The Banquet

Acts of Mercy: This week we focus our meditations on Acts of Mercy which may involve almsgiving but also include feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, visiting those in prison, and caring for the widows and orphans all of which reveal faith and show, through our actions, Christ’s love to those in need.

Rev. Bruce Modahl

Whoever despises his neighbor is a sinner but blessed is he who is generous to the poor. (Proverbs 14:21)

By Jesus’ death and resurrection God is ushering in God’s kingdom. One of the ways Scripture shows us what God’s kingdom is like is by describing a lavish banquet. The high and mighty, the lowly and poor have places at the table. God blesses them with an abundance.

The banquet table is the altar around which those baptized into Jesus’ death and resurrection are gathered by the Holy Spirit. Out of the abundance God supplies, we bring our gifts to God. We bring bread and wine, praise and thanksgiving, and money. God gladly receives our gifts. God blesses the bread and wine and returns them to us as the very means by which he has redeemed us, the body and blood of his Son. Our praise and thanksgiving God gives back to us to make our lives Eucharistic, lives of thanksgiving. God blesses our monetary gifts, multiplies them, and returns them to our hands so that we might use them to bless those in need of bread and the Bread of Life. 

In the Small Catechism, Luther says God’s kingdom comes and God’s will is done without our prayer, but we ask that these “may also come about in and among us.”

Prayer: Even so, we pray, “Come, Lord Jesus.” You have blessed us this day with your gifts. Turn us to be a blessing to others. Amen.

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