Guilty Hands

Passion/Palm Sunday
Scripture: St. Luke 22:14-23

Jesus did not wait until the last moment to make plans for future actions. He told His disciples to go into the city to make preparations for the Passover celebration.

Passover is an ancient Jewish celebration. For the blood of the lamb was shed for the remission of the sins of the people.

He had asked a friend to make plans for the final meal with His disciples at Passover. He told them to go into the city and find a man carrying a water pot on his head. “When you find him, ask him where the upper room is being prepared for Jesus and us and follow him there. Now, most houses were a single-level, one-room house. If there was a second storey, the second room was smaller than the first and could only be reached by an outside staircase.

Jesus’ preplanning was due to the city being overcrowded with the crowds coming for Passover celebration.

As they gathered for the supper meal, Jesus used the ancient symbols to give it a new meaning. He said of the bread, “This is my body.” Here is exactly what is meant by a sacrament.

See, a sacrament is something usually an ordinary item that has acquired a special meaning far beyond itself. There’s nothing especially theological or mysterious about these objects. Every household has a drawer full of items that can only be called junk, yet we will not throw any of the items away. They have special meaning for us, and from time to time we want to touch them and hold them in our hands, because they remind us of a past joy and fond memories of a special friend or parted loved one. They are common things because they have a special meaning far beyond their worth. That is what a sacrament is.

Jesus took the cup after supper and said, “This cup is a new covenant, made at the cost of my spilled blood.” In a biblical sense, a covenant is a relationship between man and God. God graciously approached man, wherein as man promises to keep and obey God’s laws. (Exodus 24:1-8)

All the Jewish sacrifices were designed to restore a relationship broken by man, which was to be redeemed by God to be perfect once again.

It is here that Jesus was and still is saying, “by My life and by My blood…

“I have made it possible for you to have a new relationship between yourself and God the Father.”

We are all sinners; that is true. But because we have acknowledged that Jesus has died for our sins and God the Father is no longer our enemy; rather, He is a precious friend. Jesus died knowing how easily a human can slip into the pitfalls of sin, forgetting that the Father loves him and will forgive him if he confesses his sin by the cleansing blood of His precious Son, Jesus Christ.

All sin is wiped away, granting us a new, abundant, and eternal life. It is through the tragic death of Jesus and His blessed resurrection from the dead that we who are traitors can emerge from our sinful nature and become the sons and daughters of a loving God. Once our hands were guilty of sin, causing our spiritual deaths, but the blood of Jesus Christ cleansed them, making them white as snow.

Let us pray!