July 6, 2021
"This is what the Lord, the God of Israel said to me: ‘Take this cup of the wine of wrath from My hand and make all the nations I am sending you to drink from it."
“This is what the Lord, the God of Israel said to me: ‘Take this cup of the wine of wrath from My hand and make all the nations I am sending you to drink from it. They will drink, stagger, and go out of their minds because of the sword I am sending among them.’ So, I took the cup from the Lord’s hand and made all the nations drink from it, everyone the Lord sent me to.” Jeremiah 25:15-16
God is the Lord of all creation, the Judge of every nation. As Jeremiah was prophesying the imminent destruction of Jerusalem (at the hand of the Babylonians), he also prophesied global judgment on the nations whose idolatry had enticed Israel to forsake the Lord. We see the same “cup of wrath” imagery in the New Testament.
“Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and He told His disciples, ‘Sit here while I go over there and pray.’ Taking along Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, He began to be sorrowful and deeply distressed. Then He said to them, ‘My soul is swallowed up in sorrow – to the point of death. Remain here and stay awake with Me.’ Going a little farther, He fell facedown and prayed, ‘My Father! If it is possible, let this cup pass from Me, yet not as I will, but as You will.’” Matthew 26:36-39
The “cup” offered to Jesus was mandatory, for sin must be punished justly.
“Then you are to say to them: This is what the Lord of Hosts, the God of Israel, says: Drink, get drunk and vomit. Fall down and never get up again, as a result of the sword I am sending among you. If they refuse to take the cup from you and drink, you are to say to them: This is what the Lord of Hosts says: You must drink! For I am already bringing disaster on the city that bears My name, so how could you possibly go unpunished? You will not go unpunished, for I am summoning a sword against all the inhabitants of the earth – this is the declaration of the Lord of Hosts.” Jeremiah 25:27-29
Even Jesus’ disciples were unable to remain vigilant. All mankind is sinful and in need of merciful salvation. Jesus loved us while we were yet sinners. (Romans 5:8)
“Then He came to the disciples and found them sleeping. He asked Peter, ‘So, couldn’t you stay awake with Me one hour? Stay awake and pray, so that you won’t enter into temptation. The Spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.’ Again, a second time, He went away and prayed, ‘My Father, if this cup cannot pass unless I drink it, Your will be done.’ And then He came again and found them sleeping, because they could not keep their eyes open. After leaving them, He went away again and prayed a third time, saying the same thing once more. Then He came to the disciples and said to them, ‘Are you still sleeping and resting? Look, the time is near. The Son of man is being betrayed into the hands of sinners. Get up; let’s go! See – My betrayer is near.’ While He was still speaking, Judas, one of the Twelve, suddenly arrived. A large mob, with swords and clubs, was with him from the chief priests and elders of the people.” Matthew 26:40-47
Only sinless Jesus could have accepted the cup and fulfilled God’s just requirement.