The pandemic has changed many things about our lives, everyday situations we would never have thought about. One of these changes involves our food.
Suddenly those not accustomed to doing their own cooking found themselves with a challenge: How do I get my dinner? Restaurants closed, convenience stores closed, food stations closed—where do I go? The grocery stores still had frozen dinners to pop into the microwave, but that’s a lowly exchange for a good restaurant meal! And when it became apparent that the shutdown would be the pattern for a good while to come? Hmmm.
But soon a new plan emerged: bagged take-out food which one could easily pick up, all prepared, clean, and packaged, and hopefully safe. And usually there was a friendly face at the drive-up location to hand it to you!
Just take home, and enjoy!
This was the purpose of the shewbread in the days of the tabernacle.
There was always bread on the table.
Exodus 25:30 30And you shall set the showbread on the table before Me always.
Always there. God provided.
Isn’t this what we have every day at the Lord’s table? Spiritual take-out food, fresh from the table of the Lord, ready to take home and enjoy.
Yes, take it home. It isn’t for eating just at church, or just at the home of your brother or sister, or just while we are on-line. It is spiritual “take-out” food. Take home.
How do we come by this food? Let us read from the prophet Isaiah. He starts with an invitation.
Isaiah 55:1 1“Ho! Everyone who thirsts, Come to the waters; And you who have no money, Come, buy and eat. Yes, come, buy wine and milk Without money and without price.
God makes his offer appealing. You don’t have to have money, he says, but you do have to have a desire, an appetite for what He is offering. That is why he says, “Ho! Everyone who thirsts.” Stop, consider!
Then the Prophet says “come.” God doesn’t drag us in. We must COME. Willingly. With desire. On our own volition.
Jesus said the same in John 7:37,
John 7:37 37…Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink.
We COME because we are hungry and thirsty. We need spiritual refreshment that only the Word of God can give.
Matt. 5:4 6Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they shall be filled.
Full satisfaction. But WE must do the coming. We must show that we WANT what He has for us. He doesn’t carry us to it, or it to us. He wants us to show that we really WANT it.
Back to Isa. 55:1. There are 3 commands here: come, buy, and eat. All three are necessary.
1- Come to where the food is being prepared.
2- Buy – be prepared to pay the price whatever it is. Then take it home and eat.
3- Eat – assimilate and digest the food to get the nourishment.
It is the best one can find ANYWHERE. Hear the prophet again. The price is right!
Isaiah 55:2 2Why do you spend money for what is not bread, And your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, And let your soul delight itself in abundance.
Good, nourishing, spiritual food, ready to take home and eat. The prophet says even more:
Isaiah 55:3 3Incline your ear, and come to Me. Hear, and your soul shall live; And I will make an everlasting covenant with you— The sure mercies of David. 4Indeed I have given him as a witness to the people, A leader and commander for the people.
Notice the action needed from our side:
“Incline … come … Hear.”
Isaiah 55:3 3… Hear and your soul shall live. And I will make an everlasting covenant with you— The sure mercies of David. 4Indeed I have given him as a witness to the people, A leader and commander for the people.
Doesn’t the word “covenant” stand out? If we give, God says, “I will give… and give… and give” again and again. No limit.
God provides all the good nourishing food we can eat. The prophet says, God hold the best. The best! As he says further,
Isaiah 55:5 5Surely you shall call a nation you do not know, And nations who do not know you shall run to you, Because of the Lord your God, And the Holy One of Israel; For He has glorified you.”
Choice foods on God’s take-out menu, choice foods to take “home” and assimilate. Home is where we need it most, where we are most likely to relax our vigil, say what we “think,” and do what we “feel like” doing—instead of what we “ought” to do.
What do we do with what we take home? Moses gave the answer to this:
Deuteronomy 32:46–47 46and he said to them: “Set your hearts on all the words which I testify among you today, which you shall command your children to be careful to observe—all the words of this law. 47For it is not a futile thing for you, because it is your life…”
It is everyday sustenance. If it is our LIFE, how could it be more important! We must EAT to LIVE!
And it is “take out” food. Take HOME. Take it where we do our everyday tasks, and our everyday complaining, and our everyday connections with one another. Where all the “little things” can go right, or wrong.
The source of the food is the same, but the eating plan is different from how we might do it at the tabernacle, at the table of the Lord. It is take-out food, food to have at home. Where we get our best and most vital lessons.
Add this to whatever spiritual nuggets we glean as we go through the day, and we have a continual supply. Didn’t David say,
Psalm 34:1 1I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.
It is food for the day. Praise for every breath! All day, every day, and in our commonest environment.
If we try to go through the day without nourishment, our energy will lag, our spirit will droop, and precious time will be lost. We don’t want to let this happen!
How do we come by this take-out food? Go where it is available, where it is spread.
And one warning: watch out for look-alikes! Sometimes the unwholesome bread looks oh! so much like the good. Be discerning. Like the Lord told Ezekiel:
It has to have the right source behind it, the right menu, and the right nutrients to give us everything we need. God put it plainly to young Ezekiel:
Ezekiel 2:8 8But you, son of man, hear what I say to you. Do not be rebellious like that rebellious house; open your mouth and eat what I give you.”
Good spiritual bread is not on every table in the world, and it isn’t available in every shop. It is only where the Lord provides it.
Thank God for His provisions! Thank God for His gifts! Before we came along, He was planning for us. It is the living bread that came down from heaven.
Let’s eat it and ENJOY—because it is for our life! Let us eat it, every day, all day. We can never get too much of it. And…
It is for our LIFE! Life in that wonderful world to come!
Spiritual Take-Out Food––No doubt, you have heard the expression: “Food for thought.” [It is a metaphor that is used to express something that is worth thinking about, something that should be pondered in order to obtain the full understanding of, something that is profound and should be examined thoroughly. The idea is of digesting the idea, rather than plowing through it quickly. This metaphor of digesting knowledge is also found in the sentiment of chewing something over, meaning to ponder something in order to obtain the full understanding of the idea or to think something through, thoroughly.]
Remember, literal food runs our bodies; thoughts run our lives. “As man thinketh in his heart, so is he” (Prov. 23:7).
We need to take our time and meditate on our spiritual take-out food, savor it, talk about it, apply it to our lives. Then, the recording angel will write our name in the Book of Remembrance. When Christ returns to gather the saints, all being precious jewels, He will see our names written in that Book of Remembrance, see them and be delighted. What a wonderful day that will be! When He gathers His precious jewels and takes them home at last to Zion, what a homecoming that will be!
Let us be sure to meditate on His Word, put it in practice, run our lives on it that we may be His at His return.
He is looking for you. Let us not disappoint Him.