Summary: This is a sermon focusing on the Lord’s supper
Many occasions at Sandridge are connected with food—Thanksgiving, Christmas, Homecomings, Wednesday night suppers, etc. In fact when you come early and begin to prepare and begin to smell the aromas of the meal, I often long for the ringing of the bell that proclaims dinner is served, Come to the table This morning, Jesus has set the table and is inviting you and I, “Come to His Table.” But before we can come to His table there are several things we need to remember.
First, Before we come to the table and sit down and enjoy a meal, we need clean hands
You don’t work in the garden or garage and then come inside, sit down, and eat dinner. We wash up first. This is why the Bible tells us to examine our lives before coming to His Table. We must look into our lives and see if there is anything in our lives that needs to be confessed and cleaned up. When we come to Jesus with remorse and repentance, we find forgiveness, restoration, and an invitation to His table
Second, before we come to the table we need to be hungry.
Before dining, we need a good appetite. What would happen if you were invited to someone’s house for dinner, and an hour before the meal you ate a bag of chips, a Coke, and a package of Twinkies? After all this junk food, you’d have little appetite for the good stuff! cup God offers us a substantive meal—the Bread and Cup won’t fill us up physically, but they will satisfy our spiritual hunger. When we stuff ourselves with the junk food of sin we lose our appetite for the banquet God has prepared for us. We need to “taste and see” the satisfying goodness of the Lord (Psalm 34:8).
We are in the world, but we don’t have to be of the world. We are exposed to sin, but we can resist temptation. Do we get an appetite for what God has for us, when we’ve been dwelling on things below, rather than things above? When our perspective is fixed on temporal things, we can get caught up in that which has no lasting value. Jesus promises, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.”
Third when we come to the table we must enjoy the moment.
There is actually a restaurant in New Jersey called “Eat It and Beat It”. I hear the chairs in places like MacDonalds and Burger King are designed so that people won’t get too comfortable, so they’ll eat, leave, and make room for more customers. In Europe, when you sit at a table, it’s yours for as long as you wish—sit down for lunch, and linger the whole afternoon if you like. No one is urging you to go. Sometimes we’re in such a hurry that we don’t enjoy our food; we inhale it and rush on to something else!
In the same way when we partake in the Lord’s Supper, we should come to savor the moment, to linger - To reflect and remember. When we come to the Lord’s Table, our spiritual meal should be the focus of why we’re here.
Fourth when we come to the table there must be harmony and unity
. Not everyone shared the same viewpoint, and the enjoyment of the meal got ruined as they argued. We can’t expect everyone in our congregation to agree on every issue, but we are expected to get along. What we did agree on was our unity in Christ. What united us was greater than what divided us.
Fifth, when we come to the table we must have a grateful heart
When we come to the Lord’s Table, we need to eat with gratitude, to not take it for granted. God provided manna, miraculous food, to the Jewish nation in the wilderness, and all they did was complain. We need to appreciate the cost of this meal. There’s a famous Swedish art film that’s a parable of grace, Babbette’s Feast, in which a young woman uses her inheritance to prepare a wonderful gourmet meal for her friends. She obtains the most costly ingredients and prepares a banquet worthy of a 4-star restaurant. Unfortunately, some of her guests don’t fully appreciate her gift.
Jesus has prepared a meal for us that cost Him His life. We should appreciate the sacrifice of our Savior; otherwise we miss the whole point of this meal!
Let us now prepare to approach the Table of our Lord.