My Luke 22 Journal Entry

 

Some of you have asked me for samples of some of my scripture journal entries…

So every once in a while… I will post some of my crazy thoughts.

Here they are for Luke 22…

* I make a small left column on a piece of paper and write the verse down that I am writing my thoughts about, and then in the larger, right column, I write those thoughts.  It is a system that works for me.

Luke 22:1

Christ has just come to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover.  This is a time that every Jew anticipates, plans and prepares for.  It is called the “Feast of Unleavened Bread” because one of the things that must be present in this meal is unleavened bread, or a flat bread, or a bread that has no yeast in it and therefore has not risen.  This is in remembrance of the night of the first Passover when the Angel of Death “Passed Over” their homes and they knew that they would be delivered that night.  Therefore they ate in haste, with their shoes on and their bags packed and there was no time for the bread to rise.

Luke 22:2

“And the chief priests and scribes sought how they might kill him.”  These were the very people that the Jews would have looked to find their Messiah!  The Priests were to stand as mediators between the people and God and do all they could to save the people.  The scribes were experts in the scriptures, so much so that they should be able to dictate appropriate Jewish law in accordance with scripture.  These are the very men who should have pointed the people towards Christ – so it is absurd to think that they sought to kill him!

But these positions had been filled by men seeking power rather than truth.  And they will hide behind their robes of power, and those robes will blind the people who will fall for their self-fulfilling teachings.

These are wicked men who can deceive the world and they can deceive each other.  But they cannot deceive those who have the Spirit.  And it is those people that they feared.

Throughout Christ’s entire ministry, these men had been seeking to catch Christ in his words trying to discredit him.  Now unsuccessful, they were conspiring, as presumed spiritual leaders to kill a man who was threatening their positions and status.  A man who was performing miracles!  A man whom they could not fool!  A man who was gaining followers from among the most righteous of the cities!

But these men were hoping for a spiritually illiterate population so that they could turn them against this man.  The less they knew the better.

Luke 22:3

There must be a whole back story to this verse.  Things about Judas we are not yet privy to.  One must ask if Satan had tried to sway each member of the twelve, or had he known that Judas was the most likely to cave?

We know that Judas had been offended because of Christ’s words.  We have clear record of many times when his Apostles could have chosen to be offended, because Christ loved them enough to be blunt and bold with them.  Had Judas not been able to take it?  Satan loves to bargain with our souls, and Judas’ pride left him an open target.

Is it to be taken literally that Satan entered into Judas’ body?  We know that if granted power, Satan or one of his minions may enter into a mortal’s body and we have read about plenty of circumstances where they have been cast out.  If this is the case, that means that Judas reached the lowest of the lows and would rather give himself over to the other side than to repent.

If it is to be taken symbolically, then it is a really clear way to say that Judas was completely submissive to the will of Satan.  For Satan’s work and glory is to destroy God’s plan, and what better opportunity than to try and intervene in the Atonement?  Satan knows the doctrine, but he is NOT enlightened.  He has to study the word of God, but that does not mean he understands it.  We can understand it far better than him.  So, as it was in the Garden of Eden, so it will be with the Atonement.  How Satan must have felt on the third day on the Resurrection morning, when there was clear proof that he had not succeeded.

This was a deliberate choice of Judas’.  He sought out the chief priests and asked them what they would give him.  Judas did not go with a set price of what the payment should be, and certainly he could have asked for an obscene amount.  But the price they offered, which is the price he accepted, proves that money was not what he was hoping to gain.  Thirty pieces of silver.  This, according to their law, was the price of a slave.  What a statement.  And what great irony.  The only perfect being who could free them from the shackles of Hell, they sold as a slave.

Sin is always done in dark corners, as certainly this was.  Children of the Light are found in the light – we care not if our doings are found out because they are pure and full of love.  However, we must be able to recognize the actions that result from dark corner conversations.  We must ask ourselves, if we would have recognized the true nature of the chief priests and scribes, or would we have been fooled by their positions and fancy robes?  The Book of Mormon is expert and teaching us how to recognize the enemies of Christ.

