1 After 2 days was the feast of the passover, and of unleavened bread: and the chief priests and the scribes sought how they might take him by craft, and put him to death.

2 But they said, Not on the feast day, lest there be an uproar of the people.

3 And being in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as he sat at meat, there came a woman having an alabaster box of ointment of spikenard very precious; and she brake the box, and poured it on his head.

Messiah as a physical man was susceptible to the pleasure to be derived from the application of the luxurious ointment.

4 And there were some that had indignation within themselves, and said, Why was this waste of the ointment made?

5 For it might have been sold for more than three hundred pence, and have been given to the poor. And they murmured against her.

"Given to the poor!" This is always a handy plea, but look at its injustice -- Judas on the side of the poor and Christ not! This was the insinuation.

If Christ was the subject of such a reflection, why need his brethren be over-grieved if it be turned on them -- and by the very same class? Men of God sympathise with the poor and help them as they can. But there come times when something else has a call for attention. And then the Judases, who never at other times concern themselves about the poor, except at other people's expense, are liable to step forward and grumble about "the poor" being neglected.

Nazareth Revisited Ch 48

6 And Jesus said, Let her alone; why trouble ye her? she hath wrought a good work on me.


There is ample field for every liberal soul who may conceive liberal things in the service of God. By liberal things he shall stand. There are not many to whom liberality occurs in this direction. But the celestial phenomenon is not absolutely unknown. Surprising instances are permitted to break the monotony of carnal stagnation, which even Paul lamented when he said,

"All seek their own, and not the things which are Jesus Christ's".

The rule has not been cancelled which he formulated thus:

"He that soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully, and he that soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly."

A man seems a fool who spends on God. Final developments will show a light on this subject that all men will be able to see.

Law of Moses Ch 25

12 And the first day of unleavened bread, when they killed the passover, his disciples said unto him, Where wilt thou that we go and prepare that thou mayest eat the passover?

The law did not require the passover to be killed on the evening of the 14th day of Nisan; but "between the evenings" of that day. The lamb was to be put up on the 10th day, and to be kept up

"until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it bain hāărbāim), between the evenings."-Exod. 12:6.

The feast was also to be kept between the evenings.

"Let the children of Israel keep the passover at his appointed season. On the 14th day of this month between the evenings ye shall keep it in his appointed season, &c."-Numb. 9:2, 3.

These evenings would be what we term Thursday and Friday evenings, between which was the fourteenth day of the month.

We have no doubt but Jesus did really eat the passover with his disciples. This appears from his sending Peter and John, saying,

"Go, and prepare us the passover, that we may eat."

Afterwards, being seated at the table, he said,

"I have heartily desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer: for I say unto you, I will not any more (that is, after this eating) eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God."

According to Mark, the disciples said,

"Where wilt thou that we go and prepare that thou mayest eat the passover?"

In reply he said, go to a certain place and say,

"The master saith, where is the guest chamber, where I shall eat the passover with my disciples?" Having made ready, "In the evening he cometh with the twelve, and as they sat and did eat, Jesus said," &c.

But, Jesus and "the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel," doubtless, did not eat it at the same hour. Mark says, the passover was killed on the first day of unleavened bread; and this day began at even. Jesus and his companions ate the passover at the first evening; the Jews at the second, the intermediate day being their "preparation." Jesus was apprehended after eating at the first evening.

During that night he was arrested, and taken before the High Priest, and upon false testimony judged worthy of death. On what we call Friday morning, they held a council, which sent him bound to Pilate. Having confessed to him that he was the King of the Jews, he was therefore condemned to be executed for treason against Tiberius Cæsar.

Sentence being passed, they crucified him at 9 A. M.-"the third hour." At 12 M., "the sixth hour, " darkness overspread the land, and continued for three hours, or "till the ninth hour," or 3 P. M.; when the veil of the temple was rent, and the body of Jesus broken. And now when the second even was come,

"because it was the preparation, that is the day before the sabbath,"

the body was taken down, for it was not lawful for it to remain there all night; as it is written,

"If a man be put to death, and thou hang him on a tree, his body shall not remain all night upon the tree, but thou shalt in any wise bury him that day (for he that is hanged is the curse of God); that thy land be not defiled, which the Lord thy God giveth thee for an inheritance."-Deut. 21:21.

"And the evening and the morning were the first day."

Thus the Bible reckons.

