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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Come and dine

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"Come And Dine, The Master Calleth"

"Jesus saith unto them, 'Come and dine'" (John 21:12). "Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with Me" (Revelation 3:20)."Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb. These are true words of God" (Revelation 19:9).

Jesus has a table spread
Where the saints of God are fed,
He invites His chosen people, “Come and dine”;
With His manna He doth feed
And supplies our every need:
Oh, ’tis sweet to sup with Jesus all the time!

The last couple of days I have drawn illustrations from a men and boys campout I attended this last weekend in the mountains of central PA. Our main physical activity is biking but if you include eating as a physical activity we did a lot of that as well!

All food is cooked outside by our own men of course (no women at this campout); most over an open fire, although one of the men brings along a propane griddle for pancakes. We eat real good but probably not the best food for long-term health since there's lots of bacon and fried foods. I will share some representative photos below. Forewarning: it just might make you hungry.

An old phrase, "The way to a man's heart is through his stomach", speaks of the value a man places on good cooking. Well, it seems that Jesus used food to reach people's hearts on various occasions as well.

Come and dine
Today we share three daily texts regarding eating. "Come and dine" is a literal invitation from Jesus during a post resurrection experience as He welcomed the disciples to join Him for a breakfast he had prepared over a hot fire beside the lake shore (John 21:1-14). Other versions state, “Come and have breakfast.”  It was the first men's breakfast of note, a staple fixture in many churches these days.

Breakfast was followed by one of His final teachings prior to the Ascension. The disciples had been fishing all night and were surely very hungry. Any of us who have worked real hard know this type of hunger. How considerate of our Lord to meet their physical needs prior to ministering to their spiritual. When they got off the boat He had fish grilling over a fire and bread. "Jesus came and took the bread and gave it to them, and the fish likewise" (v. 13).

The disciples came to land,
Thus obeying Christ’s command,
For the Master called unto them, “Come and dine”;
There they found their heart’s desire,
Bread and fish upon the fire;
Thus He satisfies the hungry every time.

Jesus knocking
The second text is a familiar passage from the Book of Revelation and is often used in an appeal for someone to open his or her heart to Christ.* In fact one of the most famous works in Christian art is based on this passage. Christ has promised He will come in and eat with anyone who opens the door, "If anyone hears my voice and opens the door."

"I will come in and eat with him, and he with me". Eating here conveys the idea of close fellowship (Luke 19:5-7; John 13). Jesus says He will "eat with him" through ongoing fellowship as we hear His voice and opens the door.

Our biggest and most important meal though is future, the promise of dining with Christ at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. "Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb." Perhaps I will be seated right next to you or across from you on that day when we enjoy the feast of a lifetime and fellowship divine!

Great Banquet

Soon the Lamb will take His bride
To be ever at His side,
All the host of Heaven will assembled be;
O ’twill be a glorious sight,
All the saints in spotless white;
And with Jesus they will feast eternally.

Today we urge our readers to have living fellowship with our Living Lord. Experience the joy in the old song that states, "And He walks with me, and He talks with me, And He tells me I am His own; And the joy we share as we tarry there, None other has ever known."

“Come and dine,” the Master calleth, “Come and dine”;
You may feast at Jesus’ table all the time;
He who fed the multitude, turned the water into wine,
To the hungry calleth now, “Come and dine.”

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer:
Father, just as we enjoy the nourishment of food at mealtime to grow us physically, so we enjoy the nourishment of Your Word that builds us spiritually. We have tasted and seen that You are good. Fill us to overflowing through the reading and application of Your Holy Word and through the daily fellowship of Your Holy Spirit. We gladly accept Jesus' invitation to come and dine at His table of forgiveness, compassion, humility, acceptance, and joy beyond measure. It is a table fit for royalty and peasant alike, for we are one and the same in the eyes of our Creator, the King of kings and Lord of lords. Amen.

Here are more photos from my camping trip to the mountains this last weekend. Today's photos focus on our fine dining with sundry foods all cooked over open fires.

Men and boys campout 9/6/14 (Photo by Mike Book)
On a cool mountain morning there's nothing like sitting around the fire with a hot cup of coffee. Not sure what's in the skillet (Photo by our friend Mike Book)

Men and boys campout 9/6/14

A huge cast iron griddle being used in preparation for breakfast  (this is only one of them). Looks so good I could enjoy this meal again this morning.

Men and boys campout 9/6/14
Lee frying up the potatoes seasoned with sizzling onions and peppers.

Men and boys campout 9/6/14
An old tree stump provided a great foundation for a work table. Bill and Nelson are preparing to mix items for the griddle, including chicken of the forest mushrooms collected under trees.

Men and boys campout 9/6/14
Many hands make light work! (Many hands also make food disappear.)

Men and boys campout 9/6/14
Jay takes pride in his BBQ chicken. By the looks of this photo, he has earned the title of "Barbeque Poultry King".

If you weren't hungry when you opened Daily Encouragement you might be after viewing all these food photos!

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Come And Dine"
Gary Chapman   Written by Charles B. Widmeyer 1906, wrote the song to go with a ser­mon he was pre­par­ing on John 21:12.

"The Marriage Supper Of The Lamb"  Video  The Hoppers

"In the Garden"  Video  The Mullins

"Power Of The Cross"  Video 
Steve Green

* Some Bible commentators feel Revelation 3:20 should not be used evangelistically but in context refers to His knocking on the door of the lukewarm church. See here.

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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