Sermon Sunday: Keep Your Fork!

You remember when you were little and you would go to your grandparents’ house for Thanksgiving, or Christmas, or maybe just a family gathering? And remember when you would finish your dinner; when you had scattered your vegetables enough to make it look like you ate them, and you had talked your way out of a second serving of said vegetables? Remember when your grandma would take your plate and tell you to keep the fork?

If you don’t, then just imagine that scenario and ask yourself why you would need to keep the fork. It wasn’t because everyone brought their own fork to supper. It wasn’t because your fork might get mixed up with your uncles fork and then you’d take the wrong fork home. It surely wasn’t because at the end of every meal you melted down all the forks and made one giant mega fork, although that would be a pretty awesome tradition. No, it was because keeping your fork meant dessert was coming.
We continued in our K.I.S.S. series today. Walt discussed this big supper we all have to look forward to, waiting for us in the kingdom of God. It’s a supper that is foretold of in several places in the Bible. It is a supper put together by God, for his people.
If you recall, Walt summarized (short & simple) the last few weeks this way:

 

  • In Jesus, God announces and demonstrates God’s unconditional, sacrificial Love for us.
  • In Jesus, God forgives sinners of every shape, story, and situation.
  • In Jesus, God welcomes us to a feast, and everyone who wants to come had a guaranteed place at the table.
We have learned about God’s love. We have accepted that love, and seek to show love to God, and to others. We have learned of his forgiveness; that sacrifice he made so that we could all spend eternity with him – remember – that whole death on the cross, and resurrection thing? And we have come to the feast to commune with our God.
But what happens next?

Isaiah 25:6-9 (NLT)
In Jerusalem, the LORD of Heaven’s Armies will spread a wonderful feast for all the people of the world.
It will be a delicious banquet with clear, well-aged wine and choice meat. There he will remove the cloud of gloom, the shadow of death that hangs over the earth. He will swallow up death forever! 
The Sovereign LORD will wipe away all tears. He will remove forever all insults and mockery against his land and people. The LORD has spoken! In that day the people will proclaim, “This is our God! We trusted in him, and he saved us! This is the LORD, in whom we trusted. Let us rejoice in the salvation he brings!”

I call “not it” for doing the blessing. There’s just too much pressure in that situation.

What would that be like? A meal with your whole entire family with no fighting, no tears, no unforgiveness, no, “did you see what she is wearing?” none of that. Everyone is happy. Everyone is joyful. Everyone is present and accounted for. It won’t matter who you sit next to because everyone is going to be awesome. There will be more than enough food for everyone and I can only imagine that it is going to taste AMAZING.

So how do you get an invitation to the meal?

  1. Everything you’ve got: That sounds like a big price to pay, but if I really think about it, what is everything I have? Is it my stuff? No. I can’t take any of that with me when I die. Is it my money? No. I don’t have a whole lot of that anyway. Is it my life? Yes. It’s my life, but who gave me that life? God did. So I am only giving back to God what he gave to me. In that sense, it’s a pretty small price to pay for eternity in heaven.
  2. Trust & Obedience: This one stretches me. I have no problems trusting God, I don’t think. But, that whole obedience thing. That one is hard. That’s that narrow gate, and difficult road I talked about the other day. Give my life over to God and be obedient to his word – I think I can. I think I can. I think I can….
  3. Respond personally to God’s invitation: Whether you know it or not, God wants you at that party. He is calling you to the supper. He wants nothing more than for you to be there because he made it special just for you. You, me, and everybody has to RSVP to the party.
  4. Bring as many folks with you as you can: Once you have accepted the invitation and RSVPed to that greatest party in the history of the universe, you gotta tell people about it. You gotta let people know what they are going to miss. Or, more importantly, how much God wants them to be there. Part of giving our lives to God is sharing his love with other people. It’s the last thing Jesus told us to do before he went up to start preparing for our arrival.
So that’s it. There is a big meal being prepared for you. Do you want to go?
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