Holy Thursday – April 2, 2015

Today’s Reading: Mark 14:12-26

And as they were eating, he took bread, and after blessing it broke it and gave it to them, and said, “Take; this is my body.”  And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, and they all drank of it.  And he said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many.”
 – Mark 14:22-24

Jesus’ body and blood poured out for many. You need this. You are tempted by the world, the flesh, and the devil. You give in. You make yourself god. You disobey authority. You hate and murder. You lust. You steal. You lie. You covet. You daily sin much. Your sins leave you feeling guilty, ashamed, and weak. You need God’s forgiveness, His life, His salvation.

Jesus won those gifts for you when He bore your sins on Calvary’s cross. He took the punishment that you deserve for your sins. The punishment is death, the death by which he poured out His body and blood for you as sacrifice for all your sins.

And get this: Jesus doesn’t just win you those gifts. He gives them to you. Jesus gives you the gifts of forgiveness, life, and salvation as he gives you His body and blood with the bread and wine of the Holy Communion. It’s just like the words of distribution say, “Take, eat; this is the true body of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, given into death for your sins…. Take, drink; this is the true blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, shed for the remission of your sins.” And where there is forgiveness of sins, there is also life and salvation. You need this and Jesus gives it to you.

Prayer: Thy body giv’n for me, O Savior, Thy blood which Thou for me didst shed, These are my life and strength forever, By them my hungry soul is fed. Lord, may Thy body and Thy blood Be for my soul the highest good! (Thy Body, Given for Me, O Savior, LSB 619:1).

This devotion was written by Rev. W. Max Mons, pastor of St. Paul’s Lutheran Chapel in Iowa City, IA.

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