You are Drinking One of Two Cups
Updated: Oct 19
“For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel--not with words of human wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power. For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: "I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate." Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?” 1 Cor 1:17-21
I've heard the Lord say, "Tell them not to drink it." The "it" being, God's cup of wrath. The world -- particularly, North America -- is guzzling away on God's "cup of wrath". He is sending messengers to warn and explain how we can abide in his mercy, because judgment is coming.
Warning about God's wrath is God's mercy. Holy fear is a friend that we should not recoil from. If we welcome conviction, it leads to deliverance, peace, joy, freedom, love, power and soundness of mind (see 2 Tim:1:7, Romans 2:4, Gal 5:22-23, Hebrews 12:3, Prov 3:11-12).
The Lord showed me, in a brief dream, that many are enjoying a false sense of security. Many have not exchanged the cup of God’s wrath with the empty cup of saving faith in Jesus Christ, because they have divided hearts that love the world and the pleasures of sin. His mercy is calling to tell us that time is running out.
In a split-second dream from the Lord upon waking, goblets were nearly at the lips of those that I saw holding them, full to the brim of the wine of God's wrath. Some of the people I saw in the dream grew up in church. Yet, these people were maintaining a sort of, "life's a beach" vibe, indicating that they are oblivious to the fact of God's wrath upon them. I was told simply, "Tell them not to drink it."
For in the hand of the Lord there is a cup with foaming wine, well mixed, and he pours out from it, and all the wicked of the earth shall drain it down to the dregs. Psalm 75:8
God’s cup of wrath is explained in the book of Numbers, Deuteronomy, Jeremiah, and Revelation 14. It is a symbol of God’s anger and justice when people will not repent. As with the Isrealites in these books of the Old Testament, God’s anger is burning against our living however we want to – doing whatever “feels right” and “looks good” to us. We have picked up strange new gods and leave his Word to collect dust on our shelves. We neglect our relationship with him and are entertaining ourselves to death.
The cup of wrath is justified, because it reflects the contents of our hearts. Many hearts are serving self, comfort, worldly success and the gods of this world. Many hearts are not submitted as bond-slaves of Jesus, alone. Many hearts are still serving the tyranny of sin, with a vague hope in the grace of Jesus that they hope will tie their lives up -- with their sin and worldliness--in a bow that is presentable in heaven before a holy God. These hearts have been deceived. These hearts are not reading God's word. These hearts have not taken hold of the power of cross to put sin to death.
The purpose of warning isn't to create "doom and gloom" or to judge others. It's to draw people closer to the Lord, so that he can do his business with each of us, individually -- me included. Warning that judgment is coming isn't to create panic, but to implore us to live repentantly and rewardingly in the fear of the Lord. It's to encourage us to be single-minded on Jesus, where we may have been double-minded with the world and our flesh. I mean to serve you by exhorting you to focus on the Lord, so that we will endure what is ahead with his protection and provision.
Much of the modern "church" is misleading people into believing that the grace of the cross means tolerating sin. The truth is, that grace comes loaded with power to wage war against sin and to overcome it, victoriously (see John 14 and 15). This is not a works-based gospel, God forbid. It's the gospel of grace, through faith, that transforms us. It's the gospel that delivers us from the bondage of the sin that leads us to destruction.
Consider the word of the Lord in the following scriptures:
Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature. Romans 13:14
“We know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that says, I know him, and doesn’t keep his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.”
I John 2:3–4
“Whatever we ask, we receive from him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.” I John 3:22
“For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous” I John 5:3
“For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace." Romans 6:14
“For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world.” Titus 2:11–12
You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. James 4:4
Christ drank the cup of our punishment, in all its torture and agony, because he loves us. He drank it right down to the dregs (Matthew 26:39). A desire to obey the word of the Lord and grief over sin is the fruit of someone whose heart has properly gripped what took place on the cross at Calvary, when Jesus drank the cup of the wrath of the Father over our sin against him. On the other side of genuine repentance and God's forgiveness, is the detesting of sin and a ferocious desire to put it to death in our lives.
