"This new commandment I give you: Love one another."
To prepare, please gather:
- A candle
- Bread and Juice or Wine
- A small amount of oil
Call to Worship
Blessed be the God of our salvation,
who bears our burdens
and forgives our sins.
Almighty God, to you all hearts are open,
all desires known; from you no secrets are hid. Cleanse our hearts by the work of your Holy Spirit that we may perfectly love you and worthily magnify your holy name;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Light a candle, and pause to remember
the people of Israel awaiting freedom from Egypt
the disciples in the upper room with Jesus
all who are isolated, alone or with family,
in this season of quarantine.
How can I repay the LORD for all his goodness to me?
I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the LORD.
I will fulfill my vows to the LORD in the presence of all his people.
Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.
O LORD, truly I am your servant; I am your servant, the son of your maidservant; you have freed me from my chains.
I will sacrifice a thank offering to you
and call on the name of the LORD.
I will fulfill my vows to the LORD in the presence of all his people, in the courts of the house of the LORD —
in your midst, O Jerusalem.
Praise the LORD.
All Scripture The Holy Bible New International Version
It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love.
The evening meal was being served, and the devil had already prompted Judas Iscariot, son of Simon, to betray Jesus. Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.
He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?” Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.”
“No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.”
“Then, Lord,” Simon Peter replied, “not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!”
Jesus answered, “A person who has had a bath needs only to wash his feet; his whole body is clean. And you are clean, though not every one of you.” For he knew who was going to betray him, and that was why he said not every one was clean.
When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.
Rub some oil into your hands. Feel the soft texture against rough skin. Smell the richness as its scent permeates the room. Remember the woman anointing Jesus for burial. Remember Jesus washing his disciples' feet, anointing them in love. Read David's words:
" You anoint my head with oil, my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life."
When he was gone, Jesus said, “Now is the Son of Man glorified and God is glorified in him. If God is glorified in him, God will glorify the Son in himself, and will glorify him at once.
My children, I will be with you only a little longer. You will look for me, and just as I told the Jews, so I tell you now: Where I am going, you cannot come.
A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
1 Corinthians 11:23-26
For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
Eat a piece of bread, and drink your juice (or wine). While this is not a communion service, we still can remember what these elements symbolize: the Passover feast commemorating God's miraculous deliverance of the people of Israel; the Last Supper before Jesus died for the sins of the world; the hope of the great feast we will share when Jesus returns. So eat, mindful of those who share this meal around the globe, and in prayer for all who are hungry in the midst of this great upheaval.
Prayer: This is Love
This is love.
Not that you spoke words of comfort,
walked with the unclean and unloved,
shared wisdom, bread and wine,
brought healing into lives
and challenged the status quo.
This is love.
That you spoke the word of God,
walked a painful road to the Cross,
shared living water, bread of life,
brought Salvation to the world
and died for the sake of all.
This is love.
It is a seed
sown in the ground,
and spreads its sweet perfume.
Go in peace this night,
remembering you are the beloved child of God.
It is your forgiveness and salvation which have been won through the work of Jesus of Nazareth,
son of Joseph and Mary, God incarnate.
Wherever you are, you are loved today and always.
Be at rest, for the Spirit of Christ is always at work
to renew and restore our lives and this world.
Peace. Rest. Comfort. All shall be well.