Sermon delivered December 14, 1996

by Don Gettys

McDonald Road SDA Church, McDonald, TN.

"Fill My Cup"

(A communion sermon)

I'd like you to turn in your Bible to 1 Corinthians 11. You recall when Jesus was having the Last Supper. They distributed the bread. They distributed the cup. And Jesus at one point said, "Drink ye all of it." You're going to be hearing those words later on when we come to the communion table. I would like for you to look at 1 Corinthians 11:25. It says, "This cup is the New Testament in my blood. As oft as ye drink it, you drink it in remembrance of Me." We are supposed to drink that cup, aren't we. Jesus said, "Drink ye all of it." And here, Jesus says, " oft as ye do drink it, you do it in remembrance of Me." So what is inside of that cup we are drinking? That's what I want to focus on today.

What is inside that cup? It is basically, according to Luke 22:20, a new covenant in Jesus' blood. What we have in the cup in the Seventh-day Adventist church is the pure juice of the grape. Not white grapes because we use juice that is red. It looks just like the blood of Jesus might have looked because it is a symbol of the blood of our Savior which was spilled for us.

Look at John 7. That cup represents Jesus Himself. Today we are going to partake, in a way, of Jesus. Look at John 7:37. Jesus said, "If any man thirst, let him come unto Me and drink." Now it may be different in your version of the Bible, but, basically if we are thirsty, where do we go to get a spiritual drink? We need to come to Jesus Christ and get a spiritual drink. The problem is: are you thirsty today? Jesus is the water of life, and when you come to communion service, you need to come thirsty.

My wife and I were one time invited to someone's home many many miles away. It took us all day to drive to their home. We got there about supper time and we thought this wouldn't be fair for us to barge in on them at supper time. They didn't know when we'd be arriving. So we stopped at a place and got a nice big tossed salad and big pizza. We were stuffed. When we got to their house and knocked on the door, and lo and behold, the lady said, "We've been waiting for you to get supper on the table. We knew you'd come. And we're ready." And they had a banquet for us. All of our favorite things. And we were as stuffed as thirteen vegelinks in a twelve vegelink can. What else could we do? We sat down and started eating with them. But I must say, it was a chore to eat that food. It wasn't fun. And I think they sensed there was something wrong with our appetite. It must have been disappointing.

When you come to the table of Jesus you need to come hungry. Don't you come all filled up with the things of the world. You come empty. When you come to the heavenly filling station, don't come with your tank full. "I've just come to get topped off." You come on empty, and God will fill you, and the price is free.

I love that. Jesus is the water of life. Look over here at Jeremiah 2:13. "My people have committed two evils: they have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out broken cisterns that can not hold water." Jesus is the water of life, isn't He? Let's not be hewing out cisterns that can't hold Jesus. Jesus is the hidden source of life for Christians today.

A Christian physician used to make his rounds in the hospital and he would never be seen without a pink rose on his lapel. Whenever he was in his office or wherever he was, he wore the beautiful pink rose. And sometimes people would ask him about that, and the good Christian would answer back and he'd say, "Well, actually, that's a Christian rose." And they would say, "What do you mean by that?" Then he'd turn back his lapel and show the back side where there was a little water bottle back there that the rose was getting nourishment from. That was keeping it fresh, keeping it looking beautiful, and keeping it nice. "It's a Christian rose because it has a hidden source of life." It had a hidden source of beauty. I want to tell you that when Jesus is hidden in your heart you have a fountain of blessing.

When Jesus unites Himself with the Christian He supplies nourishment. He supplies power and as long as we are connected to that hidden Source of life we're going to make it through the trials of this day. We're going to make it. Jesus wants to become the secret reservoir of strength for the Christian. And He can only do that by being in direct connection with us. He wants to live in our heart. When Jesus Christ lives in the heart, He gives fragrance to our witness, and we're even more beautiful.

Revelation 22:17. "Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life." What a blessing it is. We can have Jesus, and He wants to live in our hearts. This beautiful presence of Jesus is actually the fountain of youth. So when you come today, and you drink of that cup that will be placed in your hand, remember that the liquid in that cup, even though it just grape juice, is a symbol of Jesus Christ Himself; of the fountain of life; of the fountain of youth; of eternal life. And because Jesus drank the cup of death, today we can drink the cup of life. Isn't that a good exchange? I like that.

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