Greetings in the name of Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:39)
Now the Festival of Unleavened Bread arrived, when the Passover lamb is sacrificed. Jesus knew that the hour had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end. (John 13:1) Thus, Jesus gave an unusual instruction to Peter and John, and said, “Go and prepare the Passover meal, so we can eat it together.”
Peter and John were somewhat puzzled. They looked at each other for a moment. Then with courage, they asked back to Jesus, “Where do you want us to prepare it?”
Jesus gently replied “As soon as you enter Jerusalem, a man carrying a pitcher of water will meet you. Follow him. At the house he enters, say to the owner, ‘The Teacher asks: Where is the guest room where I can eat the Passover meal with my disciples?’ He will take you upstairs to a large room that is already set up. That is where you should prepare our meal.” They went off to the city and found everything just as Jesus had said, and they prepared the Passover meal there.
When the supper time came, Jesus and His disciples came up the room, and sat down together at the table. Jesus said, “I have been very eager to eat this Passover meal with you before my suffering begins. For I tell you now that I won’t eat this meal again until its meaning is fulfilled in the Kingdom of God.” (Luke 22:15-16)
Then he took a cup of wine and gave thanks to God for it. Then he said, “Take this and share it among yourselves. For I will not drink wine again until the Kingdom of God has come.”
He took some bread and gave thanks to God for it. Then he broke it in pieces and gave it to the disciples, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”
After supper he took another cup of wine and said, “This cup is the new covenant between God and his people—an agreement confirmed with my blood, which is poured out as a sacrifice for you. (Luke 22:19-20)
The disciples could not understand the meaning of what was told by Jesus. They just ate what were presented by Jesus. While eating, they looked each other why Jesus was talking about his body, the cup, the new covenant, being poured out as a sacrifice for you. Even so, they were in a good mood. It was a special evening to them, and it was not like any of the other suppers that they had together.
In the middle of the supper, Jesus suddenly stood up from the table, took off His robe, wrapped a towel around His waist, and poured water into a basin. Then He began to wash the disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel He had around Him. Nobody spoke about anything, but when Jesus came to Peter. Peter resisted by saying “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?”
But Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.” (John 13:7) Peter was persistent by saying “No, you shall never wash my feet.”
Jesus calmly answered with His love, “Unless I wash you, you won’t belong to me.” Peter exclaimed, “Then wash my hands and head as well, Lord, not just my feet!”
Jesus replied, “A person who has bathed all over does not need to wash, except for the feet, to be entirely clean. And you disciples are clean, but not all of you.” For Jesus knew who would betray him. That is what he meant when he said, “Not all of you are clean.” What they had just heard was even stranger to the disciples. They carefully looked at the face of Jesus.
Then Jesus clarified. “But here at this table, sitting among us as a friend, is the man who will betray me. For it has been determined that the Son of Man must die. But what sorrow awaits the one who betrays him.” After hearing this, there was a big turmoil among the disciples. They began to ask each other which of them would ever do such a thing.
Oddly, the debate among them to figure out who would ever do such a thing ended up an argument among themselves. Each one tried to state what he thought. The environment became chaotic, and nobody could talk to anyone anymore. Soon one disciple raised up his hand, calling for an order, but it was ignored by the rest. Another attempted the same. It did not work either. Then the focus of the debate was drifted to a new one: who should be the leader among the disciples. Of course, nobody wanted to be a follower. Jesus silently looked at what the disciples were arguing about.
Finally, Jesus broke His silence and told them, “In this world the kings and great men lord it over their people, yet they are called ‘friends of the people.’ But among you it will be different. Those who are the greatest among you should take the lowest rank, and the leader should be like a servant. Who is more important, the one who sits at the table or the one who serves? The one who sits at the table, of course. But not here! For I am among you as one who serves.” (Luke 22:25-27)
Then Jesus continued telling the meaning of His death and resurrection, although they did not fully understand at that time. After saying all, Jesus looked up to heaven and prayed for the disciples (and all believers to come, i.e., us) – make His disciples one in Himself as He is one with God, and God Father’s love be with them forever.
Give thanks to God, who gave His only begotten son! Jesus loves us as He loved His flawed disciples, who were still full of desires of the flesh. He loves us to the end as He loved His disciples right before His sacrifice on cross. Yes, His sacrifice is our gain. Though His death, we are forgiven. Through His resurrection, we have the hope. In His love on the cross, we have the eternal assurance. This is the blessing to those who have faith and eagerly wait for His second coming.
Come, Lord Jesus. Come. Your love never fails. Your Love is inseparable from us, and Your Love endures forever no matter what happens to us. Praise the Lord!
Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. (1 Corinthians 13:8 )
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