Edited by Robert V. Rakestraw (3-28-2016)

“It was the church anniversary …. I had taken part in the solemn services of the Sunday, and had been asked to speak at the tea-meeting on the Monday. I drew aside to collect my thoughts. But my thoughts politely, [yet] firmly, declined to be collected. …. What relation exists between singing and scones? What fellowship [has] religion with revelry? Why follow the sacred worship of the Lord’s Day with a carnival of confectionery?

“I took my Bible from my pocket, and had not to search far before I came upon a clue. On one of the very earliest pages of the sacred records I lit upon a significant statement. It occurs at a crisis in Hebrew history. It was a time of wealthy revelation and divine illumination. Here it is: ‘They saw God, and did eat and drink’ [Exodus 24:11]. There you have revelation and revelry side by side. There you have the secret of all worship and the germ of all tea-meetings. ….

“But the instinct of the tea-meeting tells me yet one other thing. I see now that I have misinterpreted the majesty of God. ‘It is the pathetic fate of Deity, says Pascal, ‘to be everlastingly misunderstood.’ I had always supposed that the glory of God was embarrassing, bewildering, dazzling! I had thought of it as repelling, terrifying, paralyzing! But now I see that it is nothing of the kind. ‘They saw God and did eat and drink.’ Even a cat will not eat in a strange house nor a bird in a strange cage. Eating and drinking are symbols of familiarity. We feel at home. We bring our friends to our tables that they may realize their welcome. My ugly thought of God was a caricature, a parody, an insult. Man was made for God, and only finds his perfect poise in His presence. To see God is to eat and drink—to be perfectly, peacefully, reverently, restfully, delightfully at home. . . .

“A glorious high throne is the place of our sanctuary.’ It is not repelling; it is restful. He who sees God eats and drinks. The sandwiches naturally follow the sermons. ‘If [anyone] hears My voice I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me.’”

From F.W. Boreham, The Luggage of Life (Kregel, 1995, pp. 185-192; orig. published 1912). The above quotation may be found, along with various articles and essays, on Dr. Rakestraw’s website, gracequestministries.org. You may write to him at bob@gracequestministries.org