Sometimes we ask ourselves “why do the wicked prosper?”  Why do they have such high positions of power, wealth and prosperity?  That is the nature of the world that we live on.  But it is very temporary

Luke 22:4

Now,1,500 years after the first Passover, the Lamb Himself was preparing to celebrate the Passover and He will become the sacrificial Lamb.  HE who gave the tradition will change it.  The Last Supper is not because it is his last meal, it is because it is the last Passover.  From this point on, the Sacrament will be the new ordinance and covenant.

Luke 22:8-14

Now,1,500 years after the first Passover, the Lamb Himself was preparing to celebrate the Passover and He will become the sacrificial Lamb.  HE who gave the tradition will change it.  The Last Supper is not because it is his last meal, it is because it is the last Passover.  From this point on, the Sacrament will be the new ordinance and covenant.

Luke 22:15

One of His final wishes is to partake of the Passover with His beloved Apostles.  What a lovely moment.  Consider our traditional meals in our culture.  How we look forward to, prepare for and travel far for those feasts.  How dear we hold those moments in our lives.  And how dear this must have been in his.  He had this meal with his parent growing up, and now he is having it with his Apostles.

The hour that his sight has been set on is growing very close.  He had been pleading for the ability to succeed for years, then months, then weeks, then days, and now hours before.  How somber he must have been. The hour is now so close and he had prepared spiritually, but not experientially.  Certainly He understood that it would be hard, but we know that He was “astonished” in the Garden – it was harder than he had thought.  We know that he prayed for the “cup to be removed”, asking if there was any other way – for this was harder than He thought and He did NOT want to fail.  We know that He cried out “Papa” or “Daddy” during His travail.

We know that He knows, better than any of us, how important it was that the Atonement was to be achieved.  And He did not want to fail us.  But what this night would require, none of us can possibly fathom, and He knew the hour was very close.  But he still had a couple of things He needed to do while he still had his freedom and ability to teach His Apostles.

And I, for one, am grateful, that He was able to spend some of His last moments with people He loved in a feast that would have been dear to His heart.

Luke 22:16

This is the last Passover:  the last supper.

Luke 22:17-19

Christ now introduces the Sacrament.  Previous to this Passover, the meal taught and foreshadowed the ultimate deliverance – which the deliverance from Egypt was a type and shadow of.  The Jews learned what it is like to be bound physically, as slaves, to a master who did not have their best interests in mind.  And they learned that they could not deliver themselves.  And they learned that they needed a deliverer.  And they learned that they needed a lamb.

The Jews who truly saw the meaning of each Passover since then… who saw the symbols and took them seriously… who saw the feast as sacred rather than a holiday… would have been far more prepared for this final Passover.  And they would have been ready to receive a different emblem in its place.

I wonder if the Jews of that day started movements that you couldn’t mention the Lamb during the Passover in fear of offending someone who didn’t believe in it.  Or if they had legislature that forbid the schools to even use the word “Passover”

These Apostles, save one, were ready for the new emblem.  We must wonder how long it took to set in that there would be no more Passover, and the impact that would have on their culture.  But as for the new emblem, they were ready.  And they must be, because they will be the ones to teach it to the rest of the world.  It is being done as Christ’s organized Church always does – He instructs His Apostles, who will then take it to the world.  What a wonderful thing that we can catch a glimpse of such a moment.

These emblems will be much simpler that the Paschal Feast.  No lamb, or bitter herbs or haroseth will be needed.  But rather simple bread and wine.  And these Jews would have understood the symbols or the emblematic nature of them.  Their culture was full of such symbols.  It is our much more literal, western culture that struggles with such things.

Luke 22:21

And then He mentions a shocking truth.  He had been speaking of His coming death for days, and His Apostles couldn’t wrap their heads around it.   How ridiculous it must have been when Christ announces that the one who will betray Him is one of them.  How the Apostles must have felt to hear this!  The place that had seemed to secure, was not as they believed!  What expressions their faces must have held.

How would Judas have felt in this moment?  His secret dealings were just announced.  Was Christ talking about him?  Did He really know?  Assuming his works had been in secret, he showed up to the Passover and thought that he was fooling everyone.

