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 Sheila's Reflections

“In The Cup”

March 2008

And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt. – Matthew 26:39
He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done. - Matthew 26:42

It was 1975 when I heard the message entitled, “In the Cup”, and the results of hearing it engraved a picture on my heart, like nothing before, of the price Jesus paid for my sin. The cost to Him personally took on a reality I’d never experienced before and is still as fresh today, as it was back then. 

As the message unfolded I could imagine the scenes quickly appearing before Christ’s eyes like a movie reel, as He peered in the “Cup” He was soon to drink from. Just knowing He saw every agonizing step of His journey to the cross and was still willing to drink from “His Cup”, so that mankind could be saved, humbles me to this day. Please journey along beside me and view the scenes that unfolded before Him. 

Scene One opens up with a kiss of betrayal from one who had walked beside Him during His earthly ministry, heard His teachings daily, seen the miracles He preformed regularly, and had been privileged to be one of the chosen twelve. 

… His disciples forsaking Him and fleeing. 

… Being unlawfully brought before Caiaphas to be tired at night along with the two false witnesses who would testify against him. 

… Being accused of blasphemy and having His clothes torn. 

… People spitting in His face, beating on Him, and striking Him with the palms of their hands. 

… Peter’s cursing and swearing – denying he even knew Jesus. 

… Being roughly bound and delivered to Pontius Pilate. 

… Slanderous accusations from the chief priests and elders. 

… The crowd lustily calling out for Barabbas, a convicted criminal, to be freed and for Him, the perfect and innocent Son of God, to be crucified. 

… His scourging of thirty-nine stripes where the flesh on His back would be ripped to shreds, as deep gashes opened up from the inhumane beating. 

… His being shamefully stripped by soldiers and crowned with thorns that would puncture holes on His forehead and scalp. 

… Being mocked, spit on, and hit on His precious head. 

… His weak, weary and beaten body having to drag the heavy wooden cross up the steep hill of Golgotha. 

… Being given vinegar mixed with gall to quench His thirst. 

… The unbearable pain of being nailed to the cross and the excruciating    pain of being raised in the air, as the cross was stood up on one end, and slammed with force into the ground. 

… Soldiers gambling over His garments for entertainment and mockery, at the foot of the cross. 

… People passing by saying abusive and cruel words to Him. 

… He saw that His time on the cross would be a lengthy six hours where the hot blistering Judean sun would beat down on His bruised, aching and torn body. 

…He saw how the unbearable heat would parch His lips and swell His tongue as thirst for water eat at Him. 

… He also saw how His tired beaten body would slump from His weight and how He would have to pull Himself up in order to breath. 

… Jesus saw His Father having to turn away from Him as he hung on the cross because He could not look upon the sin of humanity, which He would carry for us. This had to be the loneliest time of His entire life, to be forsaken by His Father! 

I truly believe that Jesus peered ahead to the year “2008” and the scenes that unfolded before His eyes were grim. The immorality, the ungratefulness, the division of church leadership, the unfaithfulness of many believers, the self-centeredness of the me generation, the all consuming love for fame, fortune, and power prevailing in the hearts of so many; the ungodly sin of homosexuality and it’s readily acceptance in society, the twisted and perverted values of a people who not only made it legal to murder innocent unborn babies, but saw nothing wrong with it.

The above scenes paint pictures of the depravity of man and of just how far sin can cause him to fall. What is so humbling to me is that Christ was still willing to drink from the “Cup” in spite of the wickedness of man. Praise God that there were other scenes which spotlighted true believers who were staying the course and being fruitful, who were willing to suffer for His sake, who were giving up the luxuries of this world to serve on mission fields where poverty, sickness, and even death were their constant companions, as they shared His message of salvation. I think He also gazed upon churches that were unified in His name and pastors who were still preaching with the power of the Holy Spirit and who weren’t afraid to call Sin – Sin! 

I’m so thankful the Lord was willing to drink His bitter “Cup”. That even knowing all He was to suffer and face, He still chose the way of the Cross. You see, Jesus saw clearly that He was our only hope for redemption and that without His shedding of blood and His obedience to the Cross we would all be condemned, to a literal burning hell. 

 Thankfully, Jesus also peered in the depths of the “Cup” and saw the scene of His “Victorious Resurrection” over death, hell and the grave. His ascension back to His Father, and His faithful Bride who He will soon be coming back to get! 

My life has never been the same after taking a look “In the Cup”, that Jesus so willingly drank in my place. That message preached over thirty years ago forever changed the way I look at the Cross. I’d like to encourage each of us to really and truly take an in-depth look “In the Cup” Christ so sacrificially drank for us. May we ponder what our destiny would have been had He not embraced the Cross. A sobering thought, but thankfully the “love” He had for us brought Him from Heaven, took Him to the Cross and kept Him there until the price for our “Salvation” was paid in full. In Philippians 2:8 it says, “And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” I pray that like mine, your look “In the Cup” will forever change your view of the Cross!

                                                God bless you until our next visit,

                                                                             Sheila

 
2006, Search The Word Ministry