Lenten Devotional April 14, 2022


Mark 14:12-25

12 On the first day of Unleavened Bread, when the Passover lamb is sacrificed, his disciples said to him, “Where do you want us to go and make the preparations for you to eat the Passover?” 13 So he sent two of his disciples, saying to them, “Go into the city, and a man carrying a jar of water will meet you; follow him, 14 and wherever he enters, say to the owner of the house, ‘The Teacher asks, Where is my guest room where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?’ 15 He will show you a large room upstairs, furnished and ready. Make preparations for us there.” 16 So the disciples set out and went to the city, and found everything as he had told them; and they prepared the Passover meal.

17 When it was evening, he came with the twelve. 18 And when they had taken their places and were eating, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me, one who is eating with me.” 19 They began to be distressed and to say to him one after another, “Surely, not I?” 20 He said to them, “It is one of the twelve, one who is dipping bread into the bowl with me. 21 For the Son of Man goes as it is written of him, but woe to that one by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been better for that one not to have been born.”

22 While they were eating, he took a loaf of bread, and after blessing it he broke it, gave it to them, and said, “Take; this is my body.” 23 Then he took a cup, and after giving thanks he gave it to them, and all of them drank from it. 24 He said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many. 25 Truly I tell you, I will never again drink of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.”


The Rev. Carmen D. Cox Harwell ’01

No one wants to be singled out, called out, or the object of a negative shout-out when we’ve done the wrong thing. We know that “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God,” (Rom. 3:23) but no one wants their “shortness” to be put on blast for the world to see, judge, or condemn. In this text, that’s what Jesus does during an evening of fellowship with his disciples over the Passover meal.

After settling into an upper room, out of nowhere, Jesus drops a bomb-shell over the evening: “Truly, I tell you, one of you will betray me” (vv. 17). Distressed by such an emphatic accusation, the disciples questioned who it might be because, “Surely,” they all said, “not I?” Without singling out, calling out, or giving a shout-out of the disciple’s name, Jesus distresses the brothers further: “It is one of you—one who is dipping bread into the bowl with me” (vv. 20). The disciples think, What? We all have—all 12 of us have dipped our hand and our bread into the bowl with you. Are you saying that not just one of us will betray you, but all 12 of us will? 

No one wants to be “that one” who is singled out, or called out with a shout-out of woe for betraying the Lord. But the truth is that we are all “that one”! Yet even betrayal can’t keep Jesus from going to the cross for us!


Father, we admit we have dipped our hand into the bowl of betrayal. Help us to be more faithful. Single us out for mercy. Call us out when we are unforgiving. Shout-out our name among the many who will one day “drink of the fruit of the vine,” new with you, in the kingdom of God.” Amen! 

About Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

Rooted in the Reformed tradition, Pittsburgh Theological Seminary is committed to the formation of women and men for theologically reflective ministry and to scholarship in service to the global Church of Jesus Christ.

Become a Student

Certificate Programs

Special Programs


In addition to their on-campus duties, our faculty are experts in their fields and are available to preach and teach. Learn more about their topics of research and writing and invite them to present at your congregation or gathering.


The Seminary hosts a wide range of events—many of them free!—on topics of faith including church planting, mission, vocation, spiritual formation, pastoral care and counseling, archaeology, and many more. Visit our calendar often for a listing of upcoming events.

Visit PTS

Interested in the Seminary? Come visit us!

Stay in Touch with PTS

Sign-up to receive the Seminary's newsletters: Seminary News (monthly), Center for Adaptive and Innovative Ministry (monthly), Continuing Education (monthly), World Mission Initiative (monthly), Metro-Urban Institute (quarterly), and Kelso Museum. Alums, there's also one for you!