Hope To The End
THE LAST SUPPER
According to Crucified on Thursday , The Last Supper would be on a Wednesday evening.
Matthew 12: 40 ..."3 days, 3 nights ..in the heart of the earth " )
Lord Jesus the same night in which He was betrayed took bread:
And when He had given thanks, He brake it, and said,
'Take, eat: this is My body, which is broken for you:
this do in remembrance of Me
For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup,
ye do show the Lord's death till He come." 1 Corinthians 11: 23-26
Whenever my soul longs for intimacy with the Lord, I go to the chapters containing the Last Supper episode. Here I find the last tender moments of Our Lord with those He loved. This is also my refuge whenever a loved one dies, for it talks about seeing them again later on. There is much comfort and solace in these passages
(John Chapters 13 through 17). And there is much truth and insight.
It is our belief that Jesus was celebrating A PRE-Passover Meal with His disciples on the night before He died. We do not believe that Jesus was celebrating THE Passover Seder
(which would be celebrated by all Jewry the following day).
Our Lord Himself was and is our Passover, (1 Corinthians 5:7 ) and He was slain---crucified--- the next day at exactly the same time, 3:00, as all the lambs in the Temple were being slain for the evening meal.
Jesus, our Passover, was slain ON the feast of Passover.
This scene here was the day of preparation....the day BEFORE Passover. Jesus was most likely celebrating a PRE-Passover meal with His loved ones.....a meal unique in its own right.....a meal of Remembrance.
HE LOVED THEM UNTO THE END
"Now BEFORE the feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that His hour was come that He should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved His own which were in the world, He loved them unto the end." John 13:1
Jesus is the Great Shepherd of our souls.
Hebrews 13:20; 1 Peter 2:25; 1 Peter 5:4.
He loves us "unto the end".
There are different endings:
Yes, the rapture is real....and so is the Great Tribulation. And we are to Pray to be counted worthy to escape all that is coming upon the world. God has two methods of escape....one is out of the situation and the other is through the situation :
Furnace Faith / Deliverance
Daniel Chapter Three
In the Gospel of John, the supper was ENDED as we come to this intimate discourse. The emphasis in John's Gospel is the heart-to-heart talk Jesus is having with His own by candle light.
The first thing Jesus does (before teaching His students the greatest lessons they will hear) is to rise, gird Himself and then bend low before each one (including Judas) to wash their feet. This washing was not done as a ceremonial ritual before eating a meal, since the meal was over by now. This washing pertained to the Gospel, and Jesus commissioning them all. The Sent One, sending. He still offered hope to Judas.
Here the Master Teacher---their Rabbi---was teaching the utmost lesson of lessons---that humility comes before greatness (opposite:pride comes before the fall). That even though our Lord was the greatest among them, it behooved righteousness to be as a servant to them.
Our Lord became the Suffering Servant of us all as Isaiah 53 reveals.
One who teaches, one who ministers (especially the Gospel) must gird himself with the Scriptures and then bend low to make the lesson as understandable as can be, in the eloquence and simplicity of a child or servant. The servant lays aside self, and girds himself with the WORD. In obedience to the Holy Spirit, he lets the waters of the Word cleanse those souls who have come thirsting..... "He must increase but I must decrease." John 3:30.
Luke 12:37 tells us that Our Lord will gird himself at the Marriage Supper and serve us meat...the meat of the truths we have longed to learn all our sojourning life down here.
In the washing of the feet the great I AM ( John 13:13) commissions them all to follow suit, to do likewise. Our Lord knew that His time on earth would be ending. His specific mission would be fulfilled and finalized. Yet the Gospel message must go on.....without His bodily presence. Jesus was now delegating the responsibility to His disciples to carry the Gospel message forward without Him here on earth.
It was the Message, irregardless of messenger.
Today, do we focus on the messenger (the minister, priest, radio and TV prechers ), rather than the meat of the message ? Do we accept errors mixed in with a little bit of truth because of the popularity of the one speaking? We need to be more discerning and re-focus on the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth of the message, irregardless of messenger. Our Lord can use a donkey if need be (Numbers 22:28) to get His message out, so we must never think more highly of media messengers than we ought.
sidenote: Can this also pertain to the Christian music industry?
Remember when worship consisted in communal singing? Today the emphasis is upon the individual artist. Though singular artists have their place, their place has been overly enlarged. Today some forms of worship have been equated with entertainment and commercialism.
"If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet: ye also ought to wash one another's feet". You ought also to delegate. Let your mantle pass. We must not try to be the whole answer for the congregation, as Zethro told Moses who then appointed the 70 elders. We must be replaceable at all times. We must have peers within the Body of Christ who can lead in worship with the same Spirit and zeal. The Gospel is not a Johnny-one-note. The members ought to be as strong in the Word as the pastor.
The next concept we come to in the Last Supper is BETRAYAL. One does not know the
penetrating sting of rejection until one has been betrayed by one of their own-- family friends, "christians", fellow "believers".... "false brethren"
2 Corinthians 11:26 and Galatians 2:4
During the Holocaust of W W 2 the Jews ( and righteous Christians) understood well the treachery of relatives and neighbors ; those who "go along, get along", following the Politically Correct ways.
[You may as well know, Timothy, that in the last days people will be treacherous.]
