The God who gave us life, gave us liberty at the same time.
American lawyer, politician, 3rd President of the United States, and Virginian, Thomas Jefferson, was born on this day in 1743 (died 1826).
Centuries earlier on a similar Thursday evening Jesus was partaking of the Passover meal with his disciples. His words and actions were strange to them as he washed their feet and spoke of his body and blood.
Judas fidgeted as he waited for the right time to leave.
When evening came, Jesus was reclining at the table with the Twelve. And while they were eating, he said, “Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me.”
They were very sad and began to say to him one after the other, “Surely you don’t mean me, Lord?”
Jesus replied, “The one who has dipped his hand into the bowl with me will betray me. The Son of Man will go just as it is written about him. But woe to that man who betrays the Son of Man! It would be better for him if he had not been born.”
Then Judas, the one who would betray him, said, “Surely you don’t mean me, Rabbi?”
Jesus answered, “You have said so.”
While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.”
Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you, I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”
When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.
Jesus went into the garden to pray, the disciples with him fell asleep while they waited.
My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one— I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.
Then the guards arrived to take him away.
Judas betrayed him with a kiss.
Jesus was taken to Pilate, then to Herod, and then back to Pilate who pronounced the sentence before symbolically washing his hands. Jesus was beaten, abused, and mocked.
He was human, but he was also God. He could have stopped this at any time.
The plan was in place. The plan for our redemption.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
Tomorrow would be the darkest day.