Take this Cup

Take This Cup

 

The sweet, deep red wine swirled steadily in the long stemmed glass. The lights glimmered in the liquid casting stars on the surface of the drink.

 

How could a cup so beautiful represent a moment of evil fury? How could the God of the universe deliver his only Son into the dark hands of death represented by this cup?

 

Jeremiah describes a “cup of fury” given by God for the nations, including Israel. “Take from my hand this cup filled with the wine of my wrath,” God tells Jeremiah. (See Jeremiah 25:15.)

 

The translucence of the wine becomes clouded. The swirling stops.

 

This command to Jeremiah from the Almight God leads us to the new Testament words of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsamane. “My Father if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me (Matthew 26:39, NIV).”

 

God chose a beautiful, elegant taste to graphically represent fury and death. To be bitter in the mouth of Christ who in a moment of earthly thinking wished to refuse it.

 

The hand begins the circular motion again. He contemplates placing the up back where it came from. Instead he tilts his head back and drinks it all. It’s bitter when it first touches his tongue, but as he swirls the wine across his taste buds the true sweetness penetrates.

 

The sweetness of life everlasting represented by the very palatable wine contrast with bitter death Christ drank on the cross. Christ, the Son of Man, desired to refuse the cup. But the Son of God drank it all.

 

At the Last Supper Jesus told the disciples, “Take eat; this is my body (Matthew 26:26, KJV).” Then, when he took the cup, he prayed. He gave the cup to each of the disciples saying, “Drink ye all of it (Matthew 26:28, NIV).”

 

Symbolically the disciples drank of all the cup represented. They accepted the blood atonement of Christ shed on the cross for the remission of sin. (See Matthew 26:28.) They joined with him in drinking all of it, even unto death.

 

He passes the wine goblet to the man standing next to him. The first person swirls it profusely contemplating the Giver’s words and deeds. Do they dare follow this man who says drink today and let God’s will be done tomorrow? Slowly the cup travels around the room each person accepting his part in the bitter, sweet drama and its dénouement.

 

Today Jesus still says, “Drink ye all of it” to us, his disciples. Each time we participate in the ordinance of communion, we renew our decision to accept all the cup represents for our lives.

 

Drink ye all of it!

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