The 11 Events On Jesus’ Last Day of Freedom
There are three days in Holy Week we emphasize. The first is Palm Sunday, a triumphant, festive and exciting day! Then Good Friday, the day that Jesus died. The third is Easter Sunday, Resurrection Day! There are other events that took place during the week that are noted in scripture but these are the ones we emphasize. We’re not told anything about Jesus’ activities on Wednesday. It’s possible He stayed in Bethany the entire day.
Then comes Thursday.
We don’t emphasize Thursday as a special day, unless you are part of a church tradition that celebrates Maundy Thursday. Even then what’s usually emphasized is the Lord’s Supper or the washing of the disciples’ feet.
Thursday of Holy Week was the last free day of Jesus’ life. As we look at all 11 events on that day we see something surprising.
11 Events On Thursday of Holy Week
- Jesus sent Peter and John to prepare for the Passover meal Luke 22:7-8.
- Jesus ate the Passover meal with the twelve disciples Matthew 26:20.
- During the meal Jesus washed the disciples feet John 13:1-20.
- Jesus indicated Judas as the betrayer and he left them Matthew 26:21-25.
- Jesus told the disciples they would all desert Him Matthew 26:31-35.
- Jesus instituted the Lord’s Supper Matthew 26:26-29.
- Jesus taught them while still in the upper room John 14.
- As they walked to Gethsemane Jesus taught them one last time John 15-16.
- Near Gethsemane Jesus prayed an intercessory prayer for them and us John 17.
- In the garden of Gethsemane Jesus prayed by Himself while in deep agony Matthew 26:36-46.
- Jesus was betrayed by Judas, arrested and forsaken by all Matthew 26:47-56.
As I read this list I am struck by something interesting. There is no record of Jesus doing any miracles or healings. He had no interactions with the Jewish leaders. There is no record of any interaction except with His disciples. Jesus devoted His last day of freedom to His disciples.
How do you want to spend your last hours on this earth? Most would say with those we love. That’s what Jesus did.
On that last day Jesus . . .
- spent the entire day with just His disciples
- modeled humility and service for them
- warned them about hard times to come
- gave a new significance to the bread and the cup
- taught them how to live fruitful lives
- prayed for them
As I have read and re-read the events of that day one thing jumps off the page at me, Jesus loved His disciples so very much.
And Jesus loves you and me so very much, too.
As you go through this Thursday of Holy Week, pause throughout the day and try to imagine what Jesus was doing at the same time on His last Thursday of His life. Imagine the love that compelled His every action. Then take a deep breath and smile because He loves you that much, too!
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