God bless you in the delightful name of Jesus Christ, the teacher come from God (John 3:2).
At times we all face what has been called nevertheless moments. These are times when we are faced with the truth and must decide if we are going to do it. Sometimes our will and God’s will do not always acquiesce. At those times the decisions we make and the prayers we pray are so essential. They can change the very trajectory of our lives and the lives of those we love.
In Matthew 26:39, we find Jesus at one of the most critically important moments in His life. Temptation was weighing heavily upon Him. He felt the conflict as his flesh warred against His spirit. The agony that Jesus went through at that moment in the Garden of Gethsemane caused Him to cry out to His Father for help. Jesus prayed with great earnestness.
And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me…
Jesus knew from the Old Testament scriptures what laid before him. He didn’t want to endure the suffering that was ahead. So, he asked if there were any way to avoid it. The “O” shows how earnest he was in prayer. He was very emotionally invested. Jesus had come head first into one of the great nevertheless moments of his life. What if Jesus yielded to His own desire that night? Satan would have certainly won. The virgin birth, the baptism, the miracles, the teachings, everything would have been for nothing! However, the prayer that began in the beginning of verse 39 was qualified before it was completed. It was qualified by the realization that although he did not want to endure what laid ahead, he was willing to do so because he knew it was the will of his Father.
… nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.
Praise be to God for that one word that changed everything: nevertheless. “Nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.” Precisely at that moment in time, Jesus stood at the crossroads of eternity and held not only his own destiny, but the destiny of all humanity in his hands. Jesus through honest, fervent prayer completely yielded his will, his desires, and his flesh to the will of his Father. It was a nevertheless moment. After the prayer Jesus was resolute. His resolve was evident in his response to Peter in John 18:11 when the soldiers came to take him.
Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?
Paul similarly faced a decision toward the end of his life. He wanted to depart and be with Christ, but he knew what was best for the believers. Therefore, he, too, facing a nevertheless moment resigned his will to the will of God. He would continue to believe to live and be released from prison so he could once again minister as a free man to God’s people.
For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better: 24 Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you.
Let’s be sure that our prayers do not seek the easy way out. Let’s look and follow the examples of our Savior and Paul. When we encounter nevertheless moments, may we recognize them and submit to the will of our loving, heavenly Father. His will is always good, acceptable, and perfect, and we can never go wrong when we do as He says.
“Nevertheless” is one word that appeared many times in major turning points throughout the Word of God. It has stood center stage throughout the course of human history at very crucial times. When we happen upon similar momentous occasions, let us make the right choice ― the Word and will of God will never fail us.