take it.”
~ Mark 15:23
“A golden truth is couched in the fact that the Savior refused the myrrhed wine-cup from His lips. On the heights of heaven the Son of God stood of old, and as He looked down upon our globe He measured the long descent to the utmost depths of human misery; He cast up the sum total of all the agonies which expiation would require, and abated not a jot. He solemnly determined that to offer a sufficient atoning sacrifice, He must go the whole way, from the highest to the lowest, from the throne of highest glory to the cross of deepest woe. This myrrhed cup, with its sedative influence, would have stopped Him within a little of the utmost limit of misery, therefore He refused it. He would not stop short of all He had undertaken to suffer for His people!
Ah, how many of us have pined after reliefs to our grief—which would have been injurious to us! Reader, did you never pray for a discharge from hard service or suffering with a petulant and willful eagerness? Providence has taken from you the desire of your eyes with a stroke. Christian, did you say, ‘May Your will be done’? Oh, it is sweet to be able to say, ‘My Lord, if for other reasons I need not suffer—yet if I can honor You more by suffering, and if the loss of my earthly all will bring You glory, then so let it be. I refuse the comfort, if it comes in the way of Your honor.’ O that we thus walked more in the footsteps of our Lord, cheerfully enduring trial for His sake, promptly and willingly putting away the thought of self and comfort when it would interfere with our finishing the work which He has given us to do. Great grace is needed—but great grace is provided!”
~ Charles Spurgeon
Consider…the physical pain which our Savior experienced was minute compared to the pain of bearing our sin and receiving the full brunt of God’s wrath in our place. Believers, in Christ we are no longer condemned…we are set free from sin to serve and follow Him.
“Then Jesus told His disciples, ‘If anyone would come after me, let Him deny Himself and take up His cross and follow me.
For whoever would save His life will lose it, but whoever loses His life for my sake will find it.'”
~ Matthew 16:24-25
As Spurgeon pointed out…great grace is needed to follow Christ…and great grace is provided. On the cross He won the full and complete victory over our sin. He saves us. He gives us the grace to follow Him. And He grants eternal life. All a work of Him. He loved us first, and we love Him and follow Him in return. By His grace and strength, and by His transforming work in our lives can we learn to cry out, “Your will be done. Lord, make me more like Jesus, whatever it may take.” The path is not easy, but remember…He has already won the victory, and He promises that His grace is sufficient.
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose.
For those whom He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, in order that He might be the firstborn among many brothers.
And those whom He predestined He also called, and those whom He called He also justified, and those whom He justified He also glorified.
What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
He who did not spare his own Son but gave Him up for us all, how will he not also with Him graciously give us all things?
Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies.
Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died-more than that, who was raised-who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?
As it is written, ‘For Your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.’
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers,
nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
~ Romans 8:28-39
“But He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
~ 2 Corinthians 12:9-10