Thursday, March 28, 2013

Maundy Thursday

The Last Supper
Leonardo da Vinci
Lest I forget...

(All quoted material is from the OAFSSRFTOTN.)
Maundy Thursday (also known as Holy Thursday, Covenant Thursday, Great and Holy Thursday, Sheer Thursday and Thursday of Mysteries) is the Christian feast, or holy day, falling on the Thursday before Easter. It commemorates the Maundy and Last Supper of Jesus Christ with the Apostles as described in the Canonical gospels. It is the fifth day of Holy Week, and is preceded by Holy Wednesday and followed by Good Friday.
Maundy (from Latin Mandatum), or Washing of the Feet, is a religious rite observed as an ordinance by several Christian denominations. John 13:1–17 mentions Jesus performing this act. Specifically, in verses 13:14–17, He instructs them, 14 "If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet." 15 "For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you." 16 "Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him." 17 "If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them." As such, many denominations observe the washing of the feet on Maundy Thursday of Holy Week Moreover, for some denominations, foot-washing was an example, a pattern. Many groups throughout Church history and many modern denominations have practiced foot washing as a church ordinance.
And of course this week is also the celebration of Passover -
The Jewish people celebrate Passover as a commemoration of their liberation over 3,300 years ago by God from slavery in ancient Egypt that was ruled by the Pharaohs, and their birth as a nation under the leadership of Moses. It commemorates the story of the Exodus as described in the Hebrew Bible especially in the Book of Exodus, in which the Israelites were freed from slavery in Egypt.
In the narrative of the Exodus, the Bible tells that God helped the Children of Israel escape from their slavery in Egypt by inflicting ten plagues upon the ancient Egyptians before the Pharaoh would release his Israelite slaves; the tenth and worst of the plagues was the death of the Egyptian first-born.
The Israelites were instructed to mark the doorposts of their homes with the blood of a slaughtered spring lamb and, upon seeing this, the spirit of the Lord knew to pass over the first-born in these homes, hence the name of the holiday. There is some debate over where the term is actually derived from. When the Pharaoh freed the Israelites, it is said that they left in such a hurry that they could not wait for bread dough to rise (leaven). In commemoration, for the duration of Passover no leavened bread is eaten, for which reason it is called "The Festival of the Unleavened Bread". Thus Matzo (flat unleavened bread) is eaten during Passover and it is a symbol of the holiday.
It was to Jerusalem Jesus went, to celebrate Passover with his Disciples and to fulfill his destiny. Without Judaism, there would be no Jesus. Without Jesus there would be no salvation. I hope we would always remember just how intertwined these two great faiths are and to treat each other with love and respect.

Of course, I would hope that regardless of what faith someone professes, we would always treat each other with love and respect. Whether we believe it or not, we are all God's children and we are all brothers and sisters in His Sight.

I will be reflecting deeply on the meaning of this weekend and the events which took place two millennia ago. Especially when I look around me at the secular world. Without my faith I would be in absolute despair at times. But I have faith and I have hope.

Regardless of which of these two faiths you adhere to, or whether you adhere to no faith at all, may God grant you peace, long life and happiness. Never lose hope.



Silly Sarge will return, it's just that 
sometimes Serious Sarge has to get a
few words in.

2 comments:

Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)