Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
The Sacrament of Holy Qurbana: Who May Be Invited to the Table?
Rev. Biju P. Simon
San Francisco MTC
13 “You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot. 14 “You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid.
“Habits of the Heart: Individualism and Commitment in American Life,” the title of a book published in 1989, continues to be one of the most discussed interpretations of modern American society. This book uses case study method to clearly show how the crisis is generated by the disintegration of traditional community, relations, marriage and religion. The values enshrined in them are being rejected by the pressure of an industrial society which is primarily governed by a strong sense of individualism and scientific rationality. Now, when we look at our present world we can see that this is not simply the case of America, rather communities that take human relationships and interrelatedness less seriously are affected by this crisis.
When there is lack of loving and compassionate relationship among human beings then there is a question rising, “who may be invited to the table?” One of the most central sacraments to our Christian faith is Lord’s Table. Originally meant to be a reminder of the Passover, and in Christ, a message of the gospel of freedom and invitation to embrace all humanity, yet far too many people feel uninvited to partake in the Lord’s Table.
The current events of the world such as a White police officer shooting an unarmed Black teenager in Ferguson, Missouri, which opened the wounds of racial discrimination in the USA, and Christians and other minorities brutally targeted for killing in Iraq and elsewhere, all remind 21st century Christ’s disciples that we need to take Jesus’ teachings in the Sermon on the Mount seriously, which is a call to take interrelatedness in human relationships seriously.
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus stated, my disciples need to become the “…. salt of the earth… and the light of the world…” (V.13, 14). How seriously are Christians taking this commandment? Yet, Jesus is saying that we need to communicate through our mission and witness in our present world that God accepts us as His children in His mercy, giving us the gift of life. God demands that his children live a caring, sharing and responsible life. A new experience of God as the Father of infinite goodness and limitless love was the basis of Jesus’ life and relationships. This faith liberates us from the fear to love all God’s children regardless of their economic or social status or race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, creed, religion, political belief, marital status, age, and so on. God has accepted us as we are and therefore we need to accept one another, hence all are invited to the Lord’s Table.
Prayer: Gracious loving heavenly Father, use us as an instrument to proclaim your love to this broken world. Amen!
Thought for the day: All are invited to the Lord's Table