March 15, 2023 – Lent


His Final Steps Led to a Dinner Celebration

Dinner celebrations: They are among the highlights of our lives. Maybe it’s a birthday party, maybe it’s the fellowship with snacks that we enjoy here after worship services. Or maybe on Sundays it’s with family or church friends. Or think about weddings! It’s often the reception that many will remember best when it comes to the big day. The wedding party seated at the head table; parents and grandparents at a table of honor nearby; a catered feast for all the guests followed by an endless variety of desserts; and, of course, we have to top it off with a piece of traditional wedding cake.

Our Savior also seemed to enjoy dinner celebrations. After all, his first steps in his public ministry led him to a wedding in Cana. There our Savior saved a reception by turning water into wine, which—by the way—was his first miracle recorded in Scripture (John 2:1-11). We cannot count the many more dinner parties or lunch dates our Savior attended during the next three years of his ministry, but there must have been a lot of them. Because after a time, our Savior’s enemies leveled this charge against him: “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them” (Luke 15:2). John the apostle informs us that now it was “six days before the Passover” (John 12:1). I understand this to be the Friday just before Palm Sunday. Jesus was going to eat with sinners once more. Tonight we consider how . . . His Final Steps Led to a Dinner Celebration.

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