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Meals with Jesus
The Last Supper




Meals with Jesus




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The Last Supper
A Contemplative Meditation for Holy Week 


Bible Reading - Taken From Mark 14, Luke 22, John 13 (MSG)  

After sunset, Jesus came with the apostles. After they all sat down Jesus said, "You've no idea how much I have looked forward to eating this Passover meal with you before I enter my time of suffering." As they were eating, Jesus became visibly upset, and then he told them why. "I have something hard but important to say to you: One of you is going to hand me over to the conspirators, one who at this moment is eating with me." The disciples immediately became suspicious of each other, wondering who might be about to do this. One of the disciples was reclining against Jesus, his head on his shoulder. Peter motioned to him to ask who Jesus might be talking about. So, being the closest, he said, "Master, who?" Jesus said, "The one to whom I give this crust of bread, after I've dipped it." Then he dipped the crust and gave it to Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot. "What you must do," said Jesus, "do. Do it and get it over with." No one around the supper table knew why he said this to him. Judas, with the piece of bread, left. In the course of their meal, having taken and blessed the bread, Jesus broke it and gave it to them saying, "This is my body, given for you. Eat it in my memory." He did the same with the cup after supper, saying, "This is my blood, God's new covenant, poured out for many people. I'll not be drinking wine again until the new day when I drink it in the Kingdom of God." They sang a hymn then went directly to the Mount of Olives. It was night.  


Meditation

Make sure you are sitting comfortably on your chair. Be aware of the chair supporting you. Be aware of the ground supporting your feet. Relax and let the tension drain away. Put aside your worries. Be aware of the stillness and peace here. Listen to the silence. Feel yourself breathing in and out . . .  

In your mind you open your eyes. You are looking out of an upstairs window. The sky is dark. A full moon hangs just above the horizon. 

You turn around and see that you are in a large room. It has plain whitewashed walls. Several people are putting the finishing touches to tables laid for a meal. 

You hear voices. Jesus and his friends are climbing up the stairs and coming into the room.  

Women carrying steaming pots of food and baskets of hot bread follow them into the room. They put the food on the tables and call to everyone to sit down and eat, before the food gets cold. 

Look around you, what do you see? Who do you see? What do you do? 

When everyone is sitting, Jesus says "Thank you all for joining me here tonight. I've been looking forward to eating this Passover meal with you all, before I enter my time of suffering." Then He thanks God for the food, and everyone begins eating. 

People start talking. Can you hear what they're saying? What do you do? 

Jesus stands up, takes a large piece of bread from the basket in front of him, and thanks God for it. Conversation stops as he breaks it in two, passes a piece to the person next to him and says "Go on, please, take it. Eat some and pass it on. This is like my body that will be broken for you all. Remember me next time you eat like this." Everyone looks confused, but they eat some bread and pass it on. 

The bread gets to you. What do you do? What are you thinking? What are you feeling? 

When the bread gets back round to Jesus, He sits down again.  

last supper

People start eating and talking again. Can you hear what they're saying? Look around you, what do you see? What do you do? 

After a while, Jesus holds up a hand for silence. He looks sad. He says "I have something hard but important to say to you. One of you is going to hand me over to the people who are conspiring against me". There is stunned silence. Then the questions begin.  

Can you hear what they're saying ? What do you do? What are you thinking? What are you feeling? 

Jesus has a piece of bread in his hand, and is talking quietly to John. He dips it in the food and gives it to Judas. It's hard to hear but did Jesus say "Do what you must. Do it and get it over with"? Judas says nothing. Still holding the piece of bread he leaves the room. You look around, but no-one else seems to notice him go. 

After a while the questions trail off. In the silence, Jesus stands and picks up a cup of wine. He fills it up, thanks God for it, passes it to the person next to him, and says "Go on, please, take it. Drink some and pass it on. This is like my blood that will be poured out for you all. Remember me next time you drink like this. This is the beginning of a new covenant with God". Everyone looks confused, but they drink some wine and pass it on. 

The wine gets to you. What do you do? What are you thinking? What are you feeling? 

When cup gets back round to Jesus, He looks at His friends and says "It's time I was going, will you come with me?" Several people stand up and leave the room, but Jesus walks over to you. What does he say to you? What do you say ?  

When you have finished talking, Jesus goes down the stairs and out into the night. 

What are you thinking ? What are you feeling ? What do you do ?  


Ruth Gillett, April 2017


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