The Lord Jesus Christ celebrated the Passover with His disciples on the night when He would be betrayed. He took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to His disciples, saying, "Take and eat; this is My body." Then He took the cup, gave thanks and offered it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you. This is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins (Matthew 26:26-28).
He grew troubled in spirit and said in agony: “One of you will betray me” (John 13:21). Time was soon passing by and He knew that within a couple of hours He would be betrayed by His disciple Judas. He secluded with three of His disciples into the Garden of Gethsemane to pray. There He told them to keep watch and pray.
He foreknew the pain, agony and humiliation that He would suffer for mankind and travailed in prayer saying, “O My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will" (Matthew 26:39). In His agony, His sweat became great drops of blood and fell to the ground. He sought strength in prayer before the ordeal to the cross would begin. When He returned to His disciples, He found them weary with sleep. He sought His disciples to uphold Him in prayer but they failed to keep watch and pray with Him.
Many years ago, emperor Napoleon was captured by the enemy soldiers and put in solitary confinement in a small island. In course of time, his body began to show signs of gradual swelling. He complained of this to his supervisor saying, “Officer, I have an inkling that someone is trying to kill me by administering poison in my food! Please help me!” A doctor was asked to probe into the matter. After examination, the doctor recorded his medical opinion: “No one is mixing poison with his food.” But there was indeed a person who mixed small doses of poison with Napoleon’s food! Fully aware of the fact that he was being poisoned to death, Napoleon died shedding tears and lamenting, “Alas! They are poisoning me to death! There is no one to save me!”
Dearly beloved! Unlike Napoleon, the Lord Jesus Christ drew strength from prayer which enabled Him to endure the sufferings for the sake of mankind.
The Bible says, “Whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until He comes” (1 Corinthians 11:26). We partake in the Holy Communion to remember the supreme sacrifice of the Lord Jesus; His body was broken for us and His blood was shed for us. Only because of His sacrifice on the Cross, we have access to God’s blessings.
Loving Lord Jesus,
You endured sufferings for our sake on the Cross. Your body was broken for us and Your blood was shed for us. I remember Your supreme sacrifice and thank You for the same. I place my faith in You, my Saviour. Let all the blessings of the Cross come into my life.
In Your matchless name I pray.