The Passion of the Lord
Gospel Reading: Luke 22:14—23:56
Jesus eats the Passover meal with his disciples, telling them during the meal that this is his last meal with them. He tells them that his body is going to be broken and his blood shed for them. Then he leads them all to Gethsemane where, knowing what is coming, he prays to his Father. From there, a posse led by Judas nabs him and takes him for a sort of mock trial, wherein the space of a few hours he is condemned to death, mocked, scourged, and executed.
Almost every person who encounters Jesus misunderstands what is happening. Eleven of his disciples argue among themselves about which of them is the greatest. The twelfth disciple, Judas—who was there at the institution of the Eucharist and so is covered by Jesus’ body and blood—somehow still thinks that he is right to turn him over to the authorities for arrest. The Roman soldiers who arrest him think they are arresting a criminal. Then the eleven disciples decide that a battle is breaking out and they need to fight for Jesus with swords. The chief priests think Jesus is a charlatan who is leading the people away from their correct laws. Pontius Pilate thinks he is an innocent fool. Herod thinks he is something of a magician. The onlookers think he is a fake who has set himself up as a prophet. Only the one thief understands that although Jesus is dying, his kingdom is still intact and available. And he asks to be admitted. And the centurion who witnesses his death realizes that there is more here than meets the eye…
Question: What do my thoughts and actions say about how I understand Jesus?