In Isaiah 55, the prophet pleads with Israel to receive what God freely offered in his grace, "Come, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat!" He used language often reserved for a cry of woe in order to emphasize Israel's dire need to take God’s offer: “Ho! Come!” Through the Ministry of the Word, Christ calls his people to come into his restaurant and dine with him. He stands on the sidewalk, as it were, crying out to the passersby who are hungry, “I have something good prepared for you! Come and eat! Come to my table!” Money is not an issue. In this restaurant, people who cannot pay are welcome. In fact, our money is no good with God. You only need to be hungry to have a reservation. “Come buy wine and milk without money and without price.” There is no currency we can offer God to receive the redemptive benefits of his meals. We cannot, through our obedience, buy what he freely gives as a gift. He has already paid the costs in full through the life, death, and resurrection of Christ. We now owe nothing. There is no bill. God simply says, “Come and eat!” The primary purpose of going to church, therefore, is not to serve God, but to be served by Him. The same Lord who once rose from supper, laid aside his outer garments, tied a towel around his waist, and washed the feet of his disciples, continues to condescend to his followers and serve them in Word and sacrament. He summons us to a corporate, festive event in the call to worship. Each week, through the Ministry of the Word, he spreads a table in the wilderness, setting before us excellent food and drink for the soul.
The morning meal at CURC, which always includes the Lord's Supper, will be on 2 Kings 17 and the fall of Israel, as Pastor Brown continues his series on the Drama of Redemption. The evening meal will be on Philippians 4.4-7, as Pastor Brown continues preaching through Paul's "Epistle of Joy."