“Then came the Day of Unleavened Bread, when the Passover must be killed. And He sent Peter and John, saying, ‘Go and prepare the Passover for us, that we may eat.’ So they said to Him, ‘Where do You want us to prepare?’ And He said to them, ‘Behold, when you have entered the city, a man will meet you carrying a pitcher of water; follow him into the house which he enters. Then you shall say to the master of the house, ‘The Teacher says to you, ‘Where is the guest room where I may eat the Passover with My disciples?’’ Then he will show you a large, furnished upper room; there make ready.’ So they went and found it just as He had said to them, and they prepared the Passover. When the hour had come, He sat down, and the twelve apostles with Him. Then He said to them, ‘With fervent desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; for I say to you, I will no longer eat of it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.’ Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, ‘Take this and divide it among yourselves; for I say to you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.’ And He took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.’ Likewise He also took the cup after supper, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you. But behold, the hand of My betrayer is with Me on the table. And truly the Son of Man goes as it has been determined, but woe to that man by whom He is betrayed!’ Then they began to question among themselves, which of them it was who would do this thing. Now there was also a dispute among them, as to which of them should be considered the greatest. And He said to them, ‘The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those who exercise authority over them are called ‘benefactors.’ But not so among you; on the contrary, he who is greatest among you, let him be as the younger, and he who governs as he who serves. For who is greater, he who sits at the table, or he who serves? Is it not he who sits at the table? Yet I am among you as the One who serves. But you are those who have continued with Me in My trials. And I bestow upon you a kingdom, just as My Father bestowed one upon Me, that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.’ And the Lord said, ‘Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.’ But he said to Him, ‘Lord, I am ready to go with You, both to prison and to death.’ Then He said, ‘I tell you, Peter, the rooster shall not crow this day before you will deny three times that you know Me.’ And He said to them, ‘When I sent you without money bag, knapsack, and sandals, did you lack anything?’ So they said, ‘Nothing.’ Then He said to them, ‘But now, he who has a money bag, let him take it, and likewise a knapsack; and he who has no sword, let him sell his garment and buy one. For I say to you that this which is written must still be accomplished in Me: ‘And He was numbered with the transgressors.’ For the things concerning Me have an end.’ So they said, ‘Lord, look, here are two swords.’ And He said to them, ‘It is enough.’”
What Kind of God Is Jesus?
All of us must always pray to God because we are beings that can live properly in this world only with the help of God. I believe God will certainly help us whenever we pray to God for one another and share difficult matters with one another amid hardship. It is because God is our Father God, and because He always hears our prayers of request. Let’s all pray always with the faith that believes the Lord definitely answers our prayers. Let’s live this world blessedly with such faith.
Do you pray fervently? Prayer is a method of seeking help from God concerning our problems. However, the people who do not have faith cannot go to God with faith and seek help for difficult problems they have. You must first have faith in order to pray to the Lord, but if you think your own faith is lacking, seek help from other saints in the Church. You can pray better if you pray along with people who have faith. Even if a saint has a faith the size of mustard seed, God hears the prayer and helps when the saint joins his heart together with another as I have said now and seek the resolution of the problem in prayer to God. Therefore, why do you worry when you can witness the power of God if you pray to God like that?
When we read the Book of Job, we can see even Satan the Devil seeking the permission of the Lord, “Would it be okay for me to harass Job? Would he revere God without any reason? Should I get rid of his wealth?” We cannot say such seeking by Satan the Devil is really a prayer, but I think it is kind of a prayer since he did seek to God like that. When we look at the Word here, the Lord said to Peter, “Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat.” It means that Satan the Devil asked God, “Should I shake up Simon and see whether he believes in God or not?” Generally, God agrees to let such things be done. Even though it is the prayer of Satan the Devil, He allows such things. He says, “Go ahead and do as you want.”
What would happen if Satan the Devil tempted people like that? People would fall for such temptation as many persimmons fall when you shake a persimmon tree. That is why the Lord told His disciples, “Pray to God so that you may not fall into temptation.” As such, you and I must always pray to God whenever we face difficult situations. We ourselves must pray first individually, and then pray together with those who are ahead of us in faith. Then we must pray through the meetings in each group. We will experience the living God through our prayer of faith.
Healing the sick is not the only way to manifest the power of God. Praying to God and seeking God’s help in our daily lives and receiving the resolution of problems through God’s help is the true experience of God’s power and the answer to the prayer. Actually, it is true that busy people cannot pray faithfully. Even so, we must pray individually like this, pray together, pray for the brothers and sisters who are facing hardship, pray for the workers of God, pray for the preaching of the gospel, and seek God’s help in all things like that as we live in this world.
