Maundy Thursday

Exodus 12:1-14
John 13:1-17

Tonight is all about creating new traditions.  New Traditions for the Israelites as they prepare for the Exodus. New Traditions for the disciples as they gather in the upper room on the night Jesus was betrayed. New Traditions for all of us as we continue to adopt/adjust to life with Covid-19.

We are all learning how to live life differently.  We are all learning how to worship “apart . . . yet together.”  I can tell you it is strange leading worship in the absence of a congregation. We are all learning how to fill our time as we are confined to a stay at home order. 

As we are all learning how to live, have you ever though that some of the things we have started doing may very well be new “traditions” that we are creating as we are all spending a bit more time a home. 

New Traditions . . . What do they look like? Well for the Israelites . . . they look like a meal. 

  • Lamb roasted (not boiled)
  • Bread baked (without leaven)
  • Eaten hurriedly.  With rob on and staff in hand.
  • And blood marking the door post so that the angel of Death might simply “pass over”

For God was about to do a new and miraculous thing. God was going to save the people! Too long they had lived in bondage, too long they had been kept from worshiping God, too long they had been oppressed. This was God’s final answer to the continued request that Moses had made . . . “Pharaoh . . . Let my people go”

New traditions were at hand . . . salvation was near.

The same can be said as Jesus gathered with his disciples on the night in which he was betrayed. In the midst of sharing a meal, a bowl was taken out, Jesus undressed and sat on the floor, and he began to wash the feet of his disciples. Then later he took a loaf of bread, he took a cup, he blessed them saying take and eat.

As Jesus took on the role of the servant washing the disciples’ feet, and later as Jesus redefined the Passover meal, he redefines the story of God’s saving act.  For salvation was soon at hand even as the cross grows every closer.

Today, even for us, as the world is being redefined by how we live, work, and interact with one another, New Traditions are being created. But how will those new traditions reflect our life of faith? How will we live out the story of our salvation and reflect the grace, love, and peace that is gifted to us through the life, death, and resurrection of Christ?

I pray that it is through actions of compassion as we seek to love and care for one another!

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