Jesus replied, "The one who has dipped his hand into the bowl with me will betray me. The Son of Man will go just as it is written about him. But woe to that man who betrays the Son of Man! It would be better for him if he had not been born." Then Judas, the one who would betray him, said, "Surely not I, Rabbi?" Jesus answered, "Yes, it is you. "While they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, "Take and eat; this is my body." Then he took the cup, gave thanks and offered it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it anew with you in my Father's kingdom." Matthew 26: 23-29
We often read and hear about the Last Supper and how Jesus knew of the impending betrayal by Judas. Then in His next breath, He gave thanks and followed through in His teaching of the new covenant and what would take place in obedience to His Father. I would think that for most of us if we found ourselves in this position we would try to save ourselves including getting in Judas’ face and telling him what we think of him, and attempt to persuade him from betraying us. It is said that the innate nature of man is survival and self-preservation. Yet, Jesus willfully and obediently proceeded with the Last Supper, but giving thanks. Question: Would you or I be able to be thankful knowing that we would be betrayed and that we would face certain death?
It is so pleasingly insightful to know the following through these scriptures of the Last Supper:
- That it commemorates the Passover meal with Jesus and his disciples, reminding us of how the Lord saved the first born of Israel through the blood of the lambs painted over the door jams. So to that we would all be saved through Jesus the Lamb of God that would be sacrificed.
- That it is the Eucharist or thanksgiving in commemoration of the Last Supper and what Jesus would do to take away our sins.
- It is the establishment of Communion or our ability to commune with God and other believers.
Although it was the Last Supper, it was the first Thanksgiving of the new covenant.
How appropriate it is that this reading would come so close to Thanksgiving Day, which I hope you all enjoyed. As we all gave thanks for all of the blessings we enjoy of provision, health, family and all that we can think of. Let us remember the true blessing of what Christ did on the cross for our sins and the eternal life and freedom we enjoy with the privilege of communing with God through Jesus.
What if it was our last supper or meal as those who are condemned on death row? Would we have the heart and obedience of Jesus? Would we be able to give thanks? Would we do what is best for others knowing that we would suffer for their wrongdoings?
In this. Season of Thanksgiving, may we reflect on what Christ did for our sins and how we enjoy the blessings of God even in these tough and challenging economic times. For the world may be able to take away our money, position and things that are dear to us; however the world cannot take away our relationship, communion and eternity with God.
Dear Lord, thank you for Jesus. Thank you for bringing remembrance to us of not only what Jesus did on the cross by giving his life for our sins, but His heart in doing so; that He gave thanks knowing that by His actions we would be spared damnation in hell and that we would be able to commune with you. I am blessed and thankful for Jesus!