We can title the Word that we have read together as “Jesus Knows Everything Because He is God, Not a Human.” We will share lessons from today’s Scripture passage in relation to this title and learn the divine nature and the power of Jesus.
Before Jesus died on the Cross, the Passover season of Israel was near. At that time, Jesus told His disciples to prepare for a Passover table for Him to get together with them. However, because the Lord was God Almighty and knew all things, He said, “Behold, when you have entered the city, a man will meet you carrying a pitcher of water; follow him into the house which he enters. Then you shall say to the master of the house, ‘The Teacher says to you, ‘Where is the guest room where I may eat the Passover with My disciples?’’ Then he will show you a large, furnished upper room; there make ready.”
The Lord wanted to have a communion with His disciples on the Passover season that commemorated Israel people’s escape from Egypt and liberation from slavery. He wanted to eat bread, drink wine, have supper together with them, and share the last Word with them. This Word means that the Lord knew all things that would occur in the future. There wasn’t anything that He did not know. That is why the Lord was able to say, “Behold, when you have entered the city, a man will meet you carrying a pitcher of water; follow him into the house which he enters.”
The Scriptures Say That Jesus Wants to Use Us
When we look at the Gospel of Luke chapter 19, the Lord said, “Go into the village opposite you, where as you enter you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever sat. Loose it and bring it here. And if anyone asks you, ‘Why are you loosing it?’ thus you shall say to him, ‘Because the Lord has need of it.’” The Lord said all these things also because He knew everything of even the future. When we read the Four Gospels, we can confirm the fact that there wasn’t anything the Lord did not know even though He came to this world in the flesh of a man. Didn’t the Lord tell them beforehand to say to the owner of the colt, “The Lord has need of it” because He knew how the owner would ask when they loosen the colt and bring it with them? When the disciples said, “The Lord has need of it,” as the Lord told them to convey, the owner of the colt gave up his colt without any resistance. Even on the Passover, the Lord knew what would happen and made the disciples prepare for the Passover. As such, the Lord was calm and was not frustrated at all because He knew everything about the future.
However, how are we? We are not divine beings. We are just children of God and God’s servants. I know this fact clearly and I have such faith, but I sometimes have desire to have almighty power like God. It means that I sometimes have regrettable thoughts like, “Lord, You know everything because You are God. However, we always have many necessary things that need Your help because we are weak and not beings like You.” If we knew everything like God and had the power and strength to do things as we please, then, what would there be for us to be frustrated with? It would be really great if we could all be like that. I feel the same way. I sometimes think arrogantly, “It would be great if I had such power as God.”
Jesus came to this world to save us: He received the baptism, was crucified to the Cross, was spat on, was whipped, and died on the Cross. He was disrespected for a while like that for our salvation. However, He was God who essentially knew everything and did everything according to His immense wisdom. Such Lord told the disciples to prepare for the Passover and said, “You will meet a certain person when you go into that village. Follow him and prepare the Passover in an upper room.” And when the disciples of Jesus went into that village as the Lord had commanded them, there actually was a man carrying the water jar. How shocking the man must have been when the disciples followed him. Actually, the appearances of the disciples probably were not very sharp. The man must have really been shocked since the disciples were probably wearing some blanket-like garments over them, not a sharp suit. The man probably ran away because such people were following him. However, the disciples of Jesus didn’t care about such things and just followed him, and they conveyed the Lord’s message. Therefore, they were able to prepare for the Passover properly.
Actually, the Lord did not prepare for the Passover table in order to keep Passover, the national holiday of Israel. The Lord had the Last Passover Supper with the disciples. It means that the Lord had the last supper with His disciples. The Lord sat with the disciples in that house, had supper, and also spoke with them. He said to them, “With fervent desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; for I say to you, I will no longer eat of it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, “Take this and divide it among yourselves; for I say to you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” And He took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” Likewise, He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you. But behold, the hand of My betrayer is with Me on the table. And truly the Son of Man goes as it has been determined, but woe to that man by whom He is betrayed!”
What does such Word of the Lord mean? It means that even while having communal supper, the Lord knew that Judas would sell Him out moments later. When I think about this, it seems that the Lord felt comfortable because He knew everything like this. The Lord knew what Judas would do in the future, so He might think, “Judas, he will sell Me out even though he always serves Me most respectfully calling Me, ‘Rabbi, Teacher.’”
The Lord said, “And truly the Son of Man goes as it has been determined.” As this Word tells us, the Lord knew that He had to be crucified on the Cross because He had received the baptism, because He already took all the sins of the world upon Himself. The Lord meant, “It must be done exactly like that because it is the will of God the Father, and I will go according to the recorded Word, but woe to the person who sells Me.” Actually, we do not have anything else to do but to believe the Word because our Lord fulfilled everything according to God’s Word. It means that we must believe in the Word exactly as it is written instead of trying hard to change the Word.
