It was the last supper that Jesus had with his disciple’s before his death, before the Passover,
And He knew his time was coming. He knew he would be leaving. He knew that the dawn of his death had come. He knew he was going to leave his disciples to go and be with his father. In this case and like many before it, he ate dinner with his disciples. But, this one, this dinner, this supper was special. Jesus was always eating and hanging out with tax collectors and sinners from all walks of life. This is one of the criticisms that the religious world had against him.
“Look at him, if he is so holy why is he eating and drinking with the unclean, the sinners. Why is he hobnobbing with people w that we have no respect for—people that are not religious from our point of view. He’s eating and drinking with people that could care less about religion. He is hanging out with tax collectors who have a history of being thieves and robbers, and agents for Rome, puppets of Rome”.
He’s eating with people that don’t even go to the synagogues to worship. That was one of the things that Jesus was known for. But, Jesus was also known for one other thing. He was known for his abundant love. He not only ate with people, but he loved them. He loved them dearly.
And, this is the last supper where he is sitting with his disciples and he says, “I have loved my disciples from the very beginning and will love them to the very end”.
After supper, Jesus knowing that all things had been given into his hand…That’s one thing about being put into a position of authority and knowing you are in authority. People recognize someone that has authority, whether they have a title or not. Jesus knew he was a person of authority. He was comfortable with his position. But, he wanted to teach his disciples something. He did not lord his position over them. He did not do as the Romans or as the religious leaders of the day did who lorded over their subjects. “Jesus said the first will be last and the last will be first”.
So he takes a towel and starts washing his disciple’s feet. And, he comes to Peter, and Peter says: You are not going to wash my feet Jesus!” Jesus says that if I don’t wash your feet, you won’t be clean. “Well, then wash my hands and wash my head too!” “All I have to do is wash your feet. Just because your body is clean doesn’t mean you’re clean”.
There’s a different kind of cleansing going on here. There’s a cleansing of the heart. I’m washing your feet because I am teaching you about true spiritual leadership. “The son of man did not come to be served but to serve, and to give his life for the many.’
“And, I am doing this for an example…because, I love you. I love every one of you. I even love the one who is going to betray me. And, I’m going to wash his feet too. There is betrayal already in his heart, but I love him and I love you all”. This is how the world will know us as followers of Christ. It is by our love for one another. Those outside of the church are not going to know you as a Christian just because you go to church. That’s a good thing, but that’s not enough to convince anyone of your faith. They are not going to see Christ in you because you are religious. They are not going to see Christ in you because you do religious things.
They are not going to see Christ in you because you don’t party hard or refuse to hang out with those that do. That’s probably a good thing too, but that’s not going to convince anybody of your love for Jesus Christ.
They will recognize you as a Christian by your love…The love that you have for one another. This is the mark of a Christian’s life. This is the mark of a Christian.
It’s not the cross you hang around your neck. That’s a symbol and nothing wrong with symbols. It’s not your commitment to come to worship God in this church. That’s also a good sign, but that’s not how they will recognize Christ in you.
It’s the love that you have for your brothers and sisters. And, this is the love that Jesus shares. And, he says, “I will love you, I will love you, until the very end and throughout eternity”.
The Last Supper is just the beginning.