Christ drank God's cup of wrath for our sin upon the cross . . . . for those who put their hope and faith in the fact that he actually did this for them. For those who haven't put their faith in Jesus -- for those who reject his sacrifice -- know that you have kindled the wrath of God who sent his son to die for you. To bleed to remove the power of sin from your life so that you will glorify him. I say this to emphasize that the time to repent is narrowing.
For our sake, he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. 2 Corinthians 5:21
The cross comes from the Latin, "excruciating". How are we demonstrating our gratitude for this sacrifice on our behalf ? Are we provoking continual excruciation in the heart of God with willful sin and worldliness? It we are, it's not going to go unchecked. Because he loves us, it agonizes him. He doesn't want to see us choosing destruction and bondage to sin.
Ephesians 4:1 exhorts us, "As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received." I desperately need the grace of God, through the power that comes with faith, to be set apart from the world and to put to death the desires of my flesh that wage war in my members against the Sprit of God (Romans 7:23).
We need the power of the cross to grant us a revelation of Christ's love in order to crucify vanity and the idols of this world. We need the power of the cross to to crucify our taking offense against the words and actions of others. We need the power of the cross to not grumble and complain. We need the power of the cross to overcome addiction and to seek comfort in the Lord above all other vices. We need the power of the cross to expose the lies of culture and of the devil that we am unwittingly believing in or participating in. We need the power of the cross to maintain peace with those around us and to pray for our enemies. We need the power and grace of the cross to put our phones away so that we can read and meditate on God's living-giving word.
When I read Psalm 119, I'm always moved by David's zealous passion for the word of the Lord and his judgments. This is a good passage to read to become aware of any areas that we are deficient in, in our love, delight and obedience of God's word. God wants to work the same awe-struck wonder in our hearts as he did David's. We can pray through this Psalm. We can repent and ask the Holy Spirit to help us regard God's word like David does. (In fact, if you don't read anything past this sentence, just go read Psalm 119!) Here:
We aren't saved by our obedience or bible reading. We are saved by faith in what Christ did for us, not by what we do for him. But, followers of Christ are called to look different from the people of the world. We are called to be priests and ambassadors of his kingdom. The word is what convicts us of sin in our hearts and lives. God's word is what heals us, delivers us, sends us, and increases our faith.
Are we exhibiting the fruit of the Holy Sprit or the fruit of the world, whose god is the devil, according to scripture (2 Cor.4:4) Every provocative, sexualized piece of skin that we post on social media, grieves the Holy Spirit an serves the agenda of Satan in your life and in those around you. Every time we sing along to songs about sex or do not take lustful thoughts captive, grieve the Holy Spirit. He sees when wives are not submissive to their husbands and when husbands do not love their wives, a picture meant to express the relationship of Christ with his church. Every time we do not bridle our tongue, we grieve the Holy Spirit. When we harbor bitterness in our heart towards someone we felt has wronged us, we are not exhibiting the fruit of a heart that has been freed by God's forgiveness towards us. God's word explains to us, these kinds of things. It explains that Christ came to deliver us from them, not through our own strength and will power, but through the power of this love.
So when you, O man, pass judgment on others, yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God’s judgment? Or do you disregard the riches of His kindness, tolerance, and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness leads you to repentance? But because of your hard and unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of wrath, when God’s righteous judgment will be revealed.
When we seek God to operate on our hearts through his word, we are transformed into the likeness of Christ -- the very reason for which he saved us. We can't reflect his glory if our face isn't in his word above other things.
I don't do any of this perfectly. Far from it. But, through the grace that comes with faith in the living word of God, Christ Jesus, we can strive to take hold of that for which Christ has taken hold of us (Phil 3:12). There are endless ways to sin and only one exit. Praise God, that holy despair over the revelation of our deep-running wickedness has a remedy. May God have the grace to grant this revelation to each of us, so that by acknowledging the poverty of our spirit, we can truly inherit the kingdom through grace.
