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Use a poem to prepare for Easter

April 13, 2022

Daily Scripture

Luke 21:29 – 22:30

During Lent, we are using short videos to share a daily idea (linked to the gospel of Luke) on how to grow spiritually. Watch today’s video. Click here or on the image below:


Note: We are reading the entire gospel of Luke in the GPS. Some day’s readings are longer than usual. We hope you’ll have an extra cup of coffee, or use your lunch break, and read Luke’s entire story of Jesus.

Amid betrayal and contention, Jesus remained confident Luke 21:29 – 22:30

29 Jesus told them a parable: “Look at the fig tree and all the trees. 30 When they sprout leaves, you can see for yourselves and know that summer is near. 31 In the same way, when you see these things happening, you know that God’s kingdom is near. 32 I assure you that this generation won’t pass away until everything has happened. 33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will certainly not pass away.

34 “Take care that your hearts aren’t dulled by drinking parties, drunkenness, and the anxieties of day-to-day life. Don’t let that day fall upon you unexpectedly, 35 like a trap. It will come upon everyone who lives on the face of the whole earth. 36 Stay alert at all times, praying that you are strong enough to escape everything that is about to happen and to stand before the Human One [or Son of Man].”

37 Every day Jesus was teaching in the temple, but he spent each night on the Mount of Olives. 38 All the people rose early in the morning to hear him in the temple area.

22:1 The Festival of Unleavened Bread, which is called Passover, was approaching. 2 The chief priests and the legal experts were looking for a way to kill Jesus, because they were afraid of the people. 3 Then Satan entered Judas, called Iscariot, who was one of the Twelve. 4 He went out and discussed with the chief priests and the officers of the temple guard how he could hand Jesus over to them. 5 They were delighted and arranged payment for him. 6 He agreed and began looking for an opportunity to hand Jesus over to them—a time when the crowds would be absent.

7 The Day of Unleavened Bread arrived, when the Passover had to be sacrificed. 8 Jesus sent Peter and John with this task: “Go and prepare for us to eat the Passover meal.”

9 They said to him, “Where do you want us to prepare it?”

10 Jesus replied, “When you go into the city, a man carrying a water jar will meet you. Follow him to the house he enters. 11 Say to the owner of the house, ‘The teacher says to you, “Where is the guestroom where I can eat the Passover meal with my disciples?” ’ 12 He will show you a large upstairs room, already furnished. Make preparations there.” 13 They went and found everything just as he had told them, and they prepared the Passover meal.

14 When the time came, Jesus took his place at the table, and the apostles joined him. 15 He said to them, “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. 16 I tell you, I won’t eat it until it is fulfilled in God’s kingdom.” 17 After taking a cup and giving thanks, he said, “Take this and share it among yourselves. 18 I tell you that from now on I won’t drink from the fruit of the vine until God’s kingdom has come.” 19 After taking the bread and giving thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” 20 In the same way, he took the cup after the meal and said, “This cup is the new covenant by my blood, which is poured out for you.

21 “But look! My betrayer is with me; his hand is on this table. 22 The Human One [or Son of Man] goes just as it has been determined. But how terrible it is for that person who betrays him.” 23 They began to argue among themselves about which of them it could possibly be who would do this.

24 An argument broke out among the disciples over which one of them should be regarded as the greatest.

25 But Jesus said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles rule over their subjects, and those in authority over them are called ‘friends of the people.’ 26 But that’s not the way it will be with you. Instead, the greatest among you must become like a person of lower status and the leader like a servant. 27 So which one is greater, the one who is seated at the table or the one who serves at the table? Isn’t it the one who is seated at the table? But I am among you as one who serves. 28 “You are the ones who have continued with me in my trials. 29 And I confer royal power on you just as my Father granted royal power to me. 30 Thus you will eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and you will sit on thrones overseeing the twelve tribes of Israel.

Daily Reflection & Prayer

The annual weeklong Festival of Unleavened Bread, with the Passover meal, reminded Hebrews of their defining story: God rescuing them from Egypt (cf. Exodus 12:1-18). Jesus shared the Passover meal with his disciples. With the cross just ahead, Jesus said for them the bread and wine would point to his even greater act of giving himself to rescue us from sin and death.

  • Jesus said, “The kings of the Gentiles rule over their subjects, and those in authority over them are called ‘friends of the people.’” But in God’s kingdom, Jesus said, “That’s not the way it will be with you….the greatest among you must become…like a servant.” Where do you have power (parent, boss, teacher, pastor, public office, etc.)? How can you use your power to serve others?
  • Jesus’ shift of Passover into the Lord’s Supper didn’t just look back, but also pointed forward. Scholar Richard Vinson noted that “until it is fulfilled” (verse 16) “is a promise to Luke’s readers that the kingdom truly will come.” * Do you trust that God’s promises offer a future you can count on? How can taking part in Communion (even online) reinforce your trust and hope?

Click here to incorporate music and worship from the COR Worship Collective into your daily practice and devotion.


Living Lord, I rejoice in your saving acts in the past. But even more, I eagerly look forward to the day when you fully establish your kingdom. Keep me faithfully on track until that day. Amen.

GPS Insights

Picture of Dr. Amy Oden

Dr. Amy Oden

Dr. Amy Oden is Professor of Early Church History and Spirituality, teaching at several seminaries. Teaching is her calling, and she looks forward to every day with students. Her latest book (Right Here, Right Now: The Practice of Christian Mindfulness, Abingdon Press, 2017) traces ancient mindfulness practice for Christians today.

What if we thought of our faith lives as comprised primarily of eating meals together? What if sharing a meal around the table was our primary way of worship and witness?

In this passage from Luke, in the last week of Jesus’ life, this is exactly what Jesus seems to tell us. “Do this in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19-20).

Gathering around a table sharing food is basic to all human life. We need it to survive. At meals, we know ourselves to be finite creatures in need of sustenance. At meals, we take in nourishment until, eventually, we will have to eat again. We always return to this primary human need, shared by all human beings.

And maybe Jesus knows that we need table fellowship for community, too. Jesus shows us that this fundamental act of sharing life together is the way we become the body of Christ. In addition to physical food, we need the nourishment of one another, connecting our lives into something bigger, truer, where we are fed the Bread of Life. For, Jesus says, the meal is the new covenant of love, beyond the covenant of law.

For sure, I don’t think Jesus is saying that meals are the only component of discipleship. But when we are tempted to make certain beliefs, forms of activism or worship styles the litmus test of our faith, “Do this in remembrance of me” can be a helpful reminder.

Today, enjoy a meal, a cup of coffee or a glass of wine, with others. Do this in remembrance of Jesus’ invitation to love.

© 2024 Resurrection: A United Methodist Church. All Rights Reserved.
Scripture quotations are taken from The Common English Bible ©2011. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

* Richard B. Vinson, study note on Luke 22:16 in The CEB Study Bible. Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2013, p. 157NT.