Past Issues

Jesus -- the Messiah #28

Read Mark 14:1-51.

Jesus Anointed at Bethany

1 Now the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread were only two days away, and the chief priests and the teachers of the law were looking for some sly way to arrest Jesus and kill him. 2 “But not during the Feast,” they said, “or the people may riot.”

3 While he was in Bethany, reclining at the table in the home of a man known as Simon the Leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on his head.

4 Some of those present were saying indignantly to one another, “Why this waste of perfume? 5 It could have been sold for more than a year’s wages and the money given to the poor.” And they rebuked her harshly.

6 “Leave her alone,” said Jesus. “Why are you bothering her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. 7 The poor you will always have with you, and you can help them any time you want. But you will not always have me. 8 She did what she could. She poured perfume on my body beforehand to prepare for my burial. 9 I tell you the truth, wherever the gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”

10 Then Judas Iscariot, one of the Twelve, went to the chief priests to betray Jesus to them. 11 They were delighted to hear this and promised to give him money. So he watched for an opportunity to hand him over.

The Lord’s Supper

12 On the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, when it was customary to sacrifice the Passover lamb, Jesus’ disciples asked him, “Where do you want us to go and make preparations for you to eat the Passover?”

13 So he sent two of his disciples, telling them, “Go into the city, and a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him. 14 Say to the owner of the house he enters, ‘The Teacher asks: Where is my guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?’ 15 He will show you a large upper room, furnished and ready. Make preparations for us there.”

16 The disciples left, went into the city and found things just as Jesus had told them. So they prepared the Passover.

17 When evening came, Jesus arrived with the Twelve. 18 While they were reclining at the table eating, he said, “I tell you the truth, one of you will betray me—one who is eating with me.”

19 They were saddened, and one by one they said to him, “Surely not I?”

20 “It is one of the Twelve,” he replied, “one who dips bread into the bowl with me. 21 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.”

22 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take it; this is my body.”

23 Then he took the cup, gave thanks and offered it to them, and they all drank from it.

24 “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many,” he said to them. 25 “I tell you the truth, I will not drink again of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it anew in the kingdom of God.”

26 When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.



vv. 1-2 – Huge crowds would be in Jerusalem at Passover time. The popular expectation was that the Messiah would reveal himself during the Passover celebrations. The religious authorities knew that Jesus had made that claim for Himself, and they feared that He would take the opportunity to declare it openly in the next few days. They decided that they had to act quickly, before the festival began.
Often in the past, wild dreamers had claimed to be the long-awaited Messiah. They had gathered a following, and the Roman soldiers had put the crowds down with great loss of life. The leaders believed that Jesus was another one of these wild dreamers, and they feared that another riot would take place and more people would be killed because of it.

v. 8 – Jesus knew the struggle unto death that was before Him.

vv. 10-11 -With Jesus’ disciple Judas’ willingness to betray Him, the leaders had a chance to capture Jesus and take Him to His death in a secret and out-of-the-way place

vv. 12-16 – Every Jewish family celebrates the Passover Meal. Usually it is done by the
family in their home. In Jesus’ case, He and His disciples had to find a room where they could do it away from home. The Passover celebration remembers how God saved Israel from their captivity in Egypt. They were to slaughter a lamb just as their ancestors did in Egypt so that they could place the blood over their door.

God sent the angel of death that night into Egypt to kill the firstborn son in every household because the Pharaoh kept on refusing to let the people go. When the angel of death saw the door with the blood, he “passed over” that house. The Israelites were saved from the punishment of that night, and the Pharaoh finally relented and let them go free.

Jesus saw Himself in that same role as the lamb, sacrificed so that God’s People could be set free.  God’s love is relentless, active, and sacrificial.

v. 21 – Jesus tried to warn Judas about going ahead with his betrayal.  Jesus never gives
up on us.  He is always trying to win us back, and He will always receive us back if we repent.

vv. 22-24 – Jesus used the occasion of the Passover Meal to inaugurate the observance of
His own saving work.  This celebration is called “The Lord’s Supper” or “Holy Communion” in Christian churches, where many traditions observe it at every Sunday worship.

v. 25 -Jesus often spoke of heaven as a great feast.


What do you think about what you read today?




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