Mark 10:35-40: Jesus' Cup and Baptism

Not open for further replies.


Puritan Board Junior
[35]And James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came up to him and said to him, “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you.”
[36]And he said to them, “What do you want me to do for you?”
[37]And they said to him, “Grant us to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your glory.”
[38]Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or to be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized?”
[39]And they said to him, “We are able.” And Jesus said to them, “The cup that I drink you will drink, and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized,
[40]but to sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared.”
(Mark 10:35-40 ESV)

I assume that Jesus is referring to the Cup of God's wrath that was poured out on him on the cross when he refers to drinking the cup that he drinks. How can we, in this passage James and John, drink that cup along with Jesus? The Reformation Study Bible commentary explains it as essentially sharing in Jesus' sufferings, but I don't see how our earthly suffering, bad as it may be, can be counted anywhere near drinking the cup of the wrath of God.

I'm even more confused by what Jesus means by sharing his Baptism.

What are your thoughts on what Jesus is referring to?


Puritan Board Post-Graduate
How can we, in this passage James and John, drink that cup along with Jesus?

I think it's a leap to extend the passage beyond James and John to all believers, except perhaps in a spiritual sense. It seems more likely he is referring to their persecution for preaching the gospel. James was martyred early. John was lashed with Peter (Acts 4-5) and exiled (Rev. 1).

Jack K

Puritan Board Doctor
Also, you don't have to take this passage to mean they (or we) drink the cup to the full extent that Jesus did. Clearly none of us do. But still we "share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death" (Philippians 3:10). The myriad of ways in which we are joined to Christ makes a great study, and the Mark 10 passage is certainly an interesting part of that.
Not open for further replies.