CHRIST’S NEW COVENANT
Gracious God, you have the power to turn my despair into hope. Thank you for giving me people of hope to help me.
Read MATTHEW 26:26-35
26 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.”
27 Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. 28 This is my blood of the[a] covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. 29 I tell you, I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”
30 When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.
Jesus Predicts Peter’s Denial
31 Then Jesus told them, “This very night you will all fall away on account of me, for it is written:
“‘I will strike the shepherd,
and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.’[b]
32 But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.”
33 Peter replied, “Even if all fall away on account of you, I never will.”
34 “Truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “this very night, before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.”
35 But Peter declared, “Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you.” And all the other disciples said the same.
- Matthew 26:28 Some manuscripts the new
- Matthew 26:31 Zech. 13:7
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
The Lord showed us how we should pray and celebrate his love for us. May the Holy Spirit lead us in deeper worship today.
Jesus’ actions are often full of symbolic meaning. His entry into Jerusalem showed him as Servant King, to be received with welcome. This meal is similar. The Passover feast was a celebration of the Jews’ deliverance from captivity. The blood of the sacrificial lamb placed on their doorposts would ensure their safety as the angel of death passed over. Now, through his words to his disciples, Jesus identified himself with the Passover lamb. It’s his body, his blood that will bring safety and deliverance. In sealing the new covenant with God, Jesus discloses himself as Savior from sin. Like his disciples, we receive Christ’s body in faith, symbolically, in communion.
On the Mount of Olives, Jesus needed to warn the disciples about what lay ahead. It must have been very uncomfortable to hear his prediction that they would not stay the course. After the meal and joyful singing, Peter’s confidence was strong. He would never desert Jesus! Jesus knew better, however, and his prophetic word, offering the details of Peter’s denial, probably stayed with that disciple forever.
Jesus’ compassionate attitude toward the disciples is extended to us. He knew that they would desert him, but didn’t reproach them. Even when Peter contradicted him, Jesus didn’t respond with contempt. He simply described the outcome with clear accuracy. Jesus knows that our weaknesses will lead us to sin. Peter thought his love for Christ and his faith in him were strong enough to withstand anything. He was wrong. We can easily be self-assured about our own discipleship. Yet, like Peter, we are only safe when we replace confidence in our own strength and ability with the humility of depending only on God.
What are the areas of weakness in your life where you need more dependency on God? Pray now that God will increase your trust in him.
Mighty Lord, because of the resurrection, I have been transformed. Because I know my own strength, I trust in yours. I want to serve you faithfully and fruitfully.
Book and Author Intros
Click here to sign up to receive the EXTRAs via email each quarter.