Luke 22:28-30

“You are those who have stood by me in my trials; and I confer on you, just as my Father has conferred on me, a kingdom, so that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and you will sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.”

These words must have been both welcome and powerful for the disciples after the prior admonition about greatness. For the bar Jesus has set for them is high: servant leadership, sacrificial love, greatness through service. It is an uncommon, and not easily achieved, goal. Which is why these words of affirmation are so crucial.

How many times do we announce our expectations for people around us – whether at home or work, church or the community – without giving them our confidence that they can, indeed, meet those expectations? So Jesus doesn’t only call his disciples to higher ground, he gives them his trust and confidence that they can climb there.

These verses and the promises they contain are unique to Luke but in keeping with the overall treatment of the disciples in this Gospel. Perhaps because Luke knows their future story – which he chronicles in his Acts of the Apostles – he is more aware of their potential and more likely to craft his portrayal of them with greater care. Yes, they will also fall short of their Lord’s expectations, but in Luke’s telling we also hear the confidence Jesus has placed in them and the promises he has made to them. Confidence and promises that, in time, will make all the difference.

Powerful words, indeed.

Prayer: Dear Lord, remind us that we are not only called to believe in you, but to also remember that you believe in us and have given us trust and confidence to achieve those things to which you have called us. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


Post image: Sadao Watanabe, “Last Supper”