Is there anyone on earth who has such power? Is there anyone who knows all about his fate? No, there isn’t. That is right. There is no one who knows everything like Jesus. There has never been someone like that before and there will never be such a person like that in the future. We were able to become wise only by believing in Jesus with such power. There is nothing else for us to do besides believing in Him. How could we compare ourselves with Jesus? Regardless of how smart we are, can we deceive Jesus? No, we cannot. Therefore, do not ever try to compete with Jesus in anything or try to fathom His thoughts in any way. I say it again: Jesus Christ is the only One who knows everything.
The Lord Then Spoke about the Kingdom of God
The Lord said, “I have come to this world as the One who serves. Serve one another. I am among you as the One who serves.” And the Lord said that He would bestow upon us the Kingdom that God the Father bestowed upon Him and make us eat and drink at His table in His Kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
What else did the Lord ask to His disciples? He said to Peter, “Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.” When Peter said, “Lord, I am ready to go with You, both to prison and to death,” the Lord said, “I tell you, Peter, the rooster shall not crow this day before you will deny three times that you know Me.” It means that the Lord knew beforehand what Peter would do in the future, how his character was, how his heart was, and how his faith was.
The Lord wants us to believe and follow these things the Lord has said. The Lord said to His disciples, “I will reward you if you endure hardship and suffering with Me,” and told them of the things that would happen in the future. Therefore, we must believe in the things the Lord spoke of.
The Lord also said, “For I say to you, I will no longer eat of it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God,” and “For I say to you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” Why did the Lord say such things? Here, the word “Passover” means “to pass over.” That is, it means "passing over the one that should be judged without judging him.” Therefore, the Word here is saying that God will definitely save people who have received the remission of sins by believing in God. Really, there is no such thing as pain, judgment, and sadness when we enter the Kingdom of God by really receiving the remission of sins through faith; we will be able to live with the Lord in the Kingdom the Father has given, enjoying all wealth, glory, pleasure, and joy as kings on the thrones. The Lord spoke of such things to you and me.
I really cannot understand the Word of the Lord that says, “I will make you sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel. I will give you such authority.” However, I will be able to understand it when I see, hear, and experience it soon because the Millennial Kingdom will be established after a short while. Here, the Lord said “tribes” and there are such tribes even today. As every Israelite belonged to each respective tribe such as the tribe of Levi, the tribe of Issachar, or the tribe of Zebulun, we believers have different gifts and different positions. The Lord said that He would give the Father’s Kingdom to the people who would suffer trials and tribulations with Him and stay with Him in the midst of trials. It means that He will receive the Kingdom from God the Father and make such people rule over each tribe. The Lord said such things to us and He wants us to believe the Word as it is. We must have firm faith in this. I think that people should follow the Lord diligently and work for that glorious reward if there really is reward to those who have devoted themselves to the Lord.
The Lord said to His disciples that they had to carry any money when they went out to preach the gospel. However, the Lord told His disciples on the communal supper of the Passover, “But now, he who has a money bag, let him take it, and likewise a knapsack; and he who has no sword, let him sell his garment and buy one.” Before, the Lord told them not to carry anything. However, while He was having the communal supper, He told them to buy a sword even if they had to sell their clothes. At that time, a certain disciple brought two swords and said to the Lord, “Here are the swords.” Then Jesus said it was good enough.
The Lord must have been really frustrated at that time. I would have rebuked him immediately because of the frustration if I had been in Jesus’ shoes. I would have said, “You really bought the swords now because I told you to sell your clothes and buy one?” That was because buying the sword here meant that He wanted them to be blessed by believing in His Word at any sacrifice.
However, the Lord did not say anything special because He knew the character, weakness, and stubbornness of the disciples. Therefore, He just said, “That is enough.” Jesus was able to respond like that because He was God. Otherwise, if He were a human, He would have died of frustration. When the disciples bought bread to Jacob’s well near the city of Sychar, the Lord also said, “I have food to eat of which you do not know.” That was something the disciples could never really understand. Rather, they probably thought they had to eat because they were very hungry and wondered why He just dragged them around the field without giving them anything to eat. And since the Lord was their Teacher, they thought they should give food to their reverend Teacher first even though He did not want to eat anything, and that’s why they stuffed the food into the Lord’s mouth.
