Christ’s Agony to Christ’s Love
In a great sermon, “Christ’s Agony,” Johnathan Edwards put it like this:
[In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus] had then a near view of that furnace of wrath, into which he was to be cast; he was brought to the mouth of the furnace that he might look into it, and stand and view its raging flames, and see the glowings of its hear, that he might know where he was going and what he was about to suffer… There are two things that render Christ’s love wonderful: 1. That he should be willing to endure sufferings that were so great; and 2. That he should be willing to endure them to make atonement for wickedness that was so great. But in order to its being properly said, Christ of his own act and choice endured sufferings that were so great… [it was] necessary that he should have an extraordinary sense how great these suffering were to be, before he endured them. This was given in his agony.
That love – whose obedience is wide and long and high and deep enough to dissolve a mountain of rightful wrath – is the love you’ve been looking for all your life. No family love, no friend love, no mother love, no spousal love, no romantic love – nothing could possibly satisfy you like that. All those other kinds of loves will let you down; this one never will.
– Taken from Timothy Keller’s book “King’s Cross”