Luke 22:14-26 When the hour came, Jesus and His apostles reclined at the table. (the hour having come on the evening known as Maundy Thursday, a Latin word referring to the Lord’s last commands, knowing that the time had come for Him to be betrayed and crucified, Jesus is sharing the Last Supper, the Passover, with His disciples) And He said to them, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. (Jesus’ deep longing, His highest desire, even His intense yearning was to share this Last Supper with His friends; He knew what lay ahead, but He was eager to share this time of fellowship and teaching with the disciples, and He was eager to become the Passover Lamb of which this Feast of Unleavened Bread spoke; He is the Bridegroom eager for His Bride who will only be available to Him after His work on earth is complete; He still eagerly desires to share Himself with us today) For I tell you, I will not eat it again until it finds fulfillment in the kingdom of God.” (at which time, He as the Bridegroom will celebrate the heavenly Wedding Supper of the Lamb with us, His Bride, His Church) After taking the cup, He gave thanks and said, “Take this and divide it among you. For I tell you I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” And He took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is My body given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” In the same way, after the supper He took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is poured out for you. (after Jesus commands us to love each other, His second “Maundy” command is for us to take Communion in remembrance of Him; Jesus reveals to us here the astounding truth that God Himself chose to shed His Own blood and break His Own body on our behalf; this Last Supper is the fulfillment of all that the Feast of Passover had represented; as the Israelites were directed to eat of the Passover lamb, we now understand that His broken Body and shed Blood are the reason that God’s judgment passes over us) But the hand of him who is going to betray Me is with Mine on the table. The Son of Man will go as it has been decreed. But woe to that man who betrays Him!” They began to question among themselves which of them it might be who would do this. A dispute also arose among them as to which of them was considered to be greatest. Jesus said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who exercise authority over them call themselves Benefactors. But you are not to be like that. Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves.” (how often we totally miss Jesus’ real message right before us because we are focused on our own narrow and foolish desires of title and standing, when Jesus tells us the greatest among us are those who serve; only as we are in right relationship with Jesus will we be in right relationship with others, and that means, according to Jesus’ example, that we put others and others’ interests before our own, serving others in love and humility) John 13:2-5 Having loved His own who were in the world, He now showed them the full extent of His love. (not only through His actions that follow, but through His very death on the cross; the full extent of His love is to lay His life down for us whom He loves) The evening meal was being served . . . . Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under His power, and that He had come from God and was returning to God, (Jesus was fully aware of Who He was and from where He had come; as the Second Person of the Triune Godhead, God With Us, God Incarnate, He knew His rightful place was at the right Hand of the Father in the very throne room of God Almighty Himself) so He got up from the meal, took off His outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around His waist. (even though Jesus carried with Him the full resources and accolades as the Darling of Heaven, this little conjunction “so” conveys Jesus’ true servant’s heart; unlike most of us who, carrying such accolades, with, perhaps, a heavy sigh of resignation, would have used the word “but”; however, precisely because He knew Who He was and from where He had come, Jesus acted in love to those who had been arguing who was greatest among them; not “but,” instead, SO He got up; most of us would think if Jesus knew He was sent from His Father God and if He knew He was returning to His Father God and if He knew that all power was given to Him, here was still yet one more time Jesus would still need to relent to demonstrate His love yet again to these unseeing men; and especially, knowing all that, we would think He would choose to be served Himself before His great sacrificial death lying just ahead of Him; however, He did just the opposite; despite Who He was and what He knew about His Father and about Himself and about His imminent suffering, for those very reasons, precisely because of Who He was, He chose to stoop to serve; we can’t even comprehend such humility, such love!) After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash His disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around Him. (taking the garb and position of a lowly slave whose job it was to wash the dust from the guests’ feet, Jesus puts aside His position as God, as Messiah, and takes on the form of the lowest of servants, ministering to the needs of His beloved friends; through His every action, He gives a picture of His great love and deep desire to woo us to His salvation, a powerful picture of His laying down His life for us) May the Lord richly bless you this day! Submitted by: Sally Shields