2 Timothy 3:4. paraphrased.
Treachery is sweet to the traitor. It's a heady feeling of superiority. Judas tasted that sugary ego trip as he shared the sop with Jesus. These two men were entering into 2 different covenants. Jesus was extending one more time the covenant of Life to Judas. Judas was consummating his covenant with death by hardening all feelings against the only One who loved him at that moment. Such is the elasticity of Agape love. It can embrace the traitor before the evil work is done. Jesus was teaching the lesson of Agape love. Judas was rejecting the only love left to save him.
Once the heart is hardened by our own free will, there is nothing even God can do. He will not violate our free will. People often ask, "How can a loving God send people to Hell?"
Well, God doesn't send anyone to hell. We send ourselves to hell.
"God is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance."
2 Peter 3:9
The Gospel records that John leaned on the bosom of our Lord and that he was the disciple "whom Jesus loved". In our competitive spirit we take that to mean 'whom He loved more than the others'. But that is not what the Gospel says. It says that John was the disciple whom Jesus loved. Jesus loved them all. It says so just a few verses earlier. John 13:1
The one REALIZING Jesus' love for himself is the one most loved.
Do we REALIZE that Jesus would die on the cross for us individually, even if we were the only person in the world ? Well that is the truth. He didn't die for any one person specifically over another. He died for anyone needing and wanting Him. The love cannot become realized until we recognize how uniquely we are loved, and then we are to respond in kind.
Rachel Joy Scott, Cassie Bernall ( martyrs of Columbine High School 1999 ) and other modern day martyrs understood how uniquely they were loved and they loved in kind. Please see "Spiritual Warfare" hopetotheend.com/little.html
Whenever we come to verse 23 in John Chapter 13, let us lay ourselves at the bosom of Christ and call ourselves the disciple whom Jesus loved. When we truly understand and realize that, then we too can love in kind.
We lay-persons must ask ourselves : "Are we reclining and abiding at the heart of Christ ?"
IT WAS NIGHT
All these events of the Last Supper took place before sundown, as evening was coming on----the meal, the washing of the feet, and the incident of betrayal.
It was only when Judas left the scene, that it was actually the dark of night.
Now the candles glowed brighter in the room, the anointing of fellowship was heavy in the air. The sweet perfume of deep and abiding friendship enclosed each one. Now came silver words from a golden tongue.
"The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times."
How each one of us longs to have been there on such a night of depth and bonding.
We can be there by the Holy Spirit. We can read these passages as one sitting at the table. We must join into this moment for the nourishment of our own soul.
Our Lord spoke words of love and commitment that night that no other religious leader in all of history could dare to equal. They cannot, for these are the words of Life spoken by the author of Life.
As our Lord looked over each one lovingly, He could see past their visage and into their future martyrdoms. Oh how tenderly He must have loved each one.
And still His eyes looked past this scene in 33 AD and Jesus saw all of His believers and followers and disciples and martyrs down through the ages until He saw our generation.
He saw us our generation . Here we are, 2014 +. Still clinging to His every word. Still believing and hoping and loving in Him. Still ready to lay down our lives with Him if need be.
"Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on Me through their word". John 17:20
He prayed for US directly on that night long ago.
These 2,014+ years are as 2 days to the Lord.( 2 Peter 3:8) He sees the future as if it were the present. He saw us in sweet communion with Him then, as we do so today. This is the uniqueness and expanse of "aortist time"--the timing of God. Aorist time sees the ending with the beginning. Aorist time is all time as one. Oh if we only understood how included we are in that holy night.
Oh how He loves you,
Oh how He loves me,
Oh how He loves you and Me !
Hymn: "O How He Loves You and Me !"
"Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the Body and Blood of the Lord.
But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.
For he that drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself,
not discerning the Lord's Body.
For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep (die).
For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged." 1 Corinthians 11:27-31
The Last Supper by V. Hoagland, CP
Three Days (Triduum) V. Hoagland, CP
Devotional: The Last Supper
Where Love Abides (God's Transforming Love)
Questions asked during the Last Supper
Sermon Resources---Easter....R. Fairchild
Richard and Charlene Fairchild's Easter Pages :
Passover Meal ? Yes. THE actual Seder ?....you decide. An article to ponder:
Jesus of Nazareth fulfilled all the Messianic prophecies
Unleavened Bread (Quickest Bread)
In a large bowl mix:
4 cups of flour
2 teaspoons of salt
1/4 cup of shortening (or oil, margarine or butter)
1 and 1/2 cups of water
Mix well until thoroughly blended.
Then knead your dough on floured surface for 3- 5 minutes.
Then divide your dough into 2 inch balls (makes about 10 balls)
With a rolling pin, roll out each ball on floured surface until the size of a pancake.
Then prick each piece of bread with a fork throughout.
(our Lord's Body was pierced).
Then bake each bread piece on a dry griddle (frying pan.... NON-coated, like cast iron or metal)
over high heat until lightly scorched---golden--- on both sides.
(This takes about a minute or so on each side).
Then put slips of aluminum foil between each piece of bread and keep warm
(lowest possible heat in oven)
in your oven---on a platter---until ready to serve.
For Communion, this bread is broken and shared; and then served with grape juice.
For regular meals, you can roll and eat, and also dip into sauces.
Next..... to Gethsemane