Summary: This sermon examines the Last Supper in which Jesus institutes a "New Covenant" with His Disciples.
Introduction: If you knew that you were going to die tomorrow what would you want to do? Would you want to go somewhere that you’ve never been before, or see something that you’ve never seen before?
If you knew that you only had a few hours to live who would you want to talk to? Who would you want to spend time with? Would you want to talk to the President or go see an old friend that you haven’t seen since college? Or perhaps you would just like to spend a relaxing evening at home with your family.
This morning I want us to spend a few minutes talking about how Jesus chose to spend the last few hours of his life. You see, Jesus realized that His life on earth was quickly coming to an end. He didn’t choose to do something that He had never done before, or talk to someone that He had never met. Instead He chose to do something that He had done several times. He chose observe the Passover with His Disciples. If you have you Bibles follow along as I (Read Matthew 26:17-30)
MT 26:17 On the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the disciples came to Jesus and asked, "Where do you want us to make preparations for you to eat the Passover?"
MT 26:18 He replied, "Go into the city to a certain man and tell him, `The Teacher says: My appointed time is near. I am going to celebrate the Passover with my disciples at your house.’ "
MT 26:19 So the disciples did as Jesus had directed them and prepared the Passover.
MT 26:20 When evening came, Jesus was reclining at the table with the Twelve.
MT 26:21 And while they were eating, he said, "I tell you the truth, one of you will betray me."
MT 26:22 They were very sad and began to say to him one after the other, "Surely not I, Lord?"
MT 26:23 Jesus replied, "The one who has dipped his hand into the bowl with me will betray me.
MT 26:24 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."
MT 26:25 Then Judas, the one who would betray him, said, "Surely not I, Rabbi?" Jesus answered, "Yes, it is you."
MT 26:26 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, "Take and eat; this is my body."
MT 26:27 Then he took the cup, gave thanks and offered it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you.
MT 26:28 This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.
MT 26:29 I tell you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it anew with you in my Father’s kingdom."
MT 26:30 When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.
There are four things I want to point out to you about the Last Passover meal that Jesus shared with His Disciples and how we can apply them to the Lord’s Supper that we are going to share with one another this morning. The first thing I want you to Notice is:
I. THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING PREPARED. (17-19)
It’s good to be prepared! Whether you’re talking about being prepared for your final exam; or being prepared for company to come over, or being prepared to pay your taxes.
The Passover meal was observed at sunset on the 13th day of Nisan, which is (April 14th) according to our Calendar.
Passover is one of the most important religious festivals of the year for the Jews. It reminds the Israelites of the fact that God delivered them from Slavery in Egypt. You remember the Story. Moses went to Pharaoh and told Him that God wanted him to let the Israelites leave. Pharaoh refused and as a result God sent a series of plagues upon Egypt. The last of which was the death of their firstborn sons. In order to keep their sons from being killed, God told the Israelites to do something very specific. They were to slaughter and eat a spotless lamb and place some of its blood on the doorframes of their homes. When the Angel of death passed by, He would see the blood and pass over their home. God made this a lasting ordinance which was to be celebrated every year to remind the Israelites of how He had delivered them out of slavery in Egypt. And of course it is still observed by Jews today.