Thursday, April 9, 2009

What could move Christ?

Storms didn't do it.
People with the worst diseases didn't cause Him to shrink back.
Demon possession? That would do for me. But Christ? Nope. food and drink for 40 days? No.
Family thinking He's crazy and needing to be put away? Christ stands strong.
Conflict? Ha.
Hatred? Get in line.
People trying to kill Him everywhere He went? Christ just moves along.

So, what could move our Lord? What would make Him want to turn away? A cup.
And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed, saying, "Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done." And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.
Luke 22:41-44

He'd just offered a cup to His disciples hours before. A new cup, a new covenant. Couldn't be that one. There's the cup of blessing Psalm 16 and the cup of salvation in Psalm 116. Christ would not be asking God to remove from Him the cup of blessing. So then, why would a cup be such a bad thing?

Read about the cup God gave His Son to drink...
Thus the LORD, the God of Israel, said to me: "Take from my hand this cup of the wine of wrath, and make all the nations to whom I send you drink it. They shall drink and stagger and be crazed because of the sword that I am sending among them." So I took the cup from the LORD’s hand, and made all the nations to whom the LORD sent me drink it: Jerusalem and the cities of Judah, its kings and officials, to make them a desolation and a waste, a hissing and a curse, as at this day;

And if they refuse to accept the cup from your hand to drink, then you shall say to them, 'Thus says the LORD of hosts: You must drink!
For behold, I begin to work disaster at the city that is called by my name, and shall you go unpunished? You shall not go unpunished, for I am summoning a sword against all the inhabitants of the earth, declares the LORD of hosts.'

"'The LORD will roar from on high,
and from his holy habitation utter his voice;
he will roar mightily against his fold,
and shout, like those who tread grapes,
against all the inhabitants of the earth.

The clamor will resound to the ends of the earth,
for the LORD has an indictment against the nations;
he is entering into judgment with all flesh,
and the wicked he will put to the sword,
declares the LORD.'

Jeremiah 25:15-18, 28-31

The only one who never, never knew the displeasure of God...the one who for more than 30 years devoted Himself to purity of mind, of heart, of purpose...the one who loved...finally one was born who loved the Father with all His heart, soul, mind and strength...that One...the only One who never deserved God's wrath, came to drink and drink deeply from the cup that was mine.

And the prayer worked. Christ rose, steady and steadfast...purposed to drink...sure and ready to receive from the Lord all that wasn't His.

So Jesus said to Peter, "Put your sword into its sheath; shall I not drink the cup that the Father has given me?" John 18:11
And He did. He did all that needed to be done so that He could drink all the wrath that was ours...until the cup was empty.
After this, Jesus, knowing that all was now finished, said (to fulfill the Scripture), "I thirst." A jar full of sour wine stood there, so they put a sponge full of the sour wine on a hyssop branch and held it to his mouth. When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, "It is finished," and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
John 19:28-30
He drank the sour wine. My sour wine. And He's the only One who could do so, for He's the only One who earned the right to die. The precious Lamb of God was dead so that I might live.

Christ chose His cup so that we might choose ours. There are two cups and only two. We must drink from one or we will drink from the other. Take the cup of the new covenant sealed with the blood shed because Christ drank the cup of wrath. Or you will drink the cup of wrath yourself.

There are those who believe that Christ drank all the wrath of God for all people. If that were so, God would have told us about the cup of His wrath only in the Scriptures prior to Christ's death. But that's not true at all. There is more to come. Choose your cup.

If you refuse to say that Christ drank yours...if you refuse the offer of His blood for you...this is what you'll hear...
For in the hand of the LORD there is a cup
with foaming wine, well mixed,
and he pours out from it,
and all the wicked of the earth
shall drain it down to the dregs.
Psalm 75:8
And another angel, a third, followed them, saying with a loud voice, "If anyone worships the beast and its image and receives a mark on his forehead or on his hand, he also will drink the wine of God’s wrath, poured full strength into the cup of his anger, and he will be tormented with fire and sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever, and they have no rest, day or night, these worshipers of the beast and its image, and whoever receives the mark of its name."
Revelation 14:9-11

But if you drink from the cup of the new covenant sealed with the blood of Christ, this is what you'll hear...

Thus says your Lord, the LORD,
your God who pleads the cause of his people:
Behold, I have taken from your hand
the cup of staggering;
the bowl of my wrath you shall drink no more;
Isaiah 51:22
And then because of it, you'll sing a new song...
And they sang a new song, saying,

"Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals,
for you were slain, and by your blood
you ransomed people for God
from every tribe and language and people and nation,
and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God,
and they shall reign on the earth."

Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, "Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!" And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying, "To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!"

Revelation 5:9-13

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