Part XIII of our series on Preparation
In our last post we talked about how the Lord’s Supper is extraordinary for many reasons, not the least of which is that in it we see Jesus delivering all ten of the Works of Mercy to humanity.
At the end of that post, I gave you a homework challenge: identify each of the Works of Mercy in the Lord’s Supper story, from the supper on through the crucifixion.
How’d you do?
There can certainly be more than one right answer, but let me at least share my list with you to stimulate your further search.
- Does good to his enemies:
- Jesus washes the feet of and fed even Judas, who Jesus knows will betray him (John 6:70, ESV: “Jesus answered them, “Did I not choose you, the Twelve? And yet one of you is a devil.”)
- Shares his bread:
- This happens in the communion meal itself.
- Opens his home:
- Through the upper room, and also in John 14:2-4 when he says, “My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.”
- Visits and remembers:
- See 1 Peter 3:19-20 (NIV): “After being made alive, he went and made proclamation to the imprisoned spirits— to those who were disobedient long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built.”
- Also Jesus visits the three sleeping disciples in the garden (Matthew 26:40).
- Heals and comforts our bodies:
- Luke 22:49-51 (NIV): “When Jesus’ followers saw what was going to happen, they said, ‘Lord, should we strike with our swords?’ And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear. But Jesus answered, ‘No more of this!’ And he touched the man’s ear and healed him.”
- Proclaims the Gospel:
- His words throughout this whole section of Scripture are the Gospel. Note especially Luke 22:22 (NIV): “The Son of Man will go as it has been decreed” and Matthew 27:62-64 (NIV), “The next day, the one after Preparation Day, the chief priests and the Pharisees went to Pilate. ‘Sir,’ they said, ‘we remember that while he was still alive that deceiver said, “After three days I will rise again.” So give the order for the tomb to be made secure until the third day. Otherwise, his disciples may come and steal the body and tell the people that he has been raised from the dead.’”
- Forgives and reconciles:
- Matthew 26:28 (NIV): “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.”
- Makes disciples:
- John 13:12-15 (NIV): “When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. ‘Do you understand what I have done for you?’ he asked them. ‘You call me “Teacher” and “Lord,” and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.’”
- Ransoms our bodies from captivity:
- Matthew 20:28 (NIV): “just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
- Reigns over creation
- John 12:32 (NIV): “But I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself.”
Remember this as our month of Preparation draws to a close and we get ready to begin next week (and next year) to hear and do each of the Works of Mercy, starting with Doing Good:
Before we do unto others, let us always first hear how God in Christ has done unto us.