When God sets the table

I received an invitation and I know you did too. Did I expect God’s table to be set up in a lovely palace surrounded by tight security? No way - - it was set up in (Psalms 23:5) the presence of my enemies – and I recognized them. One looked like an angel of light and he offered me attractive appetizers which he said would truly enhance the meal. The Flesh urged me to accept it while craftily telling me to see that self-indulgence would not harm me. The World offered an assortment of pills and recommended one that would kill my hunger so I would not want to go to God’s Table. (I think the name of that pill was TV or Smart Phone). Then my To-Do-List deceitfully tried to prove that it was the most important thing on my agenda. Suddenly I felt so tired I just wanted to crash. It seemed like a troop of enemies were closing in on me and I was facing a high wall of obstruction. BUT - - are you listening? I ran through the troop (2 Samuel 22:30) by my God I vaulted over that wall. My defeated enemies slunk off into the darkness. Then I heard the Master call, “Come and dine”. I hurried to take my assigned place at the Table. Two of our Hosts were at the head of the Table. God the Father and God the Son. They gave a loving welcome to all of us. Every place had a plate but I noticed that for new believers there was a sippy cup (1 Peter 2:2) for milk – for weak Christians there was a spoon (Hebrews 5:12) for spoon-fed soft, mushy stuff – for mature Christians there was a fork (Hebrews 5:14) for strong meat and a knife (2 Timothy 2:15) to rightly divide it.
Then the Third One of our Hosts entered – God the Holy Spirit – carrying one dish. (One dish?) A new believer giggled nervously and a more mature Christian cleared his throat rather sternly. Then the Holy Spirit removed the lid from the dish and took out –--- a Bible – which He opened. Suddenly the table was covered – loaded with an amazing array of delicious entrees – each one with a tantalizing aroma. What a banquet – what glorious fellowship – in the very presence of the Holy Trinity. As much as I can remember, I’ll tell you what was on that richly nourishing menu. It was beyond comparison.
This is just a sampling:
2 Peter 1:4 Great and precious promises
John 17:21 Fellowship and intimacy with God
Acts 24:16 Clear conscience
2 Corinthians 3:18 Spiritual growth
Isaiah 58:9,65:24, JN.15:7 Answered prayers
Isaiah 46:4 Protection through old age
Psalms 92:14 Productivity continuing through old age
Deutaronomy 33:25 Daily strength
Ephesians 2:10 Prepared good works
Proverbs 3:5-6 Confidence
Psalms 23:6 Goodness and mercy
Matthew 6:33 Material needs
Romans 8:1 Eternal security
Hebrews 5:14 Discernment
Psalms 16:11 Joy never depleted by circumstances
Hebrews 13:5 God’s never-failing Presence
The dessert was (Galatians 5:22) wonderful fruit and the beverage was refreshing, thirst-quenching, (John 4:10) Living Water.
So much to meditate on AND there is a sumptuous banquet daily for those wise enough to come to the Table – UNTIL – we join our Bridegroom in (Revelation 19:7-9) the marriage supper of the Lamb.
We can take God’s promise of success to Joshua 1:8 and make it ours if we will obey the instructions to meditate on the Word of God day and night.
The Bible was written in 1600 years by 40 authors (few of whom knew each other) on 3 continents in 3 languages – Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek. Yet without one error or contradiction. Over 300 prophesies in the O.T. were completely and accurately fulfilled in Jesus. That had to be God! The Bible is no ordinary book - - it is the living Word of the living God. No matter how much you own, nothing is more valuable than your Bible – no abundance of treasures can match it.
None of all the world religions have an answer for the basic questions every human asks. ORIGIN – where did I come from? MEANING – why am I here? MORALITY – is there a moral law to clarify right and wrong? DESTINY – where am I going?
Only the Bible provides complete answers to these needful questions. The following is just a sample of the many Scriptures on this subject.
ORIGIN – God created us (Genesis 1:27) in His image to (Colossians .1:27) reflect His moral character.
MEANING – We were created to have (1 John 1:3,1 Corinthians 1:9) personal relationship and fellowship with God the Father and God the Son.
MORALITY - Fear the Lord (Proverbs 3:7) and turn away from evil (1 Corinthians 10:31) do all to the glory of God. There is a moral law to clarify right and wrong and because there is - - there has to be a moral Law Giver.
