In Part 1 of this article, we contemplated whether we could be filling up on God’s blessings for us, but not actually getting to know Him 1. Like being invited over for a small dinner party, and spending the entire evening enjoying the food while looking at our phone, we could be missing the chance to actually get to know the Host who has prepared and provided so much for us.
In one example, Jesus was explaining the difference between the temporary (eating food) and the eternal (living forever), and shared the following:
Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. This is the bread which comes down out of heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread that came down out of heaven; if anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread also which I will give for the life of the world is My flesh.”
John 6:47-51 NASB
Jesus uses some metaphors here, referring to the salvation that our souls need (earned not by ourselves, but through His sacrifice of His body – taking the punishment that we deserved), by talking about food that we each need to keep our physical body going.
Still, it’s clear that if we limit ourselves to just taking what God provides in the form of food, water, and material things, we’re not going to experience the eternal life that He promises. Even our world full of God’s blessings eventually leads to decay and death, because of the curse of sin. Only by following Jesus – accepting His physical sacrifice, given as the payment for our shortcomings – and following in His footsteps out of gratitude, can we live forever.
That is what life on this earth provides us an opportunity to sign up for. That is what the creation is pointing us towards. That is the far superior blessing.
If you spot me at a wedding for one of your family members or friends, where you’re pretty sure I’m not invited, I understand if you need to kick me out. (I’d just ask for a small plate of snacks from the buffet for my drive home.) After all, I wouldn’t have any right to be at the reception, since I never got to know anyone involved ahead of time.
However, when it comes to God’s banquet – the ultimate wedding feast between Jesus and His bride (the church; meaning all of those who have accepted and follow Him) – we should each seek to have an invitation, and be welcomed in with our own seat (complete with a little placecard), and not just think that we can crash the party.
Scripture quotations taken from the NASB. Copyright by The Lockman Foundation.
- In the first part of this article, we also found that perhaps I’ve thought a little too much about how to sneak into a wedding reception, just to feed my face. That may indicate a need for some more constructive hobbies on my part. ↩