Raised With Christ, Part I: He Drank Our Cup
I’ve just returned from an incredible weekend at our church’s annual winter retreat. I had the privelege of helping to lead worship-in-song for one of the sessions, and to hang out with the team for the weekend. God caused us to gel in awesome ways and I praise Him for giving us unity in Him. SO. Over the next few posts, I’d like to share some of the things God taught me through the sessions.
We spent most of the weekend in Colossians 3:1-17, but we spent the first session in Revelation 20:11-15. This passage deals with the fury of the wrath of God, and how He will deal with sinners on the judgment day who do not repent of their sin. The passage says that the wrath of God is so terrible that even the sky will try to escape His presence on that day. The passage says that God will “throw” anyone who does not treasure Him into the lake of fire. I am not going into great detail here because the passage is frightening enough if you think about it. Read it.
In Revelation 14:10, John compares the wrath of God to a cup, and all those who do not bow their knee to Him will drink it. This is the most terrible reality in the universe. HOWEVER. Those of us who trust Christ should be so happy that God’s wrath is a “cup”! Why?
Luke 22:42 finds Jesus praying in the Garden of Gethsemane. He is distressed like never before. NOT because of the physical pain He would suffer, though He knew that would be awful. NOT because of the emotional pain He would to suffer when all His friends betrayed Him, though that would be awful. Jesus was distressed because He KNEW that He was about to absorb the full wrath of God on the cross. Jesus prays, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.” (emphasis mine) Here Jesus compares the wrath of God to a cup. And we know the end of the story. He would drink it. So the point of Revelation 20:11-15, for the Christian, is to make us love the reality of grace more deeply than we do right now. When we see what we deserve, and what Christ went through so that we would not have to endure that, it ought to stir us to the deepest thankfulness we have ever felt. “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus”! (Romans 8:1). Be encouraged, brothers and sisters!
This is an incredible truth, but there is so much more that the Christian must understand. What’s next, beyond these realities? That is what Colossians 3:1-17 talks about. By God’s grace, I will share some things He showed me from this passage over my next few posts.