Wednesday narrative 4

WEDNESDAY BEFORE EASTER

THE LAST SUPPER AND THE WASHING OF THE FEET

 

Chapters 75 and 76 of The Gospel of the Holy Twelve

At evening the Master came into the house, and there were gathered with him the Twelve and their fellows: Peter, Jacob, Thomas, John, Simon, Matthew, Andrew, Nathanael, James, Thaddeus, Jude, Philip, and their companions (and there was also Judas Iscariot, who by men was numbered with the twelve until the time when he should be exposed). They were all clad in garments of white linen, pure and clear, for linen is the righteousness of the saints; and each had the colour of his tribe.

But the Master was clad in his pure white robe, white overall, without seam or spot. They contended among themselves as to which of them should be esteemed the greatest; wherefore he said to them, “He who is greatest among you let him be the one who serves.” Jesus said, “With desire do I want to eat this Passover with you before I suffer in order to establish the Memorial of my Oblation for the service and salvation of all. For behold the hour comes when the Son of man shall be betrayed into the hands of sinners.”

One of the twelve said to him, “Lord, is it I?” And he answered, “He to whom I give the bread dipped in wine, the same is he.” Iscariot said unto him, “Master, behold the unleavened bread, the mingled wine, and the oil and the herbs, but where is the lamb that Moses commanded?” (For Judas had bought the lamb, but Jesus had forbidden that it should be killed.) John spoke in the Spirit, saying, “Behold the Lamb of God, the good Shepherd which gives his life for the sheep.”

And Judas was troubled at these words, for he knew that he should betray him. But again Judas said, “Master, is it not written in the law that a lamb must be slain for the Passover within the gates?”

And Jesus answered, “If I am lifted up on the cross then indeed shall the lamb be slain, but woe to him by whom it is delivered into the hands of the slayers; it were better for him had he not been born. Verily, I say to you, for this end have I come into the world that I may put away all blood offerings and the eating of the flesh of the beasts and the birds that are slain by men. In the beginning, God gave to all the fruits of the trees and the seeds and the herbs for food, but those who loved themselves more than God or their fellows, corrupted their ways and brought diseases into their bodies and filled the earth with lust and violence. Not by shedding innocent blood, therefore, but by living a righteous life, shall you find the peace of God. You call me the Christ of God and you say well, for I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.Walk you in the Way, and you shall find God. Seek you the Truth and the Truth shall make you free. Live in the Life, and you shall see no death. All things are alive in God, and the Spirit of God fills all things. Keep you the commandments. Love your God with all your heart and love your neighbour as yourself. On these hang all the law and the prophets. And the sum of the law is this – Do not do unto others as you would not want others to do unto you. Do unto others as you would want others to do unto you. Blessed are they who keep this law, for God is manifested in all creatures. All creatures live in God, and God is hidden in them.”

After these things, Jesus dipped the bread and gave it to Judas Iscariot, saying, “What thou do, do quickly.” He then, having received the bread, immediately went out, and it was light. When Judas Iscariot had gone out, Jesus said, “Now is the Son of man glorified among his twelve, and God is glorified in him. And verily I say to you, they who receive you receive me, and they who receive me receive the Father-Mother Who sent me, and you who have been faithful to the truth shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.”

One said unto him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” And Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world, neither are all Israel which are called Israel. Those in every nation who do not defile themselves with cruelty, who are righteous, who love mercy, who reverence all the works of God, and who give succour to all who are weak and oppressed – the same are the Israel of God.”

The Paschal Supper being ended, the lights were kindled, for it was evening. Jesus rose from the table and laid aside his garment, and wrapped a towel around his waist; and pouring water into a basin, he washed the feet of each of the fourfold Twelve and wiped them with the towel that was wrapped around him. One of them said, “Lord, you shall not wash my feet.” Jesus said, “If I do not wash you, you have no part with me.” And he answered, “Lord, wash not only my feet, but my head and my hands.”

He said to him, “They who have come out of the bath, need not but to wash their feet, and they are clean all over.” Then putting on the over garment of pure white linen without spot or seam, he sat at the table and said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? You call me Lord and Master, and if then your Lord and Master has washed your feet, you ought also to wash one another’s feet.

For I have given this example, that as I have done to you so also should you do to others.I give you a new commandment, that you love one another and all the creatures of God. Love is the fulfilling of the law. Love is of God, and God is love. Who loves not, knows not God. Now you are clean through the word which I have spoken to you. By this shall all men know that you are my disciples if you have love one to another and show mercy and love to all creatures of God, especially to those that are weak and oppressed and suffer wrong.

For the whole earth is filled with dark places of cruelty and with pain and sorrow by the selfishness and ignorance of man. I say to you, love your enemies, bless them that curse you and give them light for their darkness, and let the spirit of love dwell within your hearts and be plentiful for all. Again I say to you, love one another and all the creation of God.” When he had finished, they said, “Blessed be God.”

Then he lifted up his voice, and they joined him, saying, “As the hart thirsts for flowing water, so thirsts my soul for thee, O God.” And when they had finished, one brought to him an incense burner full of live coals, and he cast frankincense thereon even the frankincense which his mother had given him in the day of his manifestation, and the sweetness of the odour filled the room.