DESTINY – Our destiny is determined by our personal individual choice. (whoever John 3:36) – either (1 Thessalonians 4:17) Heaven
(Revelation 20:15, 21:8) the Lake of Fire
Oh, taste and see (Psalms 34:8) that the Lord is good. Why would any Christian choose to – dare to – waste sight and time watching and reading anything and everything while neglecting the God-breathed TRUTH of Sovereign Majesty. Christians will be judged and not just by what we know but by what we could have known but didn’t because of selfish priorities.
Why did God prepare for us all the TRUTH we need for salvation sanctification – sustaining GRACE etc.? For us personally of course BUT ALSO so that we would know (2 Timothy 3:15) the holy Scriptures and be ready to give (1 Peter 3:15) an answer – a warning - a witness to the lost. Almost the last words Jesus said before He ascended to heaven were (Acts 1:8) you shall be MY witnesses (Matthew 28:19) in all the world. Why? Because (1TIM.2:4) God desires that all be saved and come to a knowledge of the Truth.
Coming events cast their shadows before them and it is evident that we are living in the build-up time for preparation of the Great Tribulation. We need to be like the men of Issachar (1 Chronicles 12:32) who had understanding of the times. Jesus upbraided the Pharisees (Matthew 16:2-3) because they could discern the weather but not the signs of the times. Are we doing any better - - alert – aware – reaching the lost because of the lateness of the hour? Or do we prefer to deny our Saviour by our words and lifestyle?
History can sometimes give us a glimpse of the future. Antiochus IV ruler over Syria 175-163 B.C. After he conquered Egypt he controlled Palestine and Israel. He took for himself the title – Epiphanes – morning god. The people called him by a similar-sounding name meaning Mad Man. He forbid circumcision and stopped the Jewish sacrifice in the recently rebuilt temple. He put a statue of Zeus in the Holy of Holies and sacrificed a pig to Zeus on the holy alter – thus desecrating the temple. His outrageous atrocities involved him in the Maccabean war where the Syrian armies were repeatedly defeated by the brilliant Judas Maccabee.
Shortly after the Rapture the antichrist (Revelation 6:1) will appear on the world scene (2 Thessalonians 2:3-4) and soon promoted to global ruler and dictator. He sets himself above all that is called God and declares that he is God.
Satan cannot create – he can only pervert and copy – so we have:
God’s Originals Satan’s Copies
The holy Trinity (Mat.28:19) The unholy trinity (REV.13:2,12)
Bride of Christ (Revelation 22:17) Harlot Church (Revelation 17:1)
Prophet Elijah (Malachi 4:5) False prophet (Revelation 13:12)
Mark of God (Revelation 7:3) Mark of the Beast (Revelation 13:18)
In Daniel’s vision of the future (7:25, 8:25, 9:27, 11:31, 12:11) Great Tribulation, antichrist makes a covenant with Israel and breaks it after 3 1/2 years (9:27) Then causes the sacrifices to cease (11:31) and the abomination of desolation (12:11) is set up in the Holy of Holies. Jesus said (Matthews 4:15-21) when you see the image of the Beast set up in the Holy of Holies – FLEE!
The antichrist (Revelation 13:1) is Gentile and the false prophet (Revelation 13:11) is Jewish. Chapter 13 tells us of their power and deceit and treachery. The suffering of that time will exceed anything that happened before and ever will again.
God halted the destroying angels (7:3-4) in their destruction until the 144,000 Jewish witnesses were sealed with the mark of God on their foreheads.
In Chapter 13 the false prophet is given power to perform many signs and wonders in order to deceive the people into worshiping antichrist. He calls down fire from heaven – masquerading as the promised Elijah who was the only prophet (1 Kings 18:36-38) to call down fire from heaven.
He makes a statue/idol of the beast – makes it talk – and sets it up in the Holy of Holies. Everyone must bow down to worship before the image and take his mark to prove that he is a worshiper. Anyone who refuses to take the mark will not be allowed to do business or to buy or sell anything. Those who remain faithful to Christ will starve or be murdered – probably beheaded.
In my opinion 666 represents the accumulated wisdom and power of the most brilliant humans – awesome – intimidating – terrifying. BUT its sum total is remote light years away from the Completeness and Sovereign Perfection of SEVEN. Rejoice saints of the MOST HIGH GOD.
Knowing all that we know from God’s Word and knowing the future for the eternal souls of the unsaved - - are we not stirred as watchmen/witnesses to warn the lost? BECAUSE God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked (Ezekiel 33:7-11, 2 Peter 3:9) and is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
All around me awaits the task - - I share a part.

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