And he said to them, “I have eagerly desired to eat the Passover with you before I suffer.” Luke 22:15
Jesus eagerly awaited the final meal with His disciples just before His
He said it Himself. “Before I suffer.”
I’m struck by the strength in Jesus’ ability to separate the last supper from the most horrific event of His life. Knowing what was forthcoming shouldn’t He have been filled with dread? Jesus tucked a beautiful lesson in this statement that I think all of us can glean wisdom from. The enemy will surely steal unguarded moments if we’re busy pondering our next steps.
Come with me. Let us enter the upper room together. Let’s take some time to reflect on the great sacrifice Jesus made for us. Let us approach this event with a holy reverence meditating on all we have received through Jesus’ death on the cross.
A quiet intimate room hosts the most important meal ever served. A group of rag-tag followers reclined comfortably while Jesus sat at the head of the table. Against the soft glow of candles He shared great mysteries of life while the smell of freshly roasted lamb and baked bread filled the air with an aroma that enhanced the intimacy and allure of the event.
And when he had given thanks he broke it, and said, “This is my body which is broken for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way also the chalice, after supper, saying, “This chalice is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” I Corinthians 11:24-25
Merely hours later the words Jesus spoke would come to pass as He became the sacrificial Lamb for the sins of the entire world.
After dinner the disciples retreated to the Garden of Gethsemane. There in a deafly silent night Jesus wept bitter tears. In anguish He cried out to God for another way.
But Jesus was the only way
Suddenly a band of soldiers descended upon the Savior. Through His sorrow and torment He watched as a familiar face came through the darkness and placed a kiss upon His cheek.
The greatest betrayal of all time delivered with a gesture created for love.
Judas ~ one who sat at the table took communion with the devil instead of the Savior.
Then the most horrific chain of events took place. Jesus’ body became the bread He spoke of at the table as heartless soldiers tied him to a scourging post and whipped Him relentlessly. A barbaric and corrupt society allowed Him to be beaten beyond recognition. Pious religious leaders looked on. Faithful followers swelled in sorrow. Onlookers gawked with curiosity as they filled every pathway en route to Golgotha watching Jesus stumble under the weight of the cross.
Every step of the way He was poured out like the wine offering He had served only a few hours before. Being violently nailed to a cross His blood flowed from His arteries and veins and seeped down the wooden cracks of an unforgiving beam.
In agony Jesus was suspended for all to see. Then sin gathered from the four corners of the earth from the dawn of time to the close of creation was cast upon Him. In those devastating hours Jesus bore the full weight of the sins of mankind. He was filthy.
And God turned away…
Imagine the torment Jesus endured. He had never been separated from His Father. How could He be? His Father was everything. The pain of separation must have been heavier than the sin debt He carried.
A sky eclipsed in darkness and Jesus breathed His last. Suddenly the earth trembled in violence. The Son of God had fallen. He was removed from the cross and buried in a cold cave. Trampled under and tossed aside. A stone rolled in front of the tomb was the final word on that grim Friday.
The morning of the resurrection roared louder than Friday!
Through the quiet ~
Within the darkness of a tomb ~
A heart began to pump. Blood coursed through veins. Lungs began to breathe. And Jesus opened His eyes! He removed the grave clothes meant for a dead man and through a blinding light He came forth from the tomb.
With the battle at His back Jesus brought forth life through His broken body. With the battle at His back Jesus brought forth forgiveness through His spilled blood. All for you and me. We are the recipients of this immeasurable extravagant gift.
How could you, Jesus? I don’t understand. But I know I’ll never stop thanking You for waging war with death on my behalf! I’ll never approach communion lightly again. I’ll take the time to meditate on what You sacrificed for me. As I take of the bread I will remember how your heinous death granted me a glorious life. As I drink the cup I will remember that You became the filthiest sin so I can be spotless. As you entered the grave I will remember how you granted me eternity with You. What a Savior! The most eloquent words can never properly express my appreciation for all You’ve done!
Aren’t you so grateful, friends? Can we come together in unison Sunday night at 6 p.m. for prayer and a time to honor our soon-coming Savior? Let us give ourselves to fasting for the day so our hearts are prepared to come before Him. Tuesday is a big day in our country. Let’s take this opportunity to come together and pray as we ready ourselves for a very important election.
Blessings friends, Lynn
He is despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised and we did not esteem Him. Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. Isaiah 53:3-5
And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. Hebrews 10:10
In fact, the law requires that nearly everything be cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness. Hebrews 9:22
“For the bread of God is the bread that comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” John 6:33