When the hour came, he took his place at the table, and the apostles with him. He said to them, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; for I tell you, I will not eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” Then he took a cup, and after giving thanks he said, “Take this and divide it among yourselves; for I tell you that from now on I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.”
What makes Jesus eager to share this meal, this Passover meal, with his disciples?
Is he eager because Passover is a meal of promise, a reminder of God’s deliverance from the slavery in Egypt and a promise that God will always deliver God’s people?
Is he eager because he stares his destiny in the face and now that it has started wants it to run its awful course?
Is he eager because he knows time is short and there is more that he wants to share with his disciples?
Is he eager because, knowing he is about to suffer, he simply wants the company of his disciples who have also, of course, become his friends?
Or perhaps he is eager for all these reasons and more. We don’t know. One thing we do know: Jesus knows full well what is coming, knows that this meal is his last, knows that these are among the final moments he has to spend with his comrades, knows that all he has imagined and dreaded and hoped for is commencing, knows that the kingdom he has sought to proclaim is coming and that the price of that kingdom is his life.
And he is eager.
Prayer: Dear God, when we look upon your Son and see his eagerness to embrace the cross, let us remember that all of this was done to show us how much you love us…and all your people. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Post Image: “The Last Supper,” Emil Nolde, 1909.