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation, he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. 1 Corinthians 10:13
We are not under the transformational power of God's saving grace if we love what God hates. Satan has deceived many into believing that God would allow his own, sinless son to go through the crucifixion, yet give us a pass. The only pass that we are offered is through genuine faith in Jesus and his sacrifice that exonerates and redeems us – and removes the power of sin off us. God's grace regenerates our hearts through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, so that we no longer love sin and the things that the world loves.
Will we still sin? Yes. Our old nature will wage war against the new man that we are becoming in Christ until we go to glory and become exactly as he is. The point is, are we waging war against sin? Or, have we lay down in the bed of our sin – enjoying it, rationalizing it or resigning to it?
What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. Romans 6:1-23
Jesus did not die on the cross to minimize the gravity of sin. Whether we have become consciously numb to sin or not, it is still poisonous to our souls and our lives. Christ died so that we will trust in his righteousness – which comes with the power and intention to produce righteousness in us.
For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit, you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. Romans 8:13
The love of God grants us the new life and the resurrection power of Christ, so that we may be conformed to the image of his son, reflecting a holy Father. If Christ dwells in us, we love what God loves and hate what he hates, and we possess the desire to pursue a relationship with him through his word, so that we understand how to love him. This includes accessing his storehouse of grace so that we can acquire his power to cease from secret sins that our consciences may have become seared by through repetitive indulgence. If we are sons and daughters of the Most High, we come out from the world to be separate – the very definition of holiness.
Therefore, “Come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you.” 2 Cor. 16:7
Unfortunately, many people want to have the world and their flesh, as well as entrance to the Kingdom. Jesus makes it clear that we cannot have both (Matt 6:24, James 4:4). Many are worshiping themselves, others, and the idols of “the pride of life” -- and of this world and what it defines as good and righteous (1 john 2:16, Isaiah 5:20). Many are minimizing the destructive nature of sin and its ends (James 1:15, 1 Peter 5:8). Many are worshiping a false Jesus with values that Jesus relegates as unimportant and even idolatrous in his kingdom (Matt 20:16). The way of the kingdom is very upside down, from the way of this world (1 Cor 1:17-21). The cross and the sermon on the mount was meant to prove this.
God's patience and long-suffering is long – but it isn't endless. His patience has worn thin, regarding rebellion against him. If we are loving sin or are hanging tightly to our own will and the world's ideologies, the spirit of God has not regenerated us from death into new life on the narrow path. On the wide path, we will reap destruction for ourselves (Matt 7:13).
We can profess the name of Christ, but not live in covenant with the Lord. We can profess the name of Christ, or say some kind of a "sinner's prayer" and then wander after the gods of this world – the god of the age – the god of this culture. If we love God, then we willfully submit to the open heart surgery and correction of his word. We don't have to be outright defiant or blasphemous to drink of the cup of the wrath of the Lord. We can simply just be distracted. Whatever or whoever we make time for is what or who we love above the Lord. That is what is enthroned upon our hearts. God wants to occupy that throne, alone.
Remember Lot’s wife! Whoever tries to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life will preserve it. I tell you, on that night two people will be in one bed: One will be taken and the other left.” Luke 17:33
It's possible that this cup that the Lord showed me that people are about to drink, means that the church is about to be raptured. If so, those left behind will have to endure the horrors of the great tribulation, when God withdraws his spirit from the earth and unrestrained evil and torment is unleashed from the bottomless pit. This cup of wrath could also be about the eventual, eternal lake of fire, that those who reject God's son will inherit.
"And they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire." Revelation 20:14-15
If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell. Matthew 5:29-30
And the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever. Revelation 20:10
And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” Revelation 25:46
But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire. Matthew 5:22
Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was thrown into the sea and gathered fish of every kind. When it was full, men drew it ashore and sat down and sorted the good into containers but threw away the bad. So it will be at the close of the age. The angels will come out and separate the evil from the righteous and throw them into the fiery furnace. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Matthew 13: 47-50
If by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly.
It could be about sweeping judgment across the earth that even the church will remain to endure -- famine, war, plagues, pestilence, and the drunken reeling of the earth (Isaiah 24). It could be that God is about to hand the unrepentant over to the reprobate mind of insanity that cannot receive the truth (Romans 1:28). According to what I have found in the Bible about the cup of the wrath of God, it could be any of the above.
