Beth Moore, from Living Proof Ministries, walks us through a traditional Passover (Seder) and back to The Last Supper before Jesus was betrayed.
The Last Supper was a celebration of the Passover. Part of the prescribed meal was the lamb served at the table. This was to commemorate what happened in Exodus 12 when God told Moses to instruct the Israelites to put the blood of (an unblemished, male, without defect, slaughtered at twilight) lamb on their doorposts (Ex 12:5-7). The blood of the lamb would be a sign where those who believed God were and the plague of death will not touch them. God would Pass-Over them when He strikes Egypt.
Beth Moore points out on that particular Passover meal with Jesus and His disciples, the lamb (of Exodus 12) was on the table. But the the Lamb of God, Jesus, was also at the table “knowing the significance of everything because He is about to fulfull it,” says Beth.
John 1:36 When (John the Baptist) saw Jesus passing by, he said, “Look, the Lamb of God!”
Part of the meal consisted of lifting of the cup of wine (representing the blood of the lamb) four times, coinciding with the four promises of God for His people from the Old Covenant
Ex 6:6-7 Say, therefore, to the sons of Israel, ‘I am the Lord, and
Cup 1: I will bring you out (from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and)
Cup 2: I will deliver you from slavery.
Cup 3: I will also redeem you (with an outstretched arm and with great judgments.)
Cup 4: Then I will take you as My people
and I will be your God; and you shall know that I am the Lord your God, who brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians.
Beth shows how these promises happen in our midst as God brings us out from our normal worlds to Himself, to deliver us from our personal enslavements and bondages (to sin or other people or dependencies), redeem us, and take us as His people.
At the Last Supper, Jesus goes on to demonstrate His example of servant leadership. On what would have been the washing of the hands, He went on to wash the disciples’ feet, a job that is supposed to be for servants.
Jesus went on:
John 13:14 Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. 15 I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. 16 Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. 17 Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.
Jesus demonstrated His example of being the servant of the people He loved, taught, and died for (including the one who would betray Him), reminding His disciples that “no servant is greater than his master.” and that there is blessing for those who follow His example.
The Passover dinner would come to a point wherein the father of the house would answer the question, “How many favors has God bestowed on us?” and he would enumerate what God had done for His people. (Had He brought us out of Egypt but not execute judgment on our enemies, Had He given us their possessions but not divide the sea for us, etc.) Those present would reply “Dayenu (Hebrew for “It would have been enough”)” to mean that God could have stopped His faithfulness by doing one thing but kept on doing more for His people.
Jesus at that table knew that…it WAS NOT enough. Jesus knew He had to die to complete God’s work.
Gal 2:21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”
If we could save ourselves and be made righteous by fulfilling the requirements of The Law, Jesus would not have had to die. But all of us fall short of God’s holy standard (from Rom 3:23). Even if all of us try our very, very best to be good enough, we would still fall short. That’s why we need a Savior to die for us to pay the wages of sin (from Rom 6:23).
Hebrews 9:22 In fact, the law requires that nearly everything be cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.
Knowing all these in advance and the grave suffering that His purpose on earth would require (in anguish His sweat would be like drops of blood in Luke 22:44), Jesus who had a choice, chose the will of His Father. (Matt 26:3) Jesus in His human form, had to go through it. He Himself asked the Father, “My God, My God, Why have You forsaken me?” (Matt 27:46)
Cup Number 3 refers to the promise, “I will redeem you with an outstretched arm”, the very picture of Jesus’s Crucifixion.
Beth Moore says, “When you and I are going through a lot and we ask God to let that cup (of suffering) pass from us, the only way He will leave it in our hands is if it is absolutely crucial to what we’re doing on this planet.”
In her closing prayer, Beth says, “Not only is it Good News, it is Glad News…Good is something that has happened to me but Glad means I have gotten it… Until you receive it, you don’t realize what He has done for you… He has set us free from all the bondage and depravity and foolishness, every bad decision we’ve ever made… He has come to set us free…I’m glad… the past doesn’t have to be our future, God’s mercies are new every single morning, the evil one will not get the last say, our enemy will fall into the trap that he set for us, for all those who love God and are called and according to His purpose, everything is working out for our good, we have not outsinned Christ’s ability to forgive us, Christ will come back and He will claim His kingdom. And I am glad about that. There is a world coming where there will be no more…crying, no more sickness, no more death. And I am glad about that. And the last enemy Christ will slay is death. Psalm 126:3 says “The Lord has done great things for us and we are glad.”