Tag Archives: meals

Let’s Eat!

 

 

Do you have anything to eat?

“While they were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, ‘Peace be with you.’”  They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost.  He said to them, “ Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds? Look at my hands and my feet.  It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.”  When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet.  And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, “Do you have anything here to eat?”  They gave  piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate it in their presence.  (Luke 24: 36-43  NIV)

We are following Jesus after his resurrection through the Feast of Pentecost.  Jesus has met with the women at the tomb.  He told them to go tell his disciples to meet him in Galilee. Mary Magdalene lingers a bit and is greeted by Jesus.  She tries to hold on to him but Jesus tells her he has to return to “My Father and your Father, to My God and your God.”

The women run to tell the disciples. After telling them all they had seen, the Bible tells us the disciples did not believe the women, “because their words seemed to them like nonsense.” (Luke 24:11. NIV)  Peter and John, however, had to be sure.  They both “got up and ran to the tomb.” Luke 24:12  John tells us that “the other disciple with Peter (John himself) out ran Peter and reached the tomb first.  What a foot race that must have been!  “Peter saw and left wondering what had happened (Luke 24:12)  but John saw and believed.”( John 20:8)  But they still did not understand.

It is now evening and the disciples are in Jerusalem having what I believe is a most lively discussion of all the things they have seen that day.   The eleven disciples are there, the women are there and the two from Emmaus have joined them.  While they are talking about the past days’ events, “Jesus himself stood among them and said, Peace be with you.”

What a meeting that must have turned out to be.  First, Jesus has to calm their fears.  Then he asks, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds?” (Luke 24:38)  How many times would he have to tell them?  “Don’t let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. In my Father’s house are many dwelling; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you.” (John 14:1 NAS)  But standing there, after all they had seen and been through, how could this be?   How many times have we doubted what Jesus tells us in His Word?  How many times have we forgotten that he is always with us, that his promises to us are all “Yes and Amen”?

Then Jesus shows them His humanity.  He shows them his hands and feet. But they still did not believe but this time Luke tells us it is “because of joy and amazement.” (Luke 24:41 NIV)

Were you ever so happy to see someone unexpectedly that you said, “Oh my goodness, I can not believe it is you. You are here. What are you doing here?”  In my mind, I can see the scene playing out now.  The smiles and the dancing and the squeals of delight.

Now the next line in the text just brought the reality of Jesus humanity home to me.  “Do you have anything here to eat?”  I almost laughed out loud as I reread the account in Luke.

See my hand and feet!  Jesus arrives in the room unannounced!  NOW LET’S EAT!

Luke simply concludes the story, “They gave him a piece of broiled fish and he took it and ate it in their presence.”  Was He so hungry after three days in the grave?  He had been really busy the last few days.  He had gone back to offer the blood sacrifice to the Father.  Another meeting I would loved to have been there to see, that moment when the Father God accepted and received the sacrifice for all men.  The redemption is complete.  Grace has won!   The New Covenant is now in operation.

Jesus will now spend the next 40 days teaching the disciples how to walk in the new covenant. In John we read the evenings benediction. “Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.  And with that He breathed on them and said, “Received the Holy Spirit.  If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.” (John 20:21-23)

The Word is so real and so amazing to see all that was done for me and you.  Jesus was a man, human yet divine.  He loved us so much that He became one of us and paid our debt that we might live with Him forever in His prepared place. Oh How I Love Him!  Just wondering what it will be like when we are seated with Jesus at the marriage supper and He says, “Let’s eat!”

Thank you, Jesus.

Thank you that you help us through  your Holy Spirit to make alive Your Word!

Hebrews 4:12 “For the Word of God is Alive and Active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit.” (NASB)

This is Amazing Grace  by Phil Wickham

https://youtu.be/zPQKj2Zptr0

Treading on to Pentecost!

