Maundy Thursday, also known as Holy Thursday, is a Christian observance in the United States. It is the day before Good Friday and takes place during Holy Week. It commemorates Jesus Christ’s last supper and the initiation of Holy Communion (the Eucharist), observed in many Christian churches. Calendar day: Thursday, March 24, 2016; Thursday, April 13, 2017.
What Do People Do? Many Holy Thursday services are held in the evenings and offer Communion (or Eucharist) to the congregation. Some priests or ministers wash parishioners’ feet in memory of the story of Jesus washing his disciples’ feet. Some Christians donate money to the poor. Some people also prepare a meal that includes roast lamb, bitter herbs and wine around this time of the year. The term “Maundy” derives from the Latin word for “commandment”. In UK the tradition of the Sovereign giving money to the poor dates from the thirteenth century. The Sovereign also used to give food and clothing, and even washed the recipients’ feet. The last monarch to do so was James II.
WHAT DID JESUS DO ON AN ORDINARY DAY WHEN HE WAS ON EARTH?
We read the New Testament from the One Year Bible to see what Jesus did. My notes are in boldness and italics.
Luke 5:12-28 New King James Version (NKJV)
Jesus Cleanses a Leper. Jesus cleansed the unclean. He showed compassion on an outcast of the society. He did it on any day. Not just one special day of the year.
12 And it happened when He was in a certain city, that behold, a man who was full of leprosy saw Jesus; and he fell on his face and implored Him, saying, “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.”
13 Then He put out His hand and touched him, saying, “I am willing; be cleansed.” Immediately the leprosy left him. 14 And He charged him to tell no one, “But go and show yourself to the priest, and make an offering for your cleansing, as a testimony to them, just as Moses commanded.”
15 However, the report went around concerning Him all the more; and great multitudes came together to hear, and to be healed by Him of their infirmities. 16 So He Himself often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed.
Jesus Forgives and Heals a Paralytic. Jesus forgave sins. He healed the physical and the soul illness. He did not reject one person because of any special sin. He knew what was inside the man even though others could not see. They saw a man totally paralyzed physically. But Jesus saw his heart that was crippled and bound by sins. Jesus healed him in and out.
17 Now it happened on a certain day, as He was teaching, that there were Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting by, who had come out of every town of Galilee, Judea, and Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was present to heal them.[a] 18 Then behold, men brought on a bed a man who was paralyzed, whom they sought to bring in and lay before Him. 19 And when they could not find how they might bring him in, because of the crowd, they went up on the housetop and let him down with his bed through the tiling into the midst before Jesus.
20 When He saw their faith, He said to him, “Man, your sins are forgiven you.”
21 And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, “Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
22 But when Jesus perceived their thoughts, He answered and said to them, “Why are you reasoning in your hearts? 23 Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Rise up and walk’? 24 But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins”—He said to the man who was paralyzed,“I say to you, arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.”
25 Immediately he rose up before them, took up what he had been lying on, and departed to his own house, glorifying God. 26 And they were all amazed, and they glorified God and were filled with fear, saying, “We have seen strange things today!”
Matthew the Tax Collector was called to follow Jesus on an ordinary day. He was just minding his business collecting tax and accumulating his worldly wealth. But Jesus stopped and talked to him and commanded him to become a disciple of Jesus. Jesus knew this man would give up everything and follow Jesus. True enough Matthew obeyed and followed. He became a true disciple of Jesus on an ordinary day when Jesus called and he heard.
27 After these things He went out and saw a tax collector named Levi, sitting at the tax office. And He said to him, “Follow Me.”28 So he left all, rose up, and followed Him.
- Luke 5:17 NU-Text reads present with Him to heal.
One Year Bible Reading: Psalms 42:1-5; Numbers 33:40-35:34; Luke 5:12-28; Proverbs 11:23