Day 21 – Jesus’ last meal with his friends

Bible reading: Luke 22:7–23

Jesus eats his last meal with his apostles

7 The day came for Jewish people to eat the meal of flat bread which has no yeast in it. They had to kill a young sheep for the Passover meal on that day. 8 So Jesus said to Peter and John, ‘Go and prepare the Passover meal for us to eat. Then we can all come and eat it.’ 9 They asked him, ‘Where do you want us to prepare the meal?’

10 Jesus replied, ‘Listen. When you go into the city, a man will meet you. He will be carrying a jar of water. Follow him until he goes into a house. 11 You must then say to the master of that house, “Our Teacher sends this message to you: ‘Where is the room for visitors? I will eat the Passover meal there with my disciples.’ ” 12 The man will then show you a large room upstairs. It will have all that you need in it. Prepare the Passover meal there for us all.’

13 So Peter and John went into the city. They found everything that Jesus had told them about. So, they prepared the Passover meal.

14 When it was time to eat the meal, Jesus arrived. He sat down with his apostles to eat it. 15 He said to them, ‘I have wanted very much to eat this Passover meal with you. It has to happen before I die. 16 I tell you this: I will not eat another Passover meal in this world. Now it is a picture. But when God begins to rule in his kingdom, then this meal will become completely real. I will eat it again then.’

17 Then Jesus took a cup and he thanked God for the wine. ‘Take this cup,’ he said to them. ‘Each of you drink some wine from it. 18 I tell you this. I will not drink wine again until God begins to rule in his kingdom.’

19 Then he took a loaf of bread and he thanked God for it. He broke the bread into pieces and he gave some of it to each of them. He said, ‘This is my body. I am giving it to save you. When you eat this meal from now on, remember me.’

20 Then after supper, Jesus took a cup of wine and did the same thing. He said to the disciples, ‘This cup shows the new promise that God makes because of my death. When I die, my blood will pour out of my body. I will do that for you. 21 But look! The person who will give me to the rulers is sitting at the table with me. His hand is eating the same food as I am. 22 The Son of Man must die in the way that God says. But it will be bad for the man who gives me to my enemies.’

22:20Most people that obey Christ still meet for special meals. They remember what Jesus did for them. They eat bread and they drink wine together. They are obeying him when they do that.

23 The 12 apostles asked each other, ‘Who is the man that would do this thing?’

Luke 22:7-23 EasyEnglish Bible (EASY)

Reflection

It was Passover time, the annual seven-day festival when the Jews remembered the great way God had saved them from slavery in Egypt. And which was their beginning as a nation. This was the moment when Judas betrayed Jesus. And Jesus saw it as a very appropriate time to have a last, solemn meal with his friends. He sensed that his death was coming. And he considered it as the way to an even greater rescue than the rescue of the Israelites from Egypt.

His body would be broken on the cross for them. His blood would be spilled. The original Passover was marked by the death of a lamb whose blood was painted over the doors of every Jewish home. They did that so God’s judgement would ‘pass over’ them. The Jews never forgot it.

But now, Jesus sees his death like that of the Passover lamb. He is going to die so that his followers could escape God’s judgement on the evil in their lives. Then they could ‘cross over’ from death and judgement into a new quality of life – like the Jews who had crossed over the Red Sea to escape the Egyptians. His death would create a new relationship between God and themselves. They must never forget it.

Christians have never forgotten it. During Holy Communion in churches, Christians are given bread and wine. They are symbols of Jesus’ body and blood that he gave freely for them to make them free from guilt. This helps them to grow in their new life. If Jesus thought you were worth dying for, then surely he must be worth living for?