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04 — Passover

artwork created by Zoe Palmateer

04 — Passover

When: Thursday
Location: Jerusalem

Read: Exodus 11-12; Matthew 26:17-35; Mark 14:12-31; Luke 22:7-38; John 13:1-14:30

Thursday is a significant day in Passion Week. We see Thursday's events begin with the disciples preparing for Passover by searching for a place where Jesus and the disciples can have this significant meal. This feast was celebrated every year in Jewish culture to remember the original "passing over" when Moses was leading the Israelites out of Egypt. We see the Old Testament origin story in Exodus 11-12; after calling down 9 other plagues on the people of Egypt to convince Pharaoh to let God's people go, the last and final plague would bring the Angel of Death to kill the firstborn of every home. Yet there was a way to be spared; every home that painted the blood of a sacrificial lamb on its doorpost would be saved.

This Passover was significant because it would soon point to an even greater event than that of the Exodus: the death of the ultimate Passover Lamb, Jesus the Messiah, who would redeem us and save us from our sin and death. Going forward, Jesus tells his disciples that passover meal would turn into what we now know as "The Lord's Supper" or "Communion" in Matthew 26:26-29.

After the Passover meal, Jesus washes his disciples' feet; giving the example and teaching that true leaders are those that humble themselves and serve others. After washing all twelve disciples' feet, he identifies Judas as his betrayer. Think about that- that means he even washed Judas' feet, knowing full well that Judas was about to betray him. After Judas leaves, Jesus gives his disciples a final discourse on what it means to be a disciple, words that challenge and inspire us still today as his modern day disciples (John 14:1-30).
After singing a hymn, they conclude their Passover celebration and depart the upper room to make their way to Gethsemane.

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