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Students sitting outside Bockman
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Saturday, September 07, 2019

Next Day

1 Go to dark Gethsemane,
all who feel the tempter's pow'r;
your Redeemer's conflict see.
Watch with him one bitter hour;
turn not from his griefs away;
learn from Jesus Christ to pray.

2 Follow to the judgment hall,
view the Lord of life arraigned;
oh, the wormwood and the gall!
Oh, the pangs his soul sustained!
Shun not suff'ring, shame, or loss;
learn from him to bear the cross.

3 Calv'ry's mournful mountain climb;
there, adoring at his feet,
mark that miracle of time,
God's own sacrifice complete.
"It is finished!" hear him cry;
learn from Jesus Christ to die.

4 Early hasten to the tomb,
where they laid his breathless clay;
all is solitude and gloom.
Who has taken him away?
Christ is ris'n! He meets our eyes.
Savior, teach us so to rise.

Text: James Montgomery, 1771-1854

It is remarkable for me to remember that the great story of creation and redemption doesn't begin and end in the halls of power or on a battlefield with kings and troops. Instead, it begins and ends in a garden. A garden was the scene of our first rebellion, when we refused to take care of the world that God created, but wanted to rule and order it ourselves. In a garden, our Lord Jesus showed us how to pray, "Not my will, but yours be done." And finally, in a garden, Mary frantically looked for the body of her Lord and found him -- not dead, but risen and triumphant! It's fitting that Mary mistook Jesus for the gardener, because he is the gardener of all creation, and from all these gardens we learn about sin, the cross, and the resurrection.

O God, great gardener of our souls, nurture and water us in this life, until that day when we bear a harvest of righteousness for your kingdom. Amen.

Kristofer Coffman, '16
Graduate Fellow in Classical and Near Eastern Studies
University of Minnesota, Minneapolis

This God Pause daily devotion is brought to you by the alumni of Luther Seminary.