From Thursday evening to Friday evening was the first day; from Friday evening to Saturday evening was the second day; and from Saturday evening to Sunday evening was the third entire day. The Jews reckoned this as three days.

Jesus rose very early in the morning of the Day 3. as typified in Jonah. If the law had confined the eating of the passover to the second evening of the 14th, Jesus would not have eaten; but as it was to be eaten between two evenings, Jesus could both eat the passover, and be slain as such.


Herald of the Kingdom and Age to Come, Jan 1856

16 And his disciples went forth, and came into the city, and found as he had said unto them: and they made ready the passover.

Christ our passover

WHEN Jesus instituted the memorial supper which we have met this morning to observe, he was surrounded by his disciples in an upper room in Jerusalem, where he had met them by appointment to keep the feast of the passover.

That feast was part of the Mosaic appointments. The meeting was on the basis of the law of Moses; for Jesus and the disciples were all Jews, born and bred under that law, which had been in force 1,400 years.

It was the last time they met together on that foundation, but not the last time they will eat the passover together, for he said:

"With desire I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer: for I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God."

The feast had been observed on countless previous occasions, and with an ostentation not to be found in that upper room among those quiet thirteen men; but never had there been such a momentous celebration of it.

The whole law, of which the passover was a part, was converging for its finish in the one sorrowful man who was the centre of that group.

"Christ our passover, sacrificed for us,"

was about to absorb in himself the significance of all that Israel had observed for ages in obedience to the law of Moses, and therefore of the passover which he was now about to eat for the last time as a mortal son of Abraham.

Seasons 1.91.

The memorial supper

22 And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and brake it, and gave to them, and said, Take, eat: this is my body.

We do not find, as we might expect, that this habit of meeting every Sunday morning to break bread in remembrance of Christ, loses its interest from repetition. On the contrary, the meetings grow more powerful to help us in the direction in which they are intended to draw and develop the mind.

This is due to the nature of the matters to which they stand related. Any other subject than the subject of Christ, would become threadbare and insipid from continual treatment. The subject of Christ becomes larger, deeper to the view, and stronger in its power to interest and control the mind; that is, where the mind is unreservedly surrendered.

...Christ and his friends were a very small and despised company, even in the days of Jewish sacerdotal splendour, not to speak of Rome's imperial grandeur, and the world is not more divine now than it was then.

If we find ourselves with very few, and those the poor, the illiterate and the despised, let us remember that this was the situation of the friends of God ages before we were born.

Seasons 1.67.

Do this in remembrance of me

Designed for a purpose, it serves its purpose admirably. It brings him before us in the hour of his, humiliation, and introduces to notice the day of his glory. It connects the two in one act. It reminds us of what he accomplished in the days of his weakness as the foundation of the day of his glory.

A guileless partaker of our common mortality in Adam, we see him herein offered in harmony with the working of an immutable Creator, that in raising him, the Father might provide us one in whom His law has been vindicated, that through him His grace might advance without the compromise of His justice. Perceiving this, we can unite in the adoration of the Designer of this arrangement of love.

We ascribe glory to Him that sitteth on the throne, and unto the Lamb. This table of the Lord gives us a standing ground for the scriptural contemplation of the sufferings of Christ and the glory that shall follow.

They help us to realize our entire dependence on him for all our hope of goodness in the ages to come; they help us to feel our position as his servants, his disciples, his brethren; they stir up, from first day to first day, our anxiety to be diligent to make our calling and election sure, by the doing of those things which he has commanded, obedience to which will alone command his favour in that day.

To forsake the assembly of ourselves altogether, after the manner of some, is a species of wilful sinning which will cut us off from beneficial relation to that one sacrifice of sins, which was made by and in the Root and Offspring of David.

It is a disobedience of one of the leading commandments, left by the Lord for the observance of his disciples, during his absence. The assembly of the saints at the table of the Lord, is one of the sweet resting-places provided by the Lord of the highway, for his weary pilgrims in their journey through this evil world.

Seasons 1.48.

As we partake of this ordinance, we bear testimony that

"man doth not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God."

We partake, in faith, of him who was the Word of God, the spiritual bread, who perfectly manifested in his own life the life-giving power of that divine Word.

And we declare in symbol, as we partake, our recognition that unless we faithfully identify ourselves with him in heart and soul, and follow the pattern that he has given, we cannot have life. In the seven promises to the seven ecclesias, it is each time only

"To him that overcometh.To him that overcometh,even as I overcame" (Rev. 3:21].

"Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in His goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off" (Rom. 11:22].

"I beseech you, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove - show, demonstrate, illustrate - what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God" (Rom.12:1-2].

Bro Growcott - BYT 2. 20

Concerning the breaking of bread, Christ said "Do this in remembrance of me." This command was not limited to his twelve apostles, for we find Paul "delivering" it to the Gentile believers at Corinth.—(1 Cor. 11:23.)

It was one of the ordinances he delivered unto them, which he praised them for keeping.—(5:2.) Paul was the apostle to the Gentiles: therefore to us. We have no access to the things of Christ except through his ministry—consequently, the breaking of bread is one of the things "absolutely required" of an obedient believer.

But God never requires the impossible. If you live "twenty-five or thirty miles from an ecclesia" and are "prevented from travelling through infirmity or want of means," you will not be expected to break bread with a company of believers. You can call Christ to remembrance in solitude, which, though not so refreshing as to do it in company with others, will be better than living in entire neglect of a good commandment.

The Christadelphian, June 1874

25 Verily I say unto you, I will drink no more of the fruit of the vine, until that day that I drink it new in the kingdom of God.

My table in my kingdom

The literal eating and drinking by itself would be a poor affair to make the subject of promise; but as taking with it the sharing of his friendship, the participation of his glory, the enjoyment of his love and fellowship, the inheritance of his throne, and his glorious immortal nature, it becomes a very great and precious promise indeed without abating a jot of its literalness....

Some ... may reason that if Christ is glorious and real and immortal, the act of eating seems the more incongruous because it has to do with the sustaining of life, and is associated with the phenomenon of corruption.

They may ask, what need for an immortal to eat? What place in an incorruptible body for a process involving chemical decomposition? There is an answer. First, we must not govern possibility by our experience. The works of God are without measure, and without limit in their diversity. It does not follow that because we depend upon eating for living that therefore the act of eating has no higher function in higher organizations.

It does not follow that because eating is associated with corruption in our experience, that therefore corruption is a corollary of eating in whatever nature of body that act takes place. Even our present observations of nature would forbid narrow conclusions on the subject. We see even now that the power of chemically absorbing the elements of food is in proportion to the electrical and functional vigour of the constitution.

An enfeebled organization will scarcely take half the nutriment out of food, while a powerful organization will absorb it pretty completely, and reject but a small residuum.

Is it impossible to conceive of an absolutely complete absorption? It is evident that there is an ascending scale of power in this respect in even the animal organization of present experience; and by analogy, it is a matter of irresistible conclusion that in the spiritual body which is powerful (1 Cor. 15:43), this power exists in perfection, and can assimilate food to the last grain of substance without a remnant for corruption.

We must remember that all substance is spirit at the root; for out of God all things have come, and in Him they subsist. What we call matter is His energy made concrete in limited forms and conditions according to His wisdom.

Consequently, a spiritual body will presumably possess the functional capacity of reducing all substance to its first element, spirit, and assimilating food to its own spirit nature, possessed by the eater. This excludes the very idea of corruption, and at the same time, it preserves to us the act of eating without the association of corruption which belongs to present experience.

Eating in the spiritual nature will therefore be not merely a possibility, but probably a source of delight of which dull animal organisms know little: for the act of converting food, not into blood but into spirit itself will probably yield a sensation of pleasure as far surpassing the gratification of the animal palate as the spiritual body exceeds the animal body in life, glory and power.

Such a view of the case enables us to realise the act of eating and drinking in the spirit state as the occasion of much spiritual joy and friendship among those who partake together. Even now the act of eating together is the highest act of fellowship, and the occasion of the most refined enjoyment of which the human mind is capable, all other things being equal.

How much more must this be the case when weakness is eliminated, and when therefore there will be an absence of the many drawbacks to social enjoyment arising in the present state from feebleness in every function.

Seasons 1.93.

26 And when they had sung an hymn, they went out into the mount of Olives.

Celebrating with the Passover psalms

On the night before Passover, the Lord met with his disciples in the upper room. By necessity, he had to keep the feast in advance, for when the Passover lambs were slain the next day in the Court of the Priests, he also would be offered.

