Updated: Apr 16, 2019
I love dining tables. So much happens at dining room tables. Dinners, parties, board game nights, long talks, homework, hard conversations, and ministry. So many emotions are expressed around dining room tables; happiness, sadness, frustration, joy, disgust, anger, elation.
In this passage (Mark 14:12-31) we see a depiction of what is known as “The Last Supper.” There is a traditional meal, Passover, which is to be served around a dining room table. As Jesus’ disciples approach this meal, Jesus gives them some pretty bizarre instructions on finding their spot.
Can you imagine being the guy whose house where they have Passover dinner? He feels the Holy Spirit telling him in advance to set up a room in his house for 13 guests. He obeys and then goes about his business. When the apostles show up at his house, he knows exactly what they seek. He has a small part in this story, but if not for his obedience and generosity the Last Supper wouldn’t have had a dining room table.
Now the scene is set in some random guy’s house! The disciples all gather around to have a nice holiday meal with their Teacher. While the twelve were low key partying (this translation reads “reclining at the table and eating”) Jesus drops this line:
“One of you will betray me.”
Can you hear those words lingering in the air? You have spent years walking with Jesus and this group of men. You have seen and done miracles with these guys. How could one of them betray the Teacher? This is one awkward, dynamic, and pivotal conversation around a dining room table. After this revelation and subsequent denials, Jesus drops another couple lines; “this is my body” and “this is my blood” broken and shed for you in a covenant extending to all of us. He is telling his disciples, in no uncertain terms, this will be the last time they get to eat together. The last time they will enjoy a dining room table together in this way. And then, as if Jesus calling out one of his twelve as a backstabber, and an everlasting covenant aren’t enough, Jesus tells the group they will all turn against Him in the coming days. Even Peter will deny connection to Jesus. Yes, even YOU, Peter! Again, the conversation with this particular group must have been thick, intense, and emotional.
I’ve had some conversations around dining room tables. I have talked with my wife about finances, child names, and what we are going to be doing the next week. I have done ministry with neighbors, friends, and people I barely know.
I had conversations with my mom about God, love, and yes even “THE talk.” In my life dining room tables have been a part of some pivotal chapters in my story.
I remember sitting at a dining room table and staring at the crinkles and lines on my knuckles as my mom told me that my grandmother had passed. I can still feel a little bit of the constriction of my heart and drop of my stomach as I realized I will never have another conversation with her again.
"I can still feel a little bit of the constriction of my heart and drop of my stomach as I realized I will never have another conversation with her again."
As I read this passage, I can feel how Jesus’ words would have landed on the twelve. This telling of the Last Supper story allows us to engage in one of Jesus’ last conversations with his disciples and taste the tension and emotion of the week leading up to his death. REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
1. Just as the random guy opened his home up to Jesus and the twelve, are there areas in your life you feel the Holy Spirit asking you to obey and prepare? Even if the requests are strange or difficult, will you obey?
2. Have you ever been blindsided by a truth that was hard to conceive? What were your prayers in that moment and how did Jesus respond?
3. Can you think of a time where you denied Jesus recently (in big ways or small ways)? Have you sought the Father’s forgiveness for this betrayal? #stpeteunderground #stpetersburg #stpete #dtsp #stpetersburgflorida #pinellas #tarpon #clearwater #godskingdom #dunedin #trinity #pinellaspark #seminole #undergroundchurch #network #movement #churchmovement #community #undergroundnetwork #jesus #family #healing #nonprofit #encounter #jesuswept #lovedbyjesus #beingledbyholyspirit #holyspirit #holyweek #Easter #blog #reflections #microchurches #resource