“You do not know what you are asking,” Jesus said to them. “Can you drink the cup that I am to drink? Or receive the baptism that I am to receive?”
of all the questions
this is the most mistaken
point 8 of my 16 point plan
clearly included a cross
you don’t get vicarious glory
there is no virtual reality here
if this is your question
a review is in order
baptism’s and Socrates’ cup
are specifically monogrammed
your pregnant behavior is yours
your acts of commitment are yours
we teach and learn assured accountability
copying answers to different settings fails
did you not read your notes
before setting up this appointment
What the …! Did you do any of the reading? Attend any class?
The sense of bewilderment comes out of the unwitting return to individual aggrandizement at the expense of mutuality. There is no sense of service in the request James and John bring. Their hearts have not been softened enough.
With that immediate response expressed, Jesus seems to shake his head and attempt to bring the brothers back to the point he has been making.
In the Hebrew scriptures, the figure of a cup is often used to indicate suffering. One example is Isaiah 51:17-22. In The New Revised Standard Version we read about a cup aptly described as a “bowl of staggering”. Suffering can stagger us.
Baptismal liturgies still carry Paul’s understanding from Romans 6:3, “Don’t you know that all who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?”
In these two questions we have a prompting to remember the first two points of Jesus’ latest sermon: “Suffering, Death, and Resurrection”. This reminder is given in hope that popular images of resurrection or heaven will be critiqued rather than extending their current weakened understanding of both to a zero-sum game of winners and losers. To revisit suffering and death gives opportunity to recast resurrection away from triumph to ordinary relationships with one another.