Christ, a cup, a cry and a cross, were the first words on my mind as I woke up early on Palm Sunday morning. I would like to share my thoughts on those words as we look forward to resurrection Sunday.
In the 26th chapter of Matthew, Jesus talks about a cup. He prayed three times for his father to take this cup from him. Each time he continued with, “nevertheless not my will but your will be done.” What was in this cup? Pain, rejection and shame were three things. Jesus was not so much concerned about those. He knew his father would be right there with him through all of that. What concerned him most, what caused him to sweat drops as of blood, was the cup of separation. A time when a holy God would turn away from him as he bore the sin of the world. I am not sure we can ever grasp that to its depth. I read a poem a few years ago that says it pretty well: “Death and the curse were in our cup, oh Christ was full for thee, but though has drained the last dark drop, tis empty now for me.”
In the 27th Chapter of Matthew, Jesus cries out, “My God, my God why have you forsaken me?” What was the significance of this cry? I believe it was meant for us so we would know because he was forsaken that we never would be. He promises in his word that he will never leave us or forsake us. I love the first three verses in Isaiah 43: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you.
“When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you. For I am the Lord your God.”
Then of course we have the cross. The old rugged cross. The place where Christ sacrificed his life so that we may have eternal life. A line from the song “Amazing Love” tells it best. It goes, “I am forgiven, because you were forsaken, I am accepted you were condemned, I am alive and well, your spirit is within because you died and rose again.”
Christ, a cup, a cry, and a cross. Have a great resurrection Sunday.
Nick Hasselstrom is pastor of Evangelist of Cross Tied Ministries.