Dear Father, I praise You for the gift of Your power and strength, which enables me to stand firm in times of crisis.
Read Luke 22:1-23
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
Celebrations are good times to be with family and friends. Today we will read of a celebration that has been going on for thousands of years.
Luke wrote earlier of Jesus’ warning about those who will seek to destroy the disciples because of their beliefs. Today, Luke tells us that betrayal, suffering and death are waiting to happen to Jesus. His enemies are moving in, determined to destroy him (1-6).
Consider what could be your reaction if you were certain that someone had plans to destroy you. We see a surprising response from Jesus. Instead of being depressed over his betrayal, he prepares a celebration (7-13) to put everything in the right perspective. First, he aligns himself with a greater historical pattern. The Passover, in which God had intervened miraculously with God’s people (Exod. 12), is the framework for the celebration; betrayal and death are the present circumstances. Then, Jesus invites his disciples to celebrate (14-23); he had “eagerly desired” (15) to celebrate with his disciples. He builds on the historical event and gives a new, additional meaning to God’s redemptive power. When he gets to the climax of the celebration, he says, “do this in remembrance of me” (19). Thus, Jesus calls us to continue the celebration that started in one room in Palestine, and continues around the world and throughout history, with millions and millions of celebrating disciplesﾗincluding you!
The human race was not able to live under God’s will, so they lost their alignment with God. God promised a permanent way of restoring that alignment through Jesus’ death and resurrection. Yet, before this event took place, God gave us other events to symbolize the redemption to come, the main ones being Passover and the Lord’s Supper, or Eucharist.
Look back to the redemptive acts of God. Celebrate with other Christians at the table at your first opportunity.
Lord Jesus, You were known to the two on the Emmaus Road when You broke bread with them. Reveal Yourself to me when I next gather at Your table.
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