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Thoughts on Oblation

[Explanatory note: These comments were made at the observance of the Lord’s Supper on January 3, 2015 at Zion’s Outpost Restoration Branch. The Lord’s Supper had been administered just prior to these remarks.]

Then said he also concerning him who bade to the wedding, When thou makest a dinner, or a supper, call not thy friends, nor thy brethren, neither thy kinsmen, nor rich neighbors; lest they also bid thee again, and a recompense be made thee. But when thou makest a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind, And thou shalt be blessed; for they cannot recompense thee; for thou shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the just. And when one of them who sat at meat with him, heard these things, he said unto him, Blessed is he who shall eat bread in the kingdom of God (Luke 14:12-15).

We have just finished eating at the banquet table of Jesus Christ. He is Lord of Lords and King of Kings, Master, Savior, yea, the very Eternal God. His table is the richest and most bountiful table to which men and women can be invited. We were given access to his table because Jesus believes the principles of his own parables.

We are among those people mentioned in Luke 14:13. We cannot even imagine, let alone give, what is required to recompense (pay back) the Lord for his grace toward us. We are not able to come close to matching his riches, grace and mercy. We are, therefore, the poor, the maimed, the lame and the blind.

Yet, Jesus did call us and he invited us to feast at his table. Today, we enjoyed the riches of heaven at this Sacrament meal, but this is only a preview of things to come.

Jesus told parables to help us recognize his glory, but he also used the parables to teach the principles we need to live in a manner that is kingdom-like.

In Luke 14:12 Jesus instructed people, when holding a feast, not to call their family, friends and people who can repay or recompense them in the future. He said, call the people who can’t repay you anything. This instruction should not be understood as never invite family, friends and the rich, but to not only invite those people. Remember to invite the widow, the orphan, the homeless and the poor.

Jesus is saying that being hospitable is not about looking good or personally gaining anything from it. He is speaking directly to the motive of our actions.

Stewardship, the use of the resources God gives us, is a response to the ministry of Jesus Christ. It is an act of faith that God will not forsake us. It is an act of charity. That is the motive that Jesus is speaking of here.

Luke 14:15 records the statement that Jesus endorses, “Blessed is he who shall eat bread in the kingdom of heaven.” Stewardship, your response to the ministry of Jesus Christ, is not designed to make sure that you have a seat reserved at the Lamb’s feast. It is designed to help others gain a seat at that table.

For those who are under the gospel covenant, Jesus is holding a place for you. The point of the parable asked by Jesus is, “What about your neighbor, the transient and the prisoner?” Does your stewardship, your faith in God’s provision, allow you to trust and obey God to the extent that you can help another to gain a seat at the table of the Lord? This is stewardship as an act of charity.

Blessed is he who shall eat bread in the kingdom of heaven.

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