Seeing such behaviours of His disciples, the Lord might have been very frustrated. For example, when the Lord said, “The Son of Man will be sold to the elders and the religious leaders and be killed at the hands of the gentiles,” Peter said, “Such things will never happen.” He rolled up his sleeves and took off his shirt and said, “If there is such a person who harms You, I will send him to the grave.” However, what did the Lord say to Peter who was like that? He said, “You will deny me three times.” Peter said, “I will never do such a thing. I will follow you even to the jaws of death, and I will also go to the prison with you if you go to the prison.” However, what happened? Before the night passed, Peter denied the Lord three times just as the Lord said.
When the Lord finished the communal supper like that, He went up to the mountain with the disciples and prayed. In the Middle East region like Israel, the weather sometimes fluctuates severely, but the climate is generally dry. It is rather a good place for people to live because humidity is not high. The Lord went up to the mountain with His disciples to pray on such dry and comfortable day. While Jesus was praying to God the Father like that, Judas brought soldiers and they took Jesus away. It is recorded in the Scriptures that the rest of the disciples resisted and took the sword and cut off the ear of a certain man, but Jesus took the ear that was cut off and attached it back on the person. Even though the Four Gospels seem like just ordinary Words, they are the Word of God that recorded only the Truth. It means that the disciples of Jesus recorded exactly the things Jesus had spoken and done. What do the Four Gospels say about the ear that was cut off? It is written that the person’s ear was cut off, but Jesus attached it back on the person.
You and I who are leading a life of faith must believe and follow God’s Word exactly as it is. There is no other way. We should not think, “God’s Word is like this, but I should seek my own way.” It’s because there is no greater Truth in the world than the Word of God. The Word our Lord has spoken is the Truth and there is no deceit in the Truth. The Truth is the life. It means God’s Word is living and powerful (Hebrews 4:12). Therefore, God’s Word is totally different from the words of the world. When we just believe in the Word, the Lord looks at our faith and always says, “That is enough.” When one of His disciples said, “I have brought two swords,” the Lord replied, “That is enough.” When we believe in the Scriptures with out hearts, the Lord looks at our faith and says, “That is enough.” Therefore, we just need to believe in all the Word. There is nothing else besides this. It means that we don’t need to be cunning in our spiritual life.
While Jesus was in this world, He often went to the houses of lepers. He often went to the home of Simon who had been a leper and had dinner there. And He also went to the home of Lazarus often. Lazarus of Bethany had two sisters. One of the sisters was Mary and the other was the woman called Martha. And when the Lord went to that house, Martha always went to the kitchen and prepared the food diligently, while Mary stayed right next to the Lord and listened to the Lord’s Word. Therefore, Martha naturally had a grievance against her sister Mary. Jesus saw that and said to Martha, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her” (Luke 10:41-42). He was saying, “It is more precious to hear my Word than to prepare for the food.” It means that the Lord is happier with us listening to God’s Word and believing in that Word. It means the Lord is never happy with us doing so many things before the presence of the Lord without believing in the Word. The most important thing is to believe in God’s Word because there is life, blessing, all our happiness, eternal life, wealth, and glory in the Word itself.
Therefore, the Word and all its blessings actually become ours when we believe in God’s Word. We must believe with clear understanding that our Lord Jesus is God, not a human. This faith is very important. Do you have power to attach the detached ear? No, you don’t. Can you know everything that will happen in the future? No, you don’t. However, Jesus knew everything. He is omnipotent and omniscient.
Even while Jesus was having the Last Supper with His disciples, He knew that He would be taken to the authorities. He also knew what would happen after being caught by them. Therefore, the Lord said during the Last Supper, “This bread is my body. This is my body for you.” This means that Jesus took all our sins upon Himself by receiving the baptism on His body. He also said, “This cup of wine is my blood for you.” This means that He would shed His blood to pay off all our sins that He had borne through His baptism. What is the thing the Lord said for us? It is the work of the Lord that took our sins upon Himself for us, received the judgment for the sins in our place, and saved us from the judgment. Our Lord took the bread and said, “Take this bread. This is my body.” He meant by this Word, “I took all your sins upon my body. I have given up my body for you to blot out all your sins.” And the Lord took a cup of wine and said, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you.”
You and I must have faith that professes, “Jesus is God. He is not a human.” We must be people who have such faith. We must be people who believe in God’s Word. There is no way for this Word of God to be interpreted any other way. This is what it means when we look at it through the original text written in Greek.
Therefore, we must believe in God’s Word and believe that Jesus is God, that He is the Son of God, and that He is our Lord God. Believe that such a God took all our sins and saved you and me from destruction and also believe that we have become the children of God through that faith. We can certainly receive the grace of God if we believe in God’s Word correctly and seek His help as we live in this world. Let’s become the people who believe like that and progress consistently and gradually even though we cannot make a big jump all at once. I sincerely want you to become the saints who actually experience the Lord’s grace like that. Amen.