Day 5: Holy Thursday
The Last Supper or observance of Passover at the Upper Room (see Matthew 26:17-30; Mark 14:12-26; Luke 22:7-23; John 13:1-35):
- Preparation of the Passover meal—the Lord Jesus sent out two of His disciples, Peter and John, to make preparation for Passover meal (Matthew 26:17-19; Mark 14:12-16; Luke 22:7-13).
- After sunset (the time in the evening at which the sun begins to fall below the horizon), the Lord Jesus celebrates the Passover with His disciples (Matthew 26:20; Mark 14:17; Luke 22:14-16).
- During this time of Supper, He stood up, laid aside His robe, took a towel, poured water into a basin and washes the disciple’s feet (John 13:1-20).
- During the Supper, the Lord Jesus also identified His betrayer—Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve disciples (see Matthew 26:21-25; Mark 14:18-21; Luke 22:21-23; John 13:21-30).
- There was also contention among the disciples over greatness—the dissension was for choice positions in the coming kingdom. So Jesus reminded them that faithful service in a lowly place demonstrates true greatness. He promised them that they would enjoy a position of prominence in the coming messianic banquet with Him (Luke 22:24-30).
- The Lord Jesus predicts that Peter will deny Him (see Luke 22:31-38; John 13:36-38).
- The conclusion of the meal—Jesus institutes the Lord’s Supper (see Matthew 26:26-30; Mark 14:22-26; Luke 22:14-23; cf. 1 Corinthians 11:23-26).
Jesus farewell discourses (see John 14:1-17:26):
- He comforted His disciples as He prepares for His departure—Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:1-15).
- He promises the Comforter (Holy Spirit) who would encourage, strengthen, and aid not only His disciples, but all believers (John 14:16-31).
- He explains the cause of a disciple’s fruit-bearing or fruitfulness by using the metaphor of the vine and its branches. He Himself is the vine and the branches are all those who claim to be His followers. The fruitful branches are true believers who by their living in union with Him, obeying Him, and following His commandments produce much fruit (see John 15:1-8).
- He commands all His followers to abide in love (John 15:9-17).
- He warned His disciples to prepare for persecution or opposition from the world, taught them how to relate to their enemies, and reiterates that the Spirit (the Helper) would come to enable them witness to Him despite hardship and persecution (John 15:18–16:4).
- He explained to His disciples about the necessity of His going away—that is, the benefits of His departure (John 16:5-7), and the coming and ministry of the Holy Spirit—that is, the work of the Holy Spirit (see John 16:8-15).
- He speaks of His death, resurrection, and second advent to His disciples—predicting that their sorrow will turn to joy—that is, joy over His resurrection (John 16:16-22).
- He promised answered prayer and to give peace during the times of tribulation, for He has overcome the world (John 16:23-33).
- He made an intercessory prayer for Himself, for the twelve disciples, and for the coming generations of believers (John 17:1-26).
After all these sayings, the Lord Jesus moved to the location of the Mount of Olives with His disciples, warned them about forsaking Him during temptation, and predicted Peter’s denial for the second time (Matthew 26:30-35; Mark 14:26-31; Luke 22:39-40; John 18:1).
He again moved to the location of Gethsemane, and there in the garden, He prayed earnestly in agony before His betrayal and arrest (see Matthew 26:36-46; Mark 14:32-42; Luke 22:40-46; John 18:1).
While the Lord Jesus was in the garden with His disciples, Judas Iscariot appeared leading a mob of Roman soldiers, Temple police, and representatives of the Jewish leaders determined to arrest Jesus. He then betrayed Jesus by stepping forward to identify Jesus to the authorities with a kiss. Immediately, the Lord Jesus was arrested and bound, and all the disciples forsook Him and fled (see Matthew 26:47-56; Mark 14:43-52; Luke 22:47-53; John 18:2-11).
The trial of the Lord Jesus Christ began this very day—at night time:
- First, He was bound and led away to face the powerful ex-high priest Annas, to determine indictment—that is, what to charge Him for (John 18:12-23).
- Second, He was ordered by Annas to be cuffed and sent away to face Caiaphas (the ruling high priest) and the Sanhedrin (Council), in order to gather evidence for the full high council hearing to follow (see Matthew 26:57-66; Mark 14:53-64; Luke 22:54; John 18:24).
- During these illegal trials, the Lord Jesus was mocked and beaten—verbally and physically abused by the soldiers who held Him (Matthew 26:67; Mark 14:65; Luke 22:63-65).
- He was also denied by Peter three times before the cock crowed in the morning (Matthew 26:69-75; Mark 14:66-72; Luke 22:55-62; John 18:25-27) as predicted by the Lord Jesus Himself (see Matthew 26:34; John 13:38).
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