It’s Thursday evening. Darkness falls on a Middle Eastern city and a group of men gather around a table. Some men want answers, others want power, others conceal their furtive motives and plans, and still others resign to die.
Tonight is different. In the past, their times of feasting were filled with so much laughter and celebration that some had accused them of irreverence and drunkenness.
But not tonight.
The brutal events and encounters of a tumultuous week birthed weary hearts and uncertain minds. Even now the weight of man’s rebellion settles on the back of the Son. He broke the bread, poured the wine and washed the feet of these first believers. How were they to know the import of this table? How could these twelve conceive that they would be the first to partake of this new and strangely anomalous feast?
This is my body…
This is my blood…
Remember this moment.
And I reply,
“I remember You, Lord Jesus Christ Son of God. I remember your constant longing for me to see You for who You really are. I remember the times when I had absolutely no one and You remained. You remained despite all the shameful wanderings that I created in the barrenness of my finite mind. You remained, even though I failed to rise above the waves of discontent that made a restful place in my heart. You remained, and the memories of every disappointing failure now are crushed under the weight of Your relentless love.”
We hear the strange and unthinkable declaration: “One will betray me.”
And in so many ways we all have.
The perimeter of conspiracy around these men grows smaller.
The unseen war of angels and demons is thick, visceral and taut.
This night and the day to come will amass the climax of redemption.
The fate of generations, hence and to come, hangs on every move.
As the meal ends, the disciples sing.
The last supper, the last song…
The labor of grace begins.
It’s Thursday evening.