Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” Matthew 26:36[i]
Do you know what the word Gethsemane means? The place where Jesus prayed that the cup would pass from him; the place where he sweat great drops of blood?[ii] Gethsemane comes from two Aramaic words. The word for wine press, and the word for olive oil. Gethsemane means an olive press. The place where the olives are pressed to get olive oil.
Pure olive oil was used in the Tabernacle for the oil lamps which were to burn continually.
Command the Israelites to bring you clear oil of pressed olives for the light so that the lamps may be kept burning. Exodus 27:20
The lamps that never went out are symbols of Jesus, our Light perpetually, faithfully.
When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12
The pure olive oil was also made into the anointing oil used to sanctify, or consecrate, the Tabernacle and the priests.
Then Moses took the anointing oil and anointed the tabernacle and everything in it, and so consecrated them … He poured some of the anointing oil on Aaron’s head and anointed him to consecrate him. Leviticus 8:10, 12
Jesus came to sanctify, consecrate, set apart a “kingdom of priests,” and a Temple in which he can dwell.
For them I sanctify myself, that they too may be truly sanctified. John 17:19
Jesus was pressed there at Gethsemane, the pure olive oil for the Light of the world, for the sanctification of those who would follow Him.
He went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done.” Matthew 26:42
Thank you Lord Jesus for yielding to the press at Gethsemane that you might bring us light and life and freedom from sin. Let us pray for his strength to yield with him to our own press, following him to the cross, that we might be little lights in a very dark world.
Pray for strength to say with Jesus, Father may your will be done.
Image By Gold2874Hans Lie (according to Exif data) – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=24742929
[i] All Bible verses taken from the New International Version of the Bible.
[ii] Luke 22:44