Thus the Lord, the God of Israel, said to me: “Take from my hand this cup of the wine of wrath, and make all the nations to whom I send you drink it. Jeremiah 25:15
He also will drink the wine of God's wrath, poured full strength into the cup of his anger, and he will be tormented with fire and sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. Revelation 14:10
The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell, and God remembered Babylon the great, to make her drain the cup of the wine of the fury of his wrath. Revelation 16:19
For all nations have drunk the wine of the passion of her sexual immorality, and the kings of the earth have committed immorality with her, and the merchants of the earth have grown rich from the power of her luxurious living.” Revelation 18:3
And another angel, a third, followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and its image and receives a mark on his forehead or on his hand, he also will drink the wine of God's wrath, poured full strength into the cup of his anger, and he will be tormented with fire and sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. Revelation 14:9-10
Regardless of how this wine goes down, we mustn't disregard the mercy of the Lord to warn us, in real time, that we don't have to drink it if we repent. Sadly, many will go back to sleep. Many will rage against the Lord as judgments pass (See Isaiah 8). Some will repent and be saved.
Of the various biblical ways that God judges nations and individuals, one detail that he has highlighted to me is famine. This will symbolize the current famine for God's word. This will be a man-made famine, much like the Holomodor of 1932, but it will be blamed on "climate change" and more in order to garner support and cooperation from people for purposes of control. Wicked people with the spirit of the antichrist are setting the stage for the solution of the new world order. God will allow this, as a righteous judgment. He is also going to use this famine, particularly of wheat, to alert the world to the reality of himself -- the bread we really need. Though many will still refuse to repent, some will, and they will be saved.
"For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit." Romans 14:17
So, what is happening in the spiritual will be paralleled in the natural. Much of organized religion has ceased to preach the word of God, so as not to offend the government, maintain social dignity, and keep a flock who wants to hear only “smooth things” (Isaiah 30:10). Wheat and bread will disappear, symbolic of God's nourishing word and of Jesus Christ, "the bread of life." This will take place because we have ceased to seek him and feed him to the lost. Instead, many pulpits are preaching sugar, and not the real gospel. But, God is raising up a faithful remnant to fulfill his promises, and the truth always goes against the flow of the world.
"And I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues." Revelation 18:4
Where does our hope lie? "Cursed are those who put their trust in mere humans, who rely on human strength and turn their hearts away from the LORD." (Jer. 17:5 ) The best efforts and solutions of man will not stop the judgment of the Lord on an unrepentant nation. No particular vote or election will turn around this nation. No vaccine. No crop or farming solution. No peace treaty. No going green. No economic solution. Because America will not repent of ungodliness, she will be judged. But, we can repent on a personal and individual level.
Let no one deceive himself. If any of you thinks he is wise in this age, he should become a fool, so that he may become wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in God’s sight. As it is written: “He catches the wise in their craftiness.” And again, “The Lord knows that the thoughts of the wise are futile. Therefore, stop boasting in men.”
1 Cor. 3:19 - 21
Our nation has turned aside to falsehoods. These deviations from truth are leading to bondage and oppression. These falsehoods are cultivated by our trust in man, our attention to the media, the evil desires of our flesh, and the spirit of the antichrist. These things are stealing the nourishment of God's word that peels us away from the ways of the world, so that we can better love God and those in it.
Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and encourage with every form of patient instruction. For the time will come when men will not tolerate sound doctrine, but with itching ears they will gather around themselves teachers to suit their own desires. So they will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. 2 Tim 4:2-4
Many are following after the flesh and not the Spirit. Our compassion and sympathies are being manipulated by the political sphere and the enemy of our souls. Many have accepted lawlessness in the name of empathy and are basing truth on "lived-experience." Instead of discerning and rejecting what is evil according to the Lord, we are focused on engaging in conversations that are framed by the enemy. All in the name of “social relevance” – something that God never commands us to do, but rather, avoid (Titus 3:9, 2 Tim. 2:23).
