From Ordinary to Extraordinary

Today’s Journey Through Scripture Readings:
Deuteronomy 22-24; Mark 14:1-26

MaundyThursday

22 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed it, broke it, and gave it to them, and said, “Take; this is my body.” 23 He took a cup, gave thanks, and gave it to them, and they all drank from it. 24 He said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many.25  I assure you that I won’t drink wine again until that day when I drink it in a new way in God’s kingdom.” 26 After singing songs of praise, they went out to the Mount of Olives (Mark 14:1-26, Common English Bible).

All too often, we have become so accustomed to eating the Lord’s Supper or Holy Communion, we don’t give much thought to where it came from or why. Sure, we who worship in more liturgical settings tend to go through the words on a fairly regular basis, but we have heard it so many times, many of us just don’t pay much attention anymore.

When Jesus sat down with the disciples for what would be the first Holy Communion, it was already a special time. It was the Passover. This day was the highest of Holy days for the Jews. It still is. As a part of the Passover celebration Jesus and the disciples at the traditional Passover or Seder meal. God gave specific instructions for the preparation of this meal and the meanings for the various elements.

For our purposes today, these various parts of the meal, while important, are not part of our focus. We are looking at two parts of the meal that even as part of the Seder meal, participants might well have looked past them to the more important elements.

Bread and wine were common components of most any meal in the Biblical era. For many people, still today, they are common meal elements. They are plain. They are ordinary.

Many people today still enjoy some kind of bread with their meal. For people of Jesus’ day bread was more than a side dish to the meal. Bread was an edible utensil. Without it, the meal might not have been possible.

As the supper progressed, Jesus took this common, ordinary part of the meal and he did something extraordinary with it. He held up the bread, broke it and gave it to his disciples. So far, there is nothing unexpected there. As practicing Jews, the disciples would have known the appropriate words to go with each part of the Seder. But Jesus didn’t say those words. He blessed the bread and said something extraordinary. He said, “This is my body, broken for you.”

In the traditional Seder, there are four cups of wine. The third cup is called “The Cup of Blessing.” According to tradition, with this cup, Jesus took the ordinary, wine, was also an ordinary part of a meal in Biblical times. Even today we generally want something to drink with our meal. Paul, in 1 Corinthians 10:16 says, “16 Isn’t the cup of blessing that we bless a sharing in the blood of Christ? Isn’t the loaf of bread that we break a sharing in the body of Christ” (CEB)? Many scholars lift this verse up as evidence that Jesus used the third cup of the Seder, the Cup of Blessing” to do the extraordinary saying, “This is my blood of the covenant, poured out for many.”

Placed in the hands of God, even the most ordinary can become something extraordinary. They become something so extraordinary that 2000 years later, they are still remembered and celebrated today.

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

With Joy and Thankfulness,
Keith

Copyright 2018, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

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