July 16 2023
Today, Sunday July 16
Jesus Drank the Cup of Our Judgment
“We give thanks to You, O God, we give thanks! For Your wondrous works declare that Your name is near.
"When I choose the proper time, I will judge uprightly. The earth and all its inhabitants are dissolved; I set up its pillars firmly. Selah 'I said to the boastful, 'Do not deal boastfully,' And to the wicked, 'Do not lift up the horn. Do not lift up your horn on high; Do not speak with a stiff neck.' "
For exaltation comes neither from the east Nor from the west nor from the south. But God is the Judge: He puts down one, And exalts another. For in the hand of the LORD there is a cup, And the wine is red; It is fully mixed, and He pours it out; Surely its dregs shall all the wicked of the earth Drain and drink down.
But I will declare forever, I will sing praises to the God of Jacob. 'All the horns of the wicked I will also cut off, But the horns of the righteous shall be exalted."
Psalm 75 was written by Asaph as a song of victory and celebration to be sung, a poem to be read, a worship hymn of praise and of thanksgiving, of how the Lord had miraculously delivered Jerusalem from the powerful Assyrians. He and the inhabitants of Jerusalem were elated to discover one morning how the Lord had sent one angel during the night to slay 185,000 Assyrian soldiers and send the rest of them and their king back home to Assyria. Asaph proclaimed, “We give thanks to You, O God, we give thanks! For Your wondrous works declare that Your name is near.”
King Hezekiah and the people of Jerusalem were “lifted up” by God and “exalted”, while the enemy was put down and humiliated! Asaph the musician, then writes this song and acknowledges that God is the judge of all the earth and in His time, he will execute His judgment on the ungodly that will not repent! In verses 4-5, Asaph has a word for anyone who is arrogant and boastful and warns them that one day they will have to deal with Jehovah God!
In verses 6-8, Asaph encourages God’s people to apply His Word to our lives. How easy it is to hear God's message, leave the meeting, and then forget to obey what we heard! The real blessing doesn't come in the hearing of God’s Word but in the doing of it. Remember the admonition in James 1:22-25, “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.”
The word translated "lifted up" or "exalted" in verses 6, 7, and 10 has to do with God delivering His people from trouble and setting them free. In verse 6, the Old Kings James translation uses the word "Promotion" rather than “exaltation”. Promotion has nothing to do with getting a better job or being highly publicized. The arrogant were lifting themselves up only to be cast down by God, but the humble wait on the Lord and He lifts them up (1 Peter 5:6).
When Asaph says that this “exaltation does not come from the east, west, or the south”, (the desert, Egypt). A Jew could search in any direction, the east, west, or the south, but he would never find anybody who can do what only God can do. Why is north omitted? To look in that direction would mean seeking help from the enemies, Assyria and Babylon! (See Jer. 1:13-16; 4:6; 6:22-26.)
Only the Lord can truly deliver His people! This is the story line of the Bible! God delivered Joseph and made him second ruler of Egypt. God delivered David and made him king of Israel (1 Sam. 2:7-8). God delivered Daniel and made him third ruler of the kingdom.
In verse 8, God has a cup in His hand, “And the wine is red; It is fully mixed, and He pours it out”. The cup is a familiar image of judgment in the Bible (Job. 21:20; Isa. 51:17, 22; Jer. 25:15ff; Rev. 16:19; 18:6). The Jews usually drank wine diluted with water, but this cup contained wine mixed with strong spices, what they called a "mixed drink." (Prov. 23:30).
My friend, we as believers can go home from the worship service trusting the Lord to deliver us and judge our enemies! But the ungodly should go home concerned about future judgment. Thank God, the Lord Jesus Christ drank the cup for us on the cross! (Matt. 26:36-46). But those who refuse to trust Him will drink the cup of His judgment to the very dregs.