The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. 1 Peter 3:19
Love is what it all comes down to. It's all about God's love. Does that mean that God's messages are always easy to hear? Of course not. That’s why Jesus Christ was called "the rock of offense" (1 Peter 2:8). But, the heart behind his message is Love. The initial offense of the gospel against our natural pride and the desires of our flesh is meant to give way to the joy and freedom that we get in God's forgiveness. The generous riches of his kingdom more than make up for the cost of following Jesus. Amazing grace, how sweet the sound!
The bible tells us that a time will come when people will close their ears to messages like this. Have we turned to teachers that satisfy our itching ears – Who tell us, sweetly, that following Jesus should be comfortable and profitable from a worldly perspective? Are we listening only to teaching that doesn’t challenge us to sacrifice, as Christ sacrificed for us? Do we understand that we do not gain the new life of Christ, if we don’t lay our lives down?
The things of God have been left under the lie that they are burdensome and oppressive. We cling to the desires of our flesh and the world in lying fear that God will be withholding if we actually start to obey him. But, God's higher wisdom, that he loves us enough to come and instruct us in, is for our liberation and protection. It is so that our joy may be made full. We are called to trust his love and wisdom as he calls us to obedience.
The Law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is trustworthy, making wise the simple. The precepts of the LORD are right, bringing joy to the heart; the commandments of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes. The fear of the LORD is pure, enduring forever; the judgments of the LORD are true, being altogether righteous. Psalm 19:7-9
If we are nuanced, gray, or neutral about what the Bible says about certain topics, so that we can present ourselves as compassionate to the world, gratify our feelings or maintain comfort, then we are guilty of idolatry. God wants us to promote unity and peace. But, biblical unity is not for unity's sake. It's for worshipping Christ and for making disciples of all nations. (Luke 12:51) We are called to speak the truth in love, because faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. (Romans 10:17)
We can hear words like “judgment” and “repent” and assume that God is mean and unloving. Even more so, we can assume that people who implore others to get out from under God's wrath are judgmental and self-righteous. Often, people will confuse holiness with legalism.
And sometimes, this is true. Not everyone warning about God's judgment is doing it in God's spirit of love. But, the litmus test of truth is not whether or not it makes us comfortable. It's not whether or not it makes us feel good about our desires, our knowledge, and our choices. It's not whether or not it's well received by others. The litmus test of truth is the written, inspired word of God – given in a message that is not condemning, but inviting. Condemnation does not offer hope in Christ's finished work. Conviction is a merciful invitation. Hopefully, it inspires the fear of the Lord.
A follower of Christ who desires to walk in God's precepts is not legalistic. Legalistic is a term used to describe someone who thinks they can earn grace by their obedience. By law-keeping. True holiness is the effect of a heart that has been truly saved by Christ. We grow in holiness as the Holy Spirit sanctifies us to look more like Jesus. Obedience sets us apart from the world that Jesus calls us out of when he saves us.
Jesus gave us the ministry of reconciliation (2 Cor 5). Reconciling with God means having faith that God's son, Jesus has the perfect righteousness that we need in order to get right with God and be delivered from death. Our sin against God has purchased for us an eternity in the lake of fire. The only way that we can get out from under the wrath that we bought by missing the mark given to us by a holy God through his law is to believe that Jesus paid the penalty for our sin on cross.
The effect of faith on our lives is supernatural. It literally produces new life in us. When we are saved through faith, the Holy Spirit inhabits us and we become God's temple. His home. He lives inside us to transform our hearts into loving what he loves and hating what he hates. The Holy Spirit convicts us about sin and brings life to God's word when we read it. If we are obedient, then he progressively makes us more like Christ. He's even responsible for cultivating our desire and ability to obey him. It's by his grace that we strive at all.
And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. 2 Cor 3:18
There was missional urgency in the early church, because the disciples did not lose sight of the eternal consequences of our choice to follow Jesus or not. Our eternal destination is sealed in this lifetime. But even more urgently, was the imminent return of Jesus Christ, who will come to judge each one according to what he has done.
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.
