Reading through the Bible together

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

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As a missionary nurse I have watched many people die amidst horrible family conditions and I’d always think, “What a terrible time to die!”  But look at Jesus.

As the most amazing evening in history approaches, when our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is to suffer the most intense agony ever experienced, that He might “save His people from their sins,” these very people are found in complete turmoil.

Satan is managing Judas who agrees to betray Jesus to the religious leaders for a small sum.  They rejoice (verses 1-6).  Jesus’ disciples argue about who is the greatest, and later sleep through the crisis hour (verses 24, 45).  Peter disbelieves Jesus’ tender personal warning and consequently denies His Lord (verses 33, 54-62).  And in the end, Jesus’ own people condemn Him on His personal testimony, which is against their own man-made law (verse 71; Deuteronomy 17:6). What a spectacle for heaven’s eyes.  What a time for the Purest and Best to lay down His life!

In contrast behold Jesus: Amidst the chaos He says lovingly to the twelve.  “With desire I have wanted to eat this Passover with you.” Jesus desires to spend time with us (verse 15).  As He pours the grape juice and breaks the bread Jesus says, “Do this.  Remember Me.” He knew we would forget (verses 17-20).  Addressing the strife among His disciples about who is the greatest, Jesus points to Himself  “as He that serveth.”  Then encouraging their faith, He points them to the time when they shall “sit on thrones.”  What a compassionate Lord! (verses 25-30).  Jesus prays alone in the garden and as the agony intensifies He prays more earnestly. What an example for us! (verse 44).  Suffering the betrayer’s kiss, the denial of Peter, the condemnation of the Jews, Jesus tells the truth, though He knows it will mean for Him the cross (verses 67-70).

In the crisis at the close of Jesus’ earthly life, amidst the chaos, Jesus stands true to principle. What about us?  We are now entering the closing crisis of earth’s history.   Chaos is everywhere.  So let’s spend a thoughtful hour each day looking and thinking about Jesus. 

Lynn Carpenter
Missionary Nurse (retired)