Monday, December 07, 2015

Did Jesus really sweat drops of blood? - Sunday - The Daily Diary of a Bible Blogger

Q. The New Testament says Jesus sweat drops of blood when he was praying in the Garden of Gethsemane or is that just a figure of speech?

 Many skeptics just think that this is a figure of speech. But let's read the story of Lee Strobel who found out otherwise!

"I was a sceptic once but then I started my research for The Case for Christ. I went to California to interview Dr. Alexander Metherell, a physician, research scientist, and expert on the crucifixion of Jesus.

“This is a known medical condition called hematidrosis. It’s not very common, but it is associated with a high degree of psychological stress,” he told me.

“What happens is that severe anxiety causes the release of chemicals that break down the capillaries in the sweat glands. As a result, there’s a small amount of bleeding into these glands, and the sweat comes out tinged with blood. We’re not talking about a lot of blood; it’s just a very, very small amount.”

Interestingly, it was Luke, a physician, who noted this phenomenon. He said of Jesus in 
Luke 22:44: “And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.”

Jesus’ anguish and passionate prayers over his impending torture and death could certainly have been enough to trigger this medical phenomenon. The Journal of Medicine analyzed seventy-six cases of hematidrosis and concluded that the most common causes were acute fear and intense mental contemplation.

I asked Dr. Metherell what affect this bloody sweat would have had on Jesus. “What this did,” he replied, “was to set up the skin to be extremely fragile so that when Jesus was flogged by the Roman soldier the next day, his skin would have been very, very sensitive.”

What could have prompted Jesus to willingly endure the misery of Gethsemane, the brutality of the flogging, and the unspeakable torment of the cross?

“Well,” said Dr. Metherell, “I suppose the answer can be summed up in one word – and that would be love.”

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” – 
Romans 5:8


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