This is the high holy week of Christianity, the central celebration of followers of Jesus. This week, we remember Jesus’ moments with His disciples that dark Thursday night, His sacrificial death for us on Friday, and His glorious, world-transforming, history-shattering resurrection on Sunday!
Jesus ate supper with His disciples that Thursday evening. The Bible tells us He loved His disciples to the end. That night as they sat at the supper table, Jesus stepped back from the table to serve His followers. Their Lord and Leader stripped down and made Himself their servant. He washed their feet.
He called them His friends. He gave them the commandment to love one another as He loved them.
He told them that He was going away – that they couldn’t follow Him now. He was going to the Father, and later, He would come take them to the Father. Jesus said He was the way to the Father – and the only way. He promised to send the Holy Spirit when He had gone, and He said it would be better for them that way, because He had much more to teach his followers, but they couldn’t understand it yet. So, Jesus told them Holy Spirit would come to guide them into all truth. He told them they would do even greater things than He had done, and the Father would get the glory.
He took the Passover cups and said traditional blessings, but then He raised a fifth cup, which He called a “new covenant” – not in the blood of an animal – but in His own blood. (Luke 22)
I wonder if the disciples were very confused. I would have been wondering, “Where is Jesus going? Why can’t I follow now? How long will I have to wait for Him to come back for me? Who is this Holy Spirit, and what will His coming look like? We’ll do greater things than Jesus? A new covenant? In His blood?” (Goodness gracious! That sounds like the “eat my flesh” thing again that we dealt with in John 6:25-70…!)
Were the disciples wondering things like that? Were they overcome with sadness that Jesus was going where they couldn’t yet follow? What was the disciples’ grief like that Thursday night?
I hope you’ll take time to wonder about Jesus tonight. Wonder through John 13-17. Would you turn your wonder into conversation with God? Wonder is key to the depths.