#HolyWeek2021 – Maundy Thursday: The Last Supper and Arrest

Welcome to the Clincarthill Parish Church Holy Week Reflections. My name is Sheila. Today is Maundy Thursday, and we reflect on the theme of “The Last Supper and Jesus’ Arrest”. We read about this in the Gospel according to Luke, chapter 22:

14When the hour came, Jesus and his apostles reclined at the table. 15And he said to them, ‘I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. 16For I tell you, I will not eat it again until it finds fulfilment in the kingdom of God.’

17After taking the cup, he gave thanks and said, ‘Take this and divide it among you. 18For I tell you I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.’

19And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.’

20In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you. 21But the hand of him who is going to betray me is with mine on the table. 22The Son of Man will go as it has been decreed. But woe to that man who betrays him!’ 23They began to question among themselves which of them it might be who would do this.

After the Supper, Jesus and the disciples retired to the Garden of Gethsemane, where Jesus spent time praying, then talking with His disciples.

47While he was still speaking a crowd came up, and the man who was called Judas, one of the Twelve, was leading them. He approached Jesus to kiss him, 48but Jesus asked him, ‘Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?’

49When Jesus’ followers saw what was going to happen, they said, ‘Lord, should we strike with our swords?’ 50And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear.

51But Jesus answered, ‘No more of this!’ And he touched the man’s ear and healed him.

52Then Jesus said to the chief priests, the officers of the temple guard, and the elders, who had come for him, ‘Am I leading a rebellion, that you have come with swords and clubs? 53Every day I was with you in the temple courts, and you did not lay a hand on me. But this is your hour – when darkness reigns.’ AMEN.

Yesterday, we heard that Jesus being anointed was a sign that He was going to die. Today, He gives us another symbol, in bread and wine. This is sometimes known today as Communion, or the Lord’s Supper.

We believe that this meal is special. We use bread as a way of remembering Jesus’ body being broken on the cross. We use wine to represent His blood, which was poured out for many, as a sacrifice, taking away the sin of the world. Christians celebrate the Communion meal often, to remind us of what Jesus’ sacrifice means for us, and to help us to feel closer to Him.

Take a moment and reflect: what does it mean to you, that Jesus was willing to take upon Himself the sin of the world, to allow you to be close to Him?

If you are taking part in building a Holy Week display, today’s symbol is a wine glass. Add the glass to the display, as a reminder of the Lord’s Supper, and the sacrifice Jesus was about to make.

Our Holy Week journey continues tomorrow, so please join us for that. To conclude, let us share in a prayer:

Dear God: thank you for the Lord’s Supper, which reminds us of Jesus’ sacrifice. And thank you that Jesus was willing to make that sacrifice, which we will hear more about tomorrow. Continue with us on our journey, until then. We pray this in Jesus’ name; Amen.