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And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground. (Luke 22:44 )

The other gospel writers don't mention the physical effects of Jesus' night in the Garden, that He had "great drops of blood" fall from his brow to the ground, but Luke did. A detail a doctor was likely to notice.

Throughout history, there have been reported cases of hematidrosis, a bloody sweat that emits from the forehead of a person under extreme emotional stress. When the tiny blood vessels of the forehead rupture from the stress, it combines with sweat and forms the bloody sweat.

The stress would have to be intense for hematidrosis to occur. A stress like facing death.

But Dr. Luke does not report a bloody sweat dripping from Jesus' brow, he says there were "great drops of blood." The blood was already coagulated. The Greek word Luke used that is translated "great drops" can also be translated clots. The stress Jesus experienced was so great, that his tiny blood vessels didn't just rupture and form a bloody sweat, rather, blood clots fell from his brow on the ground.

What kind of stress would result in blood clots falling from His forehead to the ground? The stress of facing death on the cross and taking on the sin of the world.

Soon, the Roman Soldiers would thrust a crown of thorns upon His head, beat Him with a cat-of-nine-tails and thrust spikes through His hands and feet, and He would bleed again. But those wounds would be inflicted from without. 

At Gethsemane, His wounds came from within. The stress was so great, He bled "great drops of blood."

We will never know what He experienced to pay for our sin. Not at the cross, and not in the Garden. We will never know because we don't have to. We don't have to, because He did.

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