An invitation to come to the table
Published 3:47 pm Monday, November 28, 2022
By PASTOR RANDY REID
Clanton First Assembly of God
One of the most intimate invitations you can extend to an individual is to your dinner table. The front door is where you will chat with a salesperson, but that is typically as far as they get. You may entertain a door-to-door politician, but they usually won’t get passed your front porch. You may allow your insurance man in as far as your living room but that is usually as personal as you get with him. However, a beloved family member or a close personal friend? That is someone you want to share in fellowship around the dinner table.
There is something extra special about breaking bread with loved ones that bring families together and strengthens the bonds of friendship. That is why families gather around the supper table during special holidays. Sharing an activity that is the most basic of man’s daily life, eating, is special. Sharing a meal disarms those with guarded dispositions. It is at the dinner table that communication ensues. It is at the dinner table where conversation takes place, laughter is shared and joy is experienced. We expose ourselves and become vulnerable to one another at the dinner table. We see elements of each other’s personality not typically expressed at the front door or in the living room. I mean, think about it. Where do couples usually spend their first date? It is typically over a shared meal.
Recognizing the intimacy of the dinner table the scriptures uses numerous references regarding the sharing of a meal.
- In Old Testament days, each Sabbath, the priests would gather in the Holy Place of the Temple around the Table of Showbread. They would eat the bread while burning incense to God and fellowshipping one with another.
- The last place Jesus was with His disciples prior to His crucifixion was around the table at the Last Supper.
- In the book of Acts early church members would break bread from house to house. It says that together they would eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart.
Indeed, there is something special about family and friends gathering around the supper table to enjoy a meal and share in fellowship.
In the last chapter of the book of John, the disciples were all together in a boat fishing in the Sea of Galilee. They had been toiling all night long and caught nothing. Finally, Jesus showed up on the shore and yelled out to them to cast their net on the other side of the boat. That yielded for the disciples a catch so great they could not haul it all in. When the disciples reached the shore, Jesus had some fish already cooking on the fire. Then Jesus invited the tired, weary, fishermen to “Come and dine.”
That is the invitation Jesus is issuing to us today. He loves us. We are His family. He wants to bless us and spend time with us. HIs table is spread. Therefore, He is calling us to His table of blessings and fellowship. He is calling us to “Come and Dine.”