2 Cor 5:10
The righteous judgment of God is when he simply allows us to have the death and its effects that we have purchased -- by falling short of his glory through our sin. When Jesus and the prophets warned nations – and especially God's people, it was because judgment was coming and he was calling people out of fornicating with the world into his arms of mercy and protection. To repentance.
“If anyone hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge that person. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; the very words I have spoken will condemn them at the last day. For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken. I know that his command leads to eternal life. So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say.”
Where there is no conviction, there is no faith. Without conviction, there's no repentance. Without repentance, there's no reconciliation. If we aren't reconciled to God, we are still "of our father, the devil." (John 8:44) The ministry of reconciliation requires that we turn to Christ. The other side of this narrow door is, affectively, a turning away from the world and sin (repentance). Obedience doesn't earn salvation. Salvation is by grace alone through faith alone. Obedience is the evident fruit of saving faith in Jesus Christ. We obey not to become God’s children, but, if we are his children.
Salvation by grace through faith is not an excuse to minimize God’s holiness or the practical outworking of salvation in our lives. Philippians 2:12 says, “Therefore, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not only in my presence, but now even more in my absence, continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling.”
God’s love does not nullify his judgment of sin. Salvation happens once, but this process of sanctification and deliverance from sin lasts a lifetime. The same spirit that saves us, also sanctifies us – cleansing us of what is ungodly. Our conscience becomes seared when we ignore conviction. This leads to blindness and delusion. Some of us need to return to the word and ask God to re-tenderize our consciences according to his will.
So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
John 8:31 - 32
I used to only share a half gospel with people. I worried that if I added the truth about sin, then people wouldn't want to hear about God's love. But God convicted me of an impure heart. He showed me that my heart was divided between soul-winning and acceptance from man. He revealed an adulterous heart in me. We must not judge others, but we must convey God's message of love because of his judgment – and not withhold the truth.
"Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom." Proverbs 8:10
We can't out-love God by tweaking his instruction to be more palatable to the world.
We have to make a choice today, whether or not we want to be disciples that are beloved by the world or disciples that follow Christ.
God is merciful when we repent and can help us love and serve him the way he wants to be loved and served. If we come back to him with a contrite heart, he accepts us and builds us up into obedient, holy, followers of the Way. He cleanses us of our sin as if it never were. Hallelujah. This is the power of the cross -- God's gift to mankind. God had his own son, Jesus, drink the cup of his wrath on us, for us. To set us free.
If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think someone deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified them, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, "It is mine to avenge; I will repay, "Again and again, "The Lord will judge his people." It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
(From Hebrews 10)
Think about that. Almighty God unleashed his full wrath towards our sin on his beloved, innocent son -- so that we could be made like Jesus and share his inheritance. But, like Esau, are we too, selling our birthright, for a meal? (Genesis 25) "For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?" (Mark 8:36)
In the days ahead, deception will be rampant, as it already is, and God will not allow those who are blinded by love of self, love the world, trust in man and love of sin to see it. They will be led by the bit in their mouth that they have chosen towards destruction, because they do not love the truth.
Whoever turns his ear away from hearing the law, even his prayer is detestable.
We cannot love both God and the world. We cannot serve both God and Man. Our hearts must be purely devoted to the Lord. Uncompromised devotion and obedience to the Lord is what God is after, because these are fruits of a heart that truly loves him. A heart that appreciates and believes in the sacrifice of God’s son on the cross is one that throws itself upon his altar – gratefully surrendered to him, no matter how hot.
I pray that we will not turn our eyes or plug our ears, but that we will hear his word and allow his spirit to work contrition in our hearts – contrition that brings blessing, conviction that brings freedom, and repentance that breaks the chains of bondage and paves the way to healing and new life abundantly.
"For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome, For everyone having been born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory having overcome the world: our faith."
1 John 5: 3-4
The LORD does not let the righteous go hungry, but he thwarts the craving of the wicked.
Fear the LORD, you His saints, for those who fear Him lack nothing. Young lions go lacking and hungry, but those who seek the LORD lack no good thing.