Having attended the Passover since his youth, Christ knew all the details for keeping the feast. But this one was special, for it was ordained by himself, and he earnestly wished to eat it with his disciples before he suffered (Luke 22:15).

Each family observed Passover as a unit, and the apostles, in company with their Lord, became a new family at this special celebration. But they were more than a new family, for the next few days would mark a turning point in God's dealings with His people.

The Hallel, sung in every household. 5 was heard in the guestchamber, just as it was sung by the Levites in the temple. 6 Little did they know it, but the singers who offered praise in the Court of the Priests were about to be superseded.

Their song would be removed in the overthrow of Judah's Commonwealth, but before that tragedy fell a new order of priests would be consecrated and a new course of singers confirmed, into whose hands the spiritual legacy of the House of Asaph would be passed.

When the meal was ended, the Lord and his disciples sang the second part of the Hallel before leaving the house. Three of the four psalms closed with the Halleluyah that gave the hymnal set its name. 7 But the final psalm was different. 8 It described the deepest experiences of Messiah, from his impending sacrifice to his ultimate deliverance, from his work as a suffering servant to his role as a victorious ruler.

That moment of song would be forever marked in the memory of the men who stood with Christ in the upper room. It arose from a special choir of twelve male voices, the exact number for each course of the singers ordained by David, when Asaph was first put in charge. 9

Only later would the disciples realise the full significance of the words, but Christ sang them in full awareness of their meaning. Theirs had been the privilege of hearing the voice of their Lord in song, an honour beyond compare. And curiously, this psalm opened and closed with the same memorable verse:

"O give thanks unto Yahweh; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever" (Psalm 118:1,29).

The verse which Christ uttered in solemn cantillation was the golden theme of the psalm of the House of Asaph. In his mortal life, they were the last words that he sang. And by the resurrection morn, there was exhibited, to the joyful amazement of these same men, the evidence that Yahweh was indeed good, and that for his beloved Son His mercy had endured forever.

The ark of His presence had been guarded from all harm, and in him was to be seen a shining of the Shekinah glory such as had never been seen before.

For forty days the Lord remained with them, during which time he gave evidence that he was alive, by many infallible proofs. It was important for them to know that all that they did subsequently was connected to his living priesthood, administered from heaven, whilst they remained as his representatives on earth.

If the House of Asaph had survived until this moment, the impending destruction of the temple and its services made it vital that their legacy of song be passed on to another choir. The ecclesia left behind by Christ might not have been related to the House of Asaph by fleshly descent, but they would prove to be in every respect their spiritual offspring, and

worthy successors of their role.

5."In the family celebration of the Passover night it (the Hallel) is divided into two parts, the one half (Psalms 113-114) being sung before the repast, before emptying the second festal cup, and the other half (Psalm 115-118), after the repast, after the filling of the fourth cup, to which the hymnesantes (Matthew 26:30; Mark 14:26) ... may refer" (Commentary on the Old Testament, C. F. Keil & F. Delitzsch, volume 5, page 704).

6. The Mishnah records that the Levites sang the Hallel psalms at Passover (Pesahim 5.7), and this song was heard in the court while the Passover lambs were being slain.

7. Psalms 115,116,117.

8 Psalm 118 concluded the second part of the Hallel, which was the "hymn" (hymnesantes) referred to at the supper (Mark 14:26). Note the marginal reference to "psalm", and to other uses of the word, where the context is also suggestive of psalms (Acts 16:25; Hebrews 2:12).

9 That each course numbered twelve men is derived from the calculation given (1 Chronicles 25:7). There were 288 instructed singers divided into twenty-four courses, resulting in twelve singers for each course. In the Gospel account, it was the Lord and eleven others who sang this last Hallel before leaving the room, Judas having already departed (John 13:30; 14:31).

Bro Roger Lewis - The House of Asaph Ch 14

27 And Jesus saith unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered.

'For it is written'

Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the Lord of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones. Zech 13: 7


"Stumbled." is the idea -- confounded -- perplexed. Their minds were fixed on him in his kingly capacity. Something was about to happen for which they were totally unprepared, though he had sought to prepare them.

Nazareth Revisited Ch 53

33 And he taketh with him Peter and James and John, and began to be sore amazed, and to be very heavy;

Sore amazed and very heavy

From this terrible ordeal Jesus shrank with fearful apprehension. He wished not to suffer it, he desired to avoid it. It was his will to escape it, "if it were possible," that is, if the Father's objects in the case could admit of its omission. It was in his power to evade the terrible death before him if he had chosen to prefer his own feelings to the divine command.

