TITLE: Not Even A Sip
DATE: April 8, 2019
TEXT: Matthew 20:22 – ESV - Jesus answered, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I am to drink?” They said to him, “We are able.”
Along time ago Jesus asked me, just as He asks all of His disciples, "Can you drink the cup I am going to drink?"
I replied, "I've been a good Christian for quite a few years." He said, "You didn't answer my question. Can you drink my cup?"
That's when I remembered a time… it was 1914 and the ship the Empress of Ireland began her voyage. On board the ship there were 130 Salvation Army officers. During the course of the trip, the ship collided with a Norwegian vessel and floundered. While the ship was going down, the crew discovered that the vessel didn't carry enough life jackets for everyone.
No one told them to do it. They just did it. Could I drink the cup of those Salvation army officers?
How about the cup of the men and women who died as martyrs in the games of Rome? Can I drink the cup of the congregation in Ethiopia where 30 believers were slaughtered rather than denying their faith.
Could I have followed them, could I have drunk from the cup of those who have had to pay a tremendous price for their faith?
If I have doubts about my ability to share the cup of the martyrs and those who have had to pay a tremendous price for their faith, how is it possible for me to even consider drinking from my Savior's cup? It would be impossible.
He kept the laws, when I break them.
He was consistent, while I wobble. He gave freely, while I am selfish.
He was silent, in the face of accusation, when I would have strongly defended myself.
Jesus died for those who neither loved nor liked Him. I have a difficult time not seeking revenge on those who are less than nice to me. No, I cannot drink from that cup of unjust accusations, unfair trials, untrue allegations and painful death.
What I am able to do is bow my head in respect and give thanks for a sacrificing Savior Who drank pain here below, so I might have joy up above.
I can be devoted to the Lord Who took every drop of pain and poison the cup held so I might be spared. So, when Jesus asks, "Can you drink My cup?", I say, "Dear Lord, this sinner cannot. But I can praise You for Your sacrifice.”
THE PRAYER:: Dear Jesus, forgive me when I think that I am virtuous and good. I am the most miserable of sinners. So, I say, Lord, be merciful to me, a sinner, and give me the cup that I can drink. In Your Name. Amen.
The music which introduces and concludes our devotions was written by Guy Baumann. He along three of his brothers perform on the album: The Baumann Brothers which may be ordered here: http://thebaumannbrothers.com/index.html