"This is what your Sovereign Lord says, your God who defends his people: '[Behold,] I have taken out of your hand the cup of staggering; ...the goblet of my wrath, you will never drink again."
(ISAIAH 51:22, NIV)
Vivid medieval frescoes show that the great terror at that time was the thought of facing the last judgement. These days the emphasis has changed to secular worries such as terminal global warming, meteor threats, mega tsunamis, volcanic eruptions, and so on.
The word “staggering” in our verse is translated variously as terror, drunkenness, reeling, or trembling. But the word that really captures it for me is from the old Greek version of the Old Testament: “calamity.” Jesus drank the cup of calamity – the whole world of evil and sin – for us on the cross so that we will never have to drink of it ourselves. The worst blow He has saved us from is the rightful, dreadful penalty for sin and all its effects. He accepted total calamity so that we will never suffer ultimate calamity.
In our family I am the expert stain remover. I use many branded stain antidotes. But the real Stain Remover for the indelible pollution and wreckage of sin is Jesus. “The blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7).
NOT ONLY DOES HE REMOVE STAINS, BUT HE ALSO RESTORES THE FABRIC OF OUR LIVES AS THOUGH NO STAINING HAD EVER TAKEN PLACE.