I once was young and now am old, yet never have I seen the righteous abandoned or their children begging for bread.
And, as with every message on holiness, we must humbly remember that our own obedience is as filthy rags next to the righteousness of Christ. It's his righteousness that saves us, not ours. The fruit of a heart saved by faith is gratitude and a desire to walk in holiness after the One who drank the cup of the wrath of God that we deserve.
I write this as a sinner who has been given much undeserved mercy and love by God. I have been forgiven and freed from sin, by God's grace. He wants to do the same for you. I pray that you will respond to him with love and submission. And when you fall, I pray that you will keep returning and will keep receiving of him. He has every single thing you need and loves you more than you can fathom.
The blood of Christ proves that God's love for us stops at nothing. He is trustworthy to take care of us in the valley ahead, if we are following him like sheep after a shepherd. Let's make sure that we are holding the empty cup, through genuine faith in Christ. Let us not delay.
The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
2 Peter 3:9
I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.
3 John 1:4
May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.
1 Thessalonians 5:23-24
Scripture and Context: What is God’s Cup of Wrath, and Who will Drink It?
What will judgment look like for Christians?
Psalm 119 - Why God's Word is So Awesome:
From Isaiah 51:
“Give attention to me, my people,
and give ear to me, my nation;
for a law will go out from me,
and I will set my justice for a light to the peoples.
My righteousness draws near,
my salvation has gone out,
and my arms will judge the peoples;
the coastlands hope for me,
and for my arm they wait.
Lift up your eyes to the heavens,
and look at the earth beneath;
for the heavens vanish like smoke,
the earth will wear out like a garment,
and they who dwell in it will die in like manner;
but my salvation will be forever,
and my righteousness will never be dismayed.
“Listen to me, you who know righteousness,
the people in whose heart is my law;
fear not the reproach of man,
nor be dismayed at their revilings.
For the moth will eat them up like a garment,
and the worm will eat them like wool,
but my righteousness will be forever,
and my salvation to all generations.”
Awake, awake, put on strength,
O arm of the Lord;
awake, as in days of old,
the generations of long ago.
Was it not you who cut Rahab in pieces,
who pierced the dragon?
Was it not you who dried up the sea,
the waters of the great deep,
who made the depths of the sea a way
for the redeemed to pass over?
And the ransomed of the Lord shall return
and come to Zion with singing;
everlasting joy shall be upon their heads;
they shall obtain gladness and joy,
and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.
“I, I am he who comforts you;
who are you that you are afraid of man who dies,
of the son of man who is made like grass,
and have forgotten the Lord, your Maker,
who stretched out the heavens
and laid the foundations of the earth,
and you fear continually all the day
because of the wrath of the oppressor,
when he sets himself to destroy?
And where is the wrath of the oppressor?
He who is bowed down shall speedily be released;
he shall not die and go down to the pit,
neither shall his bread be lacking.
I am the Lord your God,
who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar—
the Lord of hosts is his name.
And I have put my words in your mouth
and covered you in the shadow of my hand,
establishing the heavens
and laying the foundations of the earth,
and saying to Zion, ‘You are my people.’”
Wake yourself, wake yourself,
stand up, O Jerusalem,
you who have drunk from the hand of the Lord
the cup of his wrath,
who have drunk to the dregs
the bowl, the cup of staggering.
There is none to guide her
among all the sons she has borne;
there is none to take her by the hand
among all the sons she has brought up.
These two things have happened to you—
who will console you?—
devastation and destruction, famine and sword;
who will comfort you?
Your sons have fainted;
they lie at the head of every street
like an antelope in a net;
they are full of the wrath of the Lord,
the rebuke of your God.
Therefore hear this, you who are afflicted,
who are drunk, but not with wine:
Thus says your Lord, the Lord,
your God who pleads the cause of his people:
“Behold, I have taken from your hand the cup of staggering;
the bowl of my wrath you shall drink no more;
and I will put it into the hand of your tormentors,
who have said to you,
‘Bow down, that we may pass over’;
and you have made your back like the ground
and like the street for them to pass over.”
I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the Lord.