And they went and found it just as He had told them, and they prepared the Passover (Luke 22:13).
Read Deuteronomy 16:1-8.
Jesus' instructions must surely have challenged the faith of Peter and John. What were the odds they would see a man carrying a jar of water? That he would lead them to a house with a large guest room, furnished and available? Yet this is exactly what they experienced. Surely, it strengthened their faith when one by one, Jesus' strange instructions worked out for them.
But was there another reason Jesus gave such cryptic instructions? He was well aware that one of His 12 disciples was carefully watching for an opportunity to betray Him in the absence of the crowds. When Peter and John asked Jesus where they were to prepare the Passover, it is the moment Judas was waiting for. What better occasion to find Jesus away from the crowd, in a house that can be surrounded, with no way of escape?
If Jesus had identified the house He had in mind, Judas could have found a way to sneak out and inform the Jewish leaders. Then there would have been no time to eat with His disciples, to institute Holy Communion, or to prepare Himself through prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane. Each of these things is essential, and Jesus won't permit Judas to gain that knowledge until the time is right.
In a similar way, as Jesus guides us through life, He keeps our enemies in check and thwarts their plans to harm us-unless it suits His loving, divine purposes for us and for them.
THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus, we are surrounded by spiritual enemies who wish to destroy our faith and do us eternal harm. As You watch over us and limit what they can do, give us loving hearts to share Your Word so that You may bring them to repentance and faith. Amen.
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