The Message (MSG) 9-10 Love from the center of who you are; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply; practice playing second fiddle.
11-13 Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. Help needy Christians; be inventive in hospitality.
14-16 Bless your enemies; no cursing under your breath. Laugh with your happy friends when they’re happy; share tears when they’re down. Get along with each other; don’t be stuck-up. Make friends with nobodies; don’t be the great somebody.
17-19 Don’t hit back; discover beauty in everyone. If you’ve got it in you, get along with everybody. Don’t insist on getting even; that’s not for you to do. “I’ll do the judging,” says God. “I’ll take care of it.”
20-21 Our Scriptures tell us that if you see your enemy hungry, go buy that person lunch, or if he’s thirsty, get him a drink. Your generosity will surprise him with goodness. Don’t let evil get the best of you; get the best of evil by doing good.
On Sunday, Sept 3, we began a new sermon series called, “Come to the Table.” We’ll be looking at our table and how open it is to “Outcasts and sinners” as we know and affirm that those are the same people who shared the table with Jesus.
What we need to do is transform our thinking from “Our” table to “Jesus'” table. Sure, the table is here at Presbyterian Church of the Eternal Hills, but it is in no way “OUR” table — it is the Jesus’ Table.
What would Jesus’ table look like today? It would still be a table of abundance — there would still be plenty for all (with leftovers, too!) — and it would certainly still be surrounded by “outcasts and sinners.” According to the scripture above, from Romans 12, it sounds like we should even have room at our table for our enemies.
That’s all good and well in theory; but in this day and age when it is so easy to label people with differing political views or different theologies “enemies,” inviting everyone to the “Open Table” is a little more difficult in actual practice.
Over the next several weeks leading up to World Communion Sunday on October 1, we’ll be considering Jesus’ Table at CEH. It’s a great lead in to our New Beginnings discussions, and a super way for us to really think through this most mysterious sacrament of bread and wine.
Click here for the sermon “Come to the Table”!