May 31, 2017  Fifty Days from Resurrection Sunday

 

Desparate Times-Desparate Measures

#daily devotions

So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree to see him, since Jesus was coming that way. Luke 19:4

You can find the story in of Zacchaeus Luke 19:1-10   Who would think the Bible would include the childhood pastime of climbing trees?  This is why I love God’s Word.  It is honest, real, and touches places in our hearts we have forgotten or sealed off.  It is a sword, a surgical knife:  “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.:  (Hebrews 4:12)

Here is the story of a short guy who desperately wanted to see Jesus so much he let decorum and social norms go flying out of the window.  He did whatever he needed to do to get the answer to his questions.  I wonder if he realized he let his inner child come out?  Did he understand this is where he had to be to “see Jesus?”  The Word tells us we must have the faith of a child (Matthew 18:2-4).  What are the characteristics of a child?  What traits did this short fellow exhibit?  It is worth the time to dig in and see.  We just might let some of our own inhibitions finally go when we see Jesus loved this!

Our short friend is Zacchaeus whose name means pure, innocent.  We learned songs about him in Sunday School as children.  Do you remember the words?  “Zacchaeus was a wee little man, and a wee little man was he.  He climbed up in the sycamore tree for the Lord he wanted to see….”

https://youtu.be/bkd-QFD7vMA
Zacchaeus was a wee little man.

Zacchaeus was a Jew but he was also a “publican” or tax collector for Rome which was tantamount to treason in the eyes of the Jews.  He was very wealthy because tax collectors charged extra for their own income in addition to the taxes Rome levied.  He is described as a “chief” and this is indicative of his position of the “bullies on the playground.”  So not only was he a tax collector he was a leader among this group and loyal to Rome.  This made him “small” in the eyes of his own people.   It is easy as a small person to feel overlooked.   The Word tells us he was short in stature and I know first hand the challenges of being less than 5’2” can cause.  Stairs are steep.  Pants are too long.  Crowds are difficult to navigate and getting lost in a crowd is easy!  If you want to see, you need to be sitting in the front.  And if you really want to see something, you have to arrive early to get a front row seat.  However, when you feel small and “less than” you often want to hide in the back or in the balcony.    This is Zaccheus dilemma.  He is curious about this Jesus.  Jesus is drawing a crowd and Zacchaeus wants to get a good look.  Obviously, Zacchaeus is athletic for he runs ahead and climbs a tree to get a “bird’s eye view.”  Since he is short, he probably had to do a bit of jumping to grab a limb and then do the equivalent of some gymnastics to get up into the tree.  A sycamore tree is known for its wide spreading limbs so Zacchaeus had to monkey walk out on the limb to get over the road.  Are you getting a mental picture?

Like a child, the focus on what Zacchaeus wants and his curiosity outweighs his “less than” feelings or sense of safety.  He is determined to at least get a glimpse of this one they call Jesus who has been doing some amazing things and some are saying He is the Messiah.  As a Jew, he wants to know!

His desperate measure is rewarded by the Savior.  Jesus comes by and stops!  He makes eye contact with Zacchaeus.  He calls him by name (they have never met before–at least not on earth!) and says “come down for I want to go stay at your house tonight.”  ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

Now we discover, Zacchaeus is happy, hospitable, and gracious!  He could care less at this point what is being said!  Someone WANTS to spend time with him!  Remember, he is a Jewish outcast.  To be seen in the company of Zacchaeus would be like being seen with a leper.

Can you see in your holy imagination Zacchaeus jumping down off his perch and racing like a sprinter home to make preparations for his first ever dinner party?  He doesn’t give a rip what people are saying about him and he is thankful Jesus doesn’t care what they are saying about His choice of companions.

