Jesus’ Journey To The Cross: Part Three
Desiring the Kingdom – Luke 22:1-30
- Diabolical Desires and Unholy Alliances
“3 Then Satan entered Judas, called Iscariot, one of the Twelve.4 And Judas went to the chief priests and the officers of the temple guard and discussed with them how he might betray Jesus. 5 They were delighted and agreed to give him money.” – Luke 22:3-5
The irony of Jesus’ conflict with the religious leadership is that they think they are serving God’s purposes when in fact, they are serving diabolical ends, yet Jesus understands even this to be part of God’s good plans (see Lk 22:22).
“When the powers of evil do their worst, and crucify the one who brings God’s salvation, God uses that very event to defeat those powers.” – N.T. Wright
Serving Whose Purposes?
In serving their own interests both the religious leadership and Judas were actually serving not only their self-interest, but a diabolical one; the interest of God’s Enemy.
Contrast this with Peter and John. They are given clear instructions by Jesus to go and prepare the Passover meal (Lk7-13). Their obedience as those who serve offers us a picture, though incomplete, of what life under God’s rule will look like; people who obediently serve the interests of Jesus and others.
- Desiring the Kingdom
“I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I tell you, I will not eat it again until it finds fulfillment in the kingdom of God.” – Luke 22:15-16
A. Filling Full The Meaning of Passover
God rescued his people – Israel – from slavery in Egypt through miraculous means in what is called the exodus. In Luke 9:31 Jesus speaks with Moses and Elijah about his exodus, anticipating how his death will mean the ultimate rescue – the New Exodus – leading all who trust in him to salvation from sin and death.
B. The Meal That Calls Us To New Life…As Servants
Jesus is among his disciples as a lowly waiter of tables (22:27) – and so the definition of greatness is turned on its head! Leaders in God’s Kingdom will life this say way – where greatness is humble service to others!
Jesus’ Journey To The Cross – Part Three: Luke 22:1-30
Life Group Discussion Questions
1. In 1 Corinthians 5 Paul speaks of Jesus’ as the Passover Lamb who has been sacrificed and what that means for how we live (Paul is urging the church to disassociate with a man who is unrepentantly committing sexual sin, in hopes that he will turn back to God). Read 1 Corinthians 5:7-8.
a. What are the specific negative and positive responses to Jesus’ sacrifice that Paul calls this community to in these verses?
b. How can these negative elements erode the spiritual health and life of a church community? How do these positive elements build up and encourage the church community?
c. How does the sacrifice of Jesus on your behalf make you want to get rid of any malice and live with sincerity and truth in all your interactions?
2. In his message, Pastor Dave drew our attention to the reality that the religious leadership was “delighted” when Judas betrayed Jesus. They had ‘misread’ the purposes of God and had taken a turn toward violence. Jesus, on the other hand, had “eagerly desired” to eat this Passover meal with his disciples, where he explained how his death is the ultimate “fulfillment” of God’s saving purposes. This shows us that it is possible to misread what ‘appears’ to be God’s plans and what truly is.
a. In what areas of our current setting might it be easy to claim we are “on God’s page” and yet be completely missing the point?
b. How does looking closely at Jesus’ life and teaching (as recorded in the Bible) protect us from misreading what is truly good from what only appears to be? How do the teachings of Jesus address some of the issues raised in 2.a. above?
3. List the various ways that regularly participating in the physical act of eating the bread and drinking the cup (symbolizing Jesus’ broken body and shed blood) with other believers acts to strengthen our faith and community:
Which of these has been particularly helpful to you recently?
Prayer: Take some time to thanks Jesus together for making new life in him possible. Ask for strength to live with sincerity and truth, following the ways of Jesus, this week.