Luke 22:22

Lest we excuse Judas and say that he was only doing what had to be done, we must recognize that the scriptures and the Lord do not.  He states, “truly, the Son of man goeth as determined”, or rather “this is a path that I must walk, this IS the way”.  But he does not excuse Judas:  “but woe unto that man by whom he is betrayed.”  It is a far-reaching attempt at justification to try and give him a free pass and say that “it was supposed to happen”, or that “someone had to do it..”  There were many “someones” who would have loved to do this, and the scriptures mention some of them specifically. And to be found in that line up is purely by our own determination.

It is human nature to seek to excuse our sins and bad choices.  We try to blame it on the circumstances, or on others.  Accountability is an Eternal principle, an attribute of Gods.  And while we spend energy trying to excuse our sins we become less prepared to be where we want to be in the Eternal Worlds – amongst those who see things “as they really are”.  And certainly, those of us who have fallen for Satan’s attractive temptation to excuse ourselves – we will be seeking him out wondering why he didn’t live up to his promises.

Luke 22:23

It is a natural reaction to start wondering who it is that would commit such an act!  And certainly their fear who cause them to tremble and ask (as Mark writes), “is it I?”  Can you imagine that stab of fear they felt at this moment?  Surely they were each painfully aware of their personal shortcomings and feared that they may be susceptible to this.

What they did not understand was that it was already in the works.  It must have been beyond their comprehension that one of them had gone and sought out the chief priests.  They did not seek out him.  Being bullied is a different story than actively seeking out the downfall of the innocent.

Among the “is it I”, there also must have been some “is it them?”  And what would it have been like to be one that people would have narrowed it down to as a possibility?  This would have been a fine time to not considered at all for a position.  This would have been a fine time to let all of my previous actions and character stand as a witness against such a possibility.  Unless sincere repentance has taken place, our history is good gauge for our future actions, and a great gauge for other to know if they want to involve themselves with us.

One must wonder as they take turns to make sure that they are not the one Christ is speaking of… “is it I?” they individually ask (and can you imagine the anxiety they felt asking it?); one must wonder what compelled Judas to also ask the question.  We could assume that it was not a sincere question and that he was merely asking it because everyone else was.  How his palms must have been sweating!

Luke 22:24-27

“Whom among us is the greatest?”  Who should get the honored seat at this table?  They are now asking.  This is such a “natural man” quality.  And although there is appropriateness to understanding positions and in proper lines of authority – this is not what they are asking, and you can tell by the way Christ answers them.  Even among these men, there still stood some need to know who was greater than the others.  They still had some growing to do.

Christ’s answer leaves a lot for us to ponder about.  We so often treat being the “greatest” as the purpose of our existence and ironically rising to the top is only done when we have vision and eternal perspective.  What is so great about being the one who is served meat by someone else?  It must suggest that they are lower than you, and therefore you have achieved more than they have.  Therefore you must be above them, and we get pleasure from that.  What a dangerous, destructive belief that is.  To desire to be above others, who have come to earth for the same purpose we have.  To desire to be better than another of Heavenly Father’s children.  The desire to be above them, and to look down on them.  OR the desire to be more, and then we look up with envy and disdain.  THESE are the elements of pride in which Satan rules this world with.  And we find them in our schools, neighborhoods, wards, work places, homes and families.

Certainly there are times we will be served, but what is in our hearts will be our true measure.  And likewise, there are those who will seek high positions because they desire to serve in a place where there will be opportunities to do much good.  But when they are there, they must continually check their hearts, because pride is a sneaky creature.

Being given the honored position (to the right of the host) wasn’t something that one should boast of, but rather, grateful for.  And if it hadn’t been me, I should be just as grateful for someone else who had received such an honor.

3 thoughts on “My Luke 22 Journal Entry

  1. These are great thank you. I love reading about what you write in your scripture journals. You don’t happen to have a study guide or something for Alama do you? I couldn’t find anything you’ve done with that book on your site.

  2. Thank you. I always learn so much when I read the things you write about your scripture journals. I am understanding so much more from my scripture reading because of how you’ve shown me to be able to find these treasures of knowledge for myself.

  3. I’m new to your site which is coincidental in that I just started a scripture journal as well. But I haven’t actually started it yet as I am focused on a Personal Progress experience right now. So my inquiry is this- do you do this on a daily basis, or is this a time when you are able to focus more fully? Thanks for sharing.

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