“And when they had taken their places and were eating, Jesus said, ‘Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me, one who is eating with me.’”
In his book, 24 Hours That Changed the World, Adam Hamilton reminds us that before Jesus and the disciples ever sat down to eat, he knew that Judas had already agreed to hand him over to the priests, that Peter would deny even knowing him, and that all the others would abandon him. Jesus knew all this, and yet he showed extraordinary grace toward them at the meal. Knowing Judas would betray him, Jesus still included him in the mail and even seated him to the left of him in the place of honor. Knowing Peter would deny him, Jesus washed Peter’s feet. Knowing that all would abandon him, he called them his friends and prayed for them. Amazing grace!
Have you ever played the part of Judas or Peter or other ten disciples by betraying, denying, or abandoning Jesus through what you have done or failed to do? Is there anyone who has betrayed, denied, abandoned or disappointed you that Jesus may be calling you to forgive and be gracious toward?
These are questions to consider as we journey with Jesus to the cross this Lenten season. It is not an easy journey, is it? Jesus did not promise the life of a disciple would be easy; in fact, he said it involved carrying our own cross.
I hope we will all persevere and continue our journey with Jesus despite its difficulties. Yes, the cross awaits us, but then so does resurrection and new life.
Hope to see you Sunday as we journey together,