The Twenty-Seventh Sunday of Ordinary Time

Luke 22:14-16, 24-30

This World Is Such a Small Fry to Fight Over

Jesus and his disciples are now in the “upper room” where that most holy of meals is about to be established.  But one may ask, “But it had already been established fourteen-hundred years before in the miraculous event of the Passover and deliverance of the Israelites from slavery.”  Yes, but here it is re-established and re-instituted as the Lamb of God, who was foreshadowed in the Passover lamb, was soon to fulfill all that was written in the Law and the Prophets, the Old Testament, which is all about him on every page.

And so it is fitting that Jesus says, “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer.”  Of course.  His time is at hand.  Soon it will be finished.  And here he is gathered with the men he has loved and poured his life into for three years for one last meal together.  And he adds, “For I tell you I will not eat it [again] until it is fulfilled in the Kingdom of God.”  This saying of Jesus speaks to the forward-looking aspect of the Supper.  1 Corinthians 11:26 tells us that as often as we partake of the Supper, we proclaim our Lord’s death until he comes.  Thus, the Supper teaches us to not only look back at his sacrifice, but forward to his return.

As I am following A. T. Robertson’s rendition of the events, the next passage that comes relates the dispute among the disciples about which of them was the greatest.  It seems so out of character with that most holy institution that I like to think, like Robertson, that this dispute arose before the Supper rather than after.  We’ve seen this before (9:46-48; Mark 9:33-37).  This time Jesus compares such struggles with the Gentiles (i.e., pagans) who lord it over one another.  Jesus’ disciples are to be servants, not masters.  And when they are masters, they are still to be servant-leaders.

But it’s what he says afterwards that strikes me.  He tells them that they had been with him through all of his trials, AND that they would be assigned a Kingdom where they would eat and drink at Jesus’ table and reign with him.  So the question comes: Why are you discussing such matters as who the greatest is in this earthly realm?  Pagans fight over this world because it’s all they have.  Unbelievers must make earth a heaven because they care not for the real one.  And their heaven is centered around their own selfish desires no matter how noble they make them sound.  Christians refuse to fight over the things of this world; after all, they’re so insignificant compared to the Kingdom which we shall one day rule at the side of our Lord.  Let the pagans rule over this kingdom under Satan (Ephesians 2:2).  We’ll follow Christ.

Author: The Reformed Baptist

My name is Stephen Taylor, ordained Baptist minister of eighteen years pastoral experience with a Ph.D. in Historical Theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. Better than that, I am married to a godly woman, Karla, who has been very patient with me since 1989. I have two daughters, both of whom I homeschooled for extended periods of time, who became godly young women, and who ran off and married godly young men, all of which is very proper. The oldest daughter has even seen fit to bless me with a grandson and a granddaughter, and my youngest daughter with a grandson, all three of whom are bundles of exceeding joy. As you can see, I am quite blessed. This website is dedicated to helping people grow in the wisdom and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ through the gift of writing that the Lord has given to me. It is specifically about helping His people grow in godliness, the theme you see repeated above. I write devotions with this aim and hope that they might be of some help to God’s people. Full disclosure: I am of a Reformed bent, meaning that my understanding of Scripture is primarily informed by the Reformers and their successors of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. However, as a student of church history and theology, I strive to remain true to that teaching handed down once for all unto the saints through every age of the Church. I like to think of myself as a “catholic” Christian, as the Reformers thought of themselves. At any rate, feel free to read, pray, and contact me if you wish, or correct me if need be. As you can see, I tend to follow the church year. Of course, I make no special claims about these devotions. I know very well that others have written better and plumbed the depths of God’s word with greater insight. But if my musings help someone draw closer to the Lord, well then, I have my reward. Blessings to you and may the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ speak to you that word which He knows you especially need to hear. Grace & peace, Stephen Taylor

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