Here was where the conflict lay. It was the great historic conflict - the will of God versus the wish of man - brought to a focus. ...But what was the nature of the victory? It was the deliberate preference of the Father's will to his own:

"not what I will, but what Thou wilt."

He was enabled to exercise this preference by reason of what he was, as the Son of God. Still, it was by what we may call the operation of reason in the discernment of truth. Paul informs us that-

"For the joy set before him he endured the cross."

This shows us the power of mental view in sustaining him, and leading him to "overcome," which is the term he himself employed in afterwards describing the achievement.

Seasons 2.87

38 Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation. The spirit truly is ready, but the flesh is weak.

The flesh is weak

If there had been nothing in the constitution of the original nature of man impressible by the suggestions of the Serpent, there could have been no transgression. Had Eve's nature been isangelic instead of animal, there would have been no internal response to the external enticement. That internal something was not essentially evil; because, though possessing it, Adam and Eve was pronounced "very good."

It is not evil to admire the beautiful, and to wish to possess it; to desire to gratify the taste, and to aspire to the wisdom of "the gods," or Elohim: but all this becomes evil when its attainment is sought by crossing the limit forbidden of God.

The seeking to attain by crossing the line, Paul teaches was the result, not of innate wickedness, but of deception. The Serpent beguiled Eve. Had she been certain of the consequences she would not have transgressed. She had no experience of evil. It might be a very agreeable thing for any thing she knew; and highly promotive of happiness.

God had warned her of danger in the pursuit of knowledge through disobedience; but then, if they were to go back to the dust, that is, to die, what was the meaning of that Tree of Lives? Did not God mean something else? If they crossed the line in relation to the Tree of Knowledge, could they not eat also of that other tree, and live forever?

There seemed to her mind to be an uncertainty about returning to the dust, when she lost sight of the law. This was "the weakness of the flesh." There was no uncertainty of consequences so long as she thought God meant what he said; but being deceived on this point, and so made doubtful of it, she ventured to experiment. But, however doubtful of what might be, if she had adhered strictly to what God had said, she would still have continued "very good."

"Weakness," mental and physical, is an original element of animal nature; as "power" is of the angelic. Adam's nature was "very good" as an animal nature; but still it was weak, and therefore deceivable and terminable.

This weakness is founded in the unfitness of air, electricity, blood, and food, to maintain organized dust, or flesh, in life and power forever. The life-principles being weak, the flesh is weak in all its operations, mental and physical.

Herald of the Kingdom and Age to Come, Sept 1852

Any sin is sin

Any conscious, deliberate sin, even the most trivial is a complete break in our lifeline of love that unites us to God.

The depth of sin is no direct measure of the heart, or of a man's relative wickedness. A small, mean sin, done consciously and deliberately, and brushed off with a belittling of its seriousness, and excuses, and self-justification, when pointed out, can reveal a far more sordid and poverty-stricken state of heart than a great failure-stumbled into, or committed under pressure-that is sincerely and bitterly and openly repented of.

We cannot judge degrees of guilt, or magnitude of sin. We do not know how severely God is testing a man, or what great work God is preparing him for.

We can, and must, determine between factual right and wrong, and we must follow the scripturally required course in relation to it. But we cannot judge, we cannot condemn, we cannot discern motives or relative degrees of guilt. That is God's prerogative.

Bro Growcott - BYT 4.7.

72 And the second time the cock crew. And Peter called to mind the word that Jesus said unto him, Before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice. And when he thought thereon, he wept.

It may seem strange that Peter the impulsive, the weak, and (by the Lord's denial) the dishonoured, should have been afterwards chosen as the Spirit's mouthpiece on the Day of Pentecost, and employed in the specially honourable office of holder and user of the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven, in opening the doors thereof officially and finally for Jew and Gentile, first for the Jews on the Day of Pentecost, and afterwards for the Gentiles at the house of Cornelius.

...Peter, the humbled... He would always remember the shame of having publicly denied the Lord. He would always feel like Paul, after him, that he was not worthy to be called an apostle. He was therefore qualified to fill the highest station in the ministration of the Spirit without being lifted up, for which his undoubted affectionate loyalty fitted him on another side of his character.

Nazareth Revisited Ch 52