Passion Week – The Last Supper
Day Three – Tuesday
Scripture Passage: Luke 22:14-53
Parallel passages for further reading: Matthew 26:26-56; Mark 14:12-52; John 13:1-38
The Last Supper
14When the hour came, Jesus and his apostles reclined at the table. 15And he said to them, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. 16For I tell you, I will not eat it again until it finds fulfillment in the kingdom of God.” 17After taking the cup, he gave thanks and said, “Take this and divide it among you. 18For I tell you I will not drink again of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” 19And 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.”20In 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. 33But he (Peter) replied, “Lord, I am ready to go with you to prison and to death.” 34Jesus answered, “I tell you, Peter, before the rooster crows today,
you will deny three times that you know me.”
Thoughts from Josh Via – “Seeing, But Not Perceiving”
Do you remember those 3-D images that were really popular in the mid-90s? You know the ones. Every mall in America proudly displayed them in their center kiosks to attract would-be suckers, I mean, shoppers. These “works of art” (a term I use loosely) portrayed one image on the surface, but (supposedly) as one would peer through the picture with glazed eyes, a new 3-D image would begin to creep forward into one’s immediate field of vision, while the original image would remain foggy. I remember staring at these images, one after another, with no such success. My three brothers would ooh and aah about the images that were tickling their corneas, while I stared at nothingness, all-the-while becoming increasingly frustrated, contemplating punches to the throats of my siblings. As I peered onward, I knew what I was supposed to be seeing, but it never became clear. I was looking directly at it, having no idea what it was. I was seeing, but not perceiving.
When I read this passage in Luke’s Gospel (and many like this throughout the Gospels), I get the sense that the disciples had a lot of this going on. They saw things, but they didn’t know exactly what they were seeing. They saw Jesus perform miracles. They saw Him heal the sick. Restore the blind. Feed 5,000 men with a child’s Lunchable. On and on and on. Yet, they had no idea what they were seeing. They saw, but didn’t perceive.
As Jesus broke the bread, passed the cup and talked about his impending death, I can imagine the disciples with a glazed look in their eyes, hearing Him speak, but not quite comprehending. In fact, Luke reveals their blindness by showing how they were concerned with all the wrong things, namely, who was the greatest among them (v.24). And on top of that, Peter made it abundantly clear that he was ready for battle (v.33). He was ready to fight the Roman hordes and help usher in Jesus’ earthly reign as the conquering Messiah—completely missing the point.
A few hours later, while Jesus is sweating drops of blood in earnest prayer on the Mount of Olives, we find His three closest disciples (Peter included) sleeping beneath the stars, clueless and blind to the spiritual battle taking place all around them as the Son of God prepares to carry the sin of an entire planet on His shoulders. But this is the moment for which He had come. The moment where death, Hell and the grave would be defeated once for all. Praise God that the inability of His own disciples to see the reality and weightiness of the situation never deterred Christ from His ultimate objective—to put sin to death.
Some questions to think about:
When you think about Christ’s primary mission—to die for sin—is it a truth that has gripped your heart, or merely a fact without impact? How have you been guilty of seeing but not perceiving in terms of Christ’s sacrificial death for sin? Think about the last time you ate the Lord’s Supper. Did the full weight of Christ’s death hit you, or was it simply an activity on your checklist?
Suggested Direction for Prayer:
Jesus, thank You for suffering and dying for me. Open my eyes in a fresh way to see all that You have done for me. Remove my blindness that I may see You in all Your glory—Your past, present and future glory. Amen.