Then Jesus, placing before him the platter, and behind it the chalice, and lifting up his eyes to heaven, gave thanks for the goodness of God in all things and unto all, and after that he took in his hands the unleavened bread and blessed it; the wine likewise mingled with water and blessed it; chanting the Invocation of the Holy Name the Sevenfold, calling upon the thrice Holy Father-Mother in Heaven to send down the Holy Spirit and make the bread to be his body, even the Body of the Christ, and the fruit of the vine to be his Blood, even the Blood of the Christ, for the remission of sins and everlasting life, to all who obey the gospel.

Then lifting up the Oblation towards heaven, he said, “The Son who is also the Daughter of man is lifted up from the earth, and I shall draw all men to me; then it shall be known of the people that I am sent from God.” These things being done, Jesus spoke these words, lifting his eyes to heaven.

“Abba Amma, the hour is come; Glorify thy Son that Thy Son may be glorified in thee.Yea, Thou have glorified me, Thou have filled my heart with fire, Thou have set lamps on my right hand and on my left, so that no part of my being should be without light. Thy Love shines on my right hand and on my left, so that no part of my being should be without light. Thy Love shines on my right hand and Thy Wisdom on my left. Thy Love, Thy Wisdom, Thy Power are manifest in me. I have glorified Thee on earth; I have finished the work Thou gave me to do. Holy One, keep through Thy Name the Twelve and their fellows whom Thou has given me, that they may be One even as we are One. While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Thy Name, and none of them is lost; for he who went out from us was not of us; nevertheless, I pray for him that he may be restored. Father-Mother, forgive him, for he knows not what he does. And now I come to Thee, and these things I speak in the world that they may have my joy fulfilled in themselves. I give them Thy word, and the world hates them because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. I pray not that Thou should take them out of the world, but that Thou should keep them from evil, while yet in the world. Sanctify them through Thy truth. Thy word is Truth. As thou send me into the world, so also I send them into the world, and for their sakes I sanctify myself that they also may be sanctified through the Truth. Neither pray I for these alone, but for all who shall be added to their number, and for the Two and Seventy also whom I sent forth; yea, and for all who shall believe in the Truth through Thy word, that they also may be one as Thou Most Holy art in me and I in Thee; that they may also be one in Thee, that the world may know that Thou has sent me. Holy Parent, I will also, that they whom Thou has given me, yea all who live, be with me where I am, that they may partake of my glory which thou give me, for Thou love me in all, and all in me, from before the foundations of the world. The world has not known Thee in Thy righteousness, but I know Thee, and these know that Thou have sent me. I have declared unto them Thy Name that the love wherewith Thou have loved me may be in them, and that from them it may abound, even unto all Thy creatures, yea, even unto all.”

These words being ended, they all lifted up their voices with him, and prayed as he taught them, saying, “Our Father-Mother, Who art above and within, Hallowed be Thy sacred Name, in Biune Trinity. In Wisdom, Love, and Equity Thy Kingdom come to all. Thy holy Will be done always, as in Heaven, so on Earth. Give us day by day to partake of Thy holy Bread, and the fruit of Thy living Vine. As we seek to perfect others, so perfect us in Thy Christ. Show upon us Thy goodness, that to others we may show the same. In the hour of trial, deliver us from evil.For Thine are the Kingdom, the Power, and the Glory. From the Ages of ages, now, and to the Ages of ages. Amen.”

Then our Master took the holy bread and broke it and the fruit of the vine also and mingled it, and having blessed and hallowed both, casting a fragment of the bread into the cup, he blessed the holy union. Then he gave the bread which he had hallowed to his disciples saying, “Eat, for this is my body, even the body of the Christ, which is given for the salvation of the soul and the body.”

Likewise, he gave to them the fruit of the vine which he had blessed saying to them, “Drink, for this is my blood, even the blood of the Christ which is shed for you and for many, for the salvation of the soul and the body.” And when all had partaken, he said unto them, “As often as ye assemble together in my name, make this offering in memory of me, even the bread of everlasting life and the wine of eternal salvation; and eat and drink thereof with pure heart, and you shall receive of the substance and the life of God which dwells in me.”

When they had sung a hymn, Jesus stood up in the midst of his apostles, and going to him who was their Centre, as in a solemn dance, they rejoiced in him. Then he went out to the Mount of Olives, and his disciples followed him. Judas Iscariot had gone to the house of Caiaphas and said to him, “Behold he has celebrated the Passover within the gates, with the Mazza in place of the lamb. I indeed bought a lamb, but he forbade that it should be killed, and the man of whom I bought it is witness.”

And Caiaphas rent his clothes and said, “Truly this is a Passover of the Law of Moses. He has done the deed which is worthy of death, for it is a weighty transgression of the law. What need of further witness? Yes, even now two robbers have broken into the temple and stolen the book of the law, and this is the end of his teaching. Let us tell these things to the people who follow him, for they will fear the authority of the law.”

One that was standing by as Judas came out, said to him, “Do you think that they will put him to death?” Judas said, “No, for he will do some mighty work to deliver himself out of their hands, just as when they in the synagogue in Capernaum rose up against him and brought him to the brow of the hill that they might throw him down headlong, and did he not pass safely through their midst? He will surely escape them now also and proclaim himself openly and set up the Kingdom of which he spoke.”