Climbing a tree was the best thing this man ever did!  He did what Logan Wolfram wrote in her book, Curious Faith: Rediscovering a Good God with Childlike Wonder, he “exchanged control for curiosity.”   And Froebel wrote in Education of Man, 1826,  “To climb a tree is for a child to discover a new world.”  Zacchaeus found a new life!  Just the Presence of Jesus in his home was conviction enough and Zacchaeus repented of his sin and put his new found FAITH into action by his statement: “Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken anything from any man by false accusation, I restore to him fourfold.”  This statement proves he knew Jewish law! (Exodus 22:1) and is proof of his salvation for faith without works is dead.   (James 2:14-26)

Zacchaeus is sometimes contrasted with the rich young ruler (Luke 18:18-23) who could not part with his wealth in order to follow Jesus.  Zacchaeus proves Matthew 5:8  “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.”

A little man with the heart of a child, saw the Savior and was forever changed.  All because he climbed a tree.  Do you have faith like a child?   I need to remember this when I am tempted to be “grown up” and follow Southern social expectations when Jesus is asking me to reach out to another.   Desperate times call for desperate measures!

Time to go climb a tree!  Time to be a kid.  I want to see Jesus!!!!  Do you?

https://youtu.be/VRFZ-Zhi1JE

Faith Like A Child by Jars of Clay

Treading like a kid,

Yvonne Jones

Dining with Jesus

A Banquet at Levi’s house.

dinner-with-jesus

Matthew 9:10; Mark 2:14;Luke 5:27-28

One of the first dinner parties we see Jesus attending is at the home of Matthew the tax collector.  Jesus calls Matthew to follow him. Matthew leaves his tax collector’s booth and follows Jesus.  Then Matthew invites Jesus and his disciples to his home as dinner guests.

Not only does he invite these new friends but he also invites many other tax collectors and disreputable sinners.  Ooops!!! Big faux pas!!  Just a few verses before, Jesus had healed a paralytic and forgiven his sins.  After a discussion with the religious leaders, Jesus tells the man  to “Stand up, pick up your mat, and go home!” Matthew 9:6 NASB.  The crowds were “awestruck and glorified God, who had given such authority to men.”

Now the religious leaders have followed him to Matthew’s home to keep a closer eye on this man who doesn’t follow “traditional” customs of the Jews. Culturally, it was social suicide to eat with the tax collectors and sinners.  Jesus broke  the rules.  He had come to introduce a new kingdom.  One that was personal.  One that was relational.  One that was moved by compassion more than the traditions of men.  The Pharisees were not pleased with Him.  People had just glorified God because of the things he was doing to heal and meet the people where they were.

Jesus heard their questions to the disciples  and said, “it is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick.  But go and learn what this means: I desire compassion and not sacrifice. for I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners. (Matthew 9:10 NASB)


 

 JESUS DESIRES COMPASSION AND NOT SACRIFICE


          compassion

Jesus desired compassion and not sacrifice. He wanted to connect and what better way to connect with people than to share a meal together. So much did He enjoy eating and communion with people that Luke 19:10 tells us, “The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Look at him!’ A glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!” In Tim Chester’s book, A Meal with Jesus, the author writes, “He did evangelism and discipleship round a table with some grilled fish, a loaf of bread and a pitcher of wine.”

Which now begs the question, what is my testimony to others?  Have we missed a valuable key in ministry?  The church of today seems so disconnected, so self serving, so very much a venue of entertainment.  We find ourselves texting instead of talking but yet airing our angry outbursts on social media.  

The missing connection????  Do we feel desired compassion?  We throw money at causes soothing ourselves into believing we are contributing to a solution.  In reality, people are hurting and desire to have a meal with a friend and have someone to listen and be there for them.

We just spent the weekend with some of our long time friends.  We laughed and had several simple meals together.  It was a  wonderful time enjoying one another.  We all came home refreshed and feeling that was what life is all about.  We all love the Lord. It wasn’t where we stayed, what we ate, or that it rained cats and dogs the entire weekend that made it a great time. It was that we connected.  

We will be looking at some of the other times Jesus dined with people.  In His words, we will, “Go and learn what it means to desire compassion and not sacrifice” as well as other lessons we will see from Dining with Jesus and Feasting with the Father.