A Very Warm and Hearty Welcome to Our Advent Hill University Church Family, Friends, and Visitors!
Have you ever pondered that every new day is a bit of heaven in advance? For what God promises to do at the end of time, He offers at the commencing of each new beginning: “Behold, I make all things new” (Revelation 21:5). New! What is past is gone. Still, in 2017, there stretches before us a journey fresh, uncharted, unsullied and unknown. Absolutely new! Indeed, when God steps in, it’s “Act One” all over again.
Do you see in these words the direction and source of strength for “all things new?” To look at Christ means to live, but for strength to serve Him you must “come and dine” (John 21:12). When our Lord had raised the daughter of Jairus, He commanded to give her food so that she might be strengthened; and so, He says to all of us, “come and dine.”
Friend, could it be that too many live according to the prescription: Take only a little bit of heavenly manna when you have time in the morning or evening; neglect personal or family prayer; never attend prayer meeting; in no way speak about religious matters during the week; skip Sabbath School classes; be late to the worship service, and fall asleep when you get there. And as soon as you leave the place of worship, talk about the weather and all the other stuff. Confine yourself to these rules for a few weeks, and very soon you will be weakened enough to allow Satan to use you as he pleases.
Doctors tell us that many diseases result from a weakened immune system, reduced level of the vital forces. Could it be that Christians in 2017 A.D. are suffering from the same sort of problem? You hardly ever hear of anyone who is too enthusiastic, too zealous in venturing himself for Christ. There was a time when the Church had to pull back her young converts because they were on such a fire for Christ that sometimes they even invited persecution. Today one needs to stir up and urge God’s people to do at least something for the cause of Christ.
So the question is, “Tell me, where do you dine? Where do you rest at midday? Where do your thoughts go? Where and what do you feed your flock with? In your house? In private prayer? In the Word? Or . . .? Tell me where do you graze? Whom do your soul hungers and thirsts to be with?” Do you hear Jesus’ voice, “Come and dine?”
Oh, friend, “come and dine!” Say “Yes” to Him! To be with Jesus is heaven anywhere on earth or in the skies; all else is wilderness and desert. Does your soul long for Christ today? My friend, there is something wrong with us if we can live without Jesus. If you love Him, you will want Him. Does your heart ever say: “Give me Christ, or else I die?” Is it the cry of your soul? Mary Magdalene wept when she thought they had taken away her Lord. As the body suffers without food, so should we without Christ. As fish die without water, so should we apart from Jesus.
None of us need to starve. “Come and dine.” All your strength depends upon union with Christ. Without Him you’ll wither as a branch severed from the vine. Feeding on Him, you will grow in His amazing grace. Where showers fall most, there the trees are the greenest. “Behold, I make all things new.” Which is why the gospel promise is so compelling: “So whoever is in Christ is a new creation: the old things have passed away; behold, new things have come” (2 Corinthians 5:17). “. . . Eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved” (Song of Solomon 5:1).