THE HEART OF ANY SOCIAL or family gathering is the meal. It reflects relationships and accountability to each other.
In the New Testament, we read about the meal narratives where we see Jesus dining with his followers. What stunned the people at that time was that Jesus dined with the tax collectors, lepers, outcasts and the sinners. These meal narratives tell us that the Christ extends unconditional invitation to people.
This is captured in the hymn “Come, Poor Sinner to the Blessed Feast” by Fanny J. Crosby.
Come, poor sinner, to the blessed, blessed feast,
O hear the call thy Saviour’s call;
Haste to meet Him, He will welcome you His guest,
O rejoice, there is room for all.
Whosoever will in that feast may share,
In our Father’s house there is bread to spare;
Come to Jesus, He is waiting, waiting now,
Come, O come, there is room for all.
Are you weary? Would you lay your weight aside?
Then rest now here, the cross is near;
See where Jesus your Redeemer bled and died,
Come and taste His mercy here. Refrain
Come to Jesus, and your burden He will bear,
The feast is spread, lift up your head;
Come, and rest now in the Saviour’s gentle care,
By His love you shall be fed. Refrain
God oﬀers us abundant grace. God invites us. We are sinners and we do not deserve to dine with him. We are undeserving! But whoever we are and whatever we may be, we are welcome to the table of the Holy Communion. It is around this table that we are able to identify ourselves with the body of Christ. It is around this table that we are reconciled with God by His grace through Jesus Christ.
How do we respond to God’s grace to us in Jesus Christ? When we come to the table, we remember the past (Christ died for us), we know that Christ is present (Christ is risen) and we anticipate His coming (Christ will come again). We recognise a “serious act” in participating in this meal. We bring to God our sinful nature and accept His grace and forgiveness. How do we conduct our lives thereafter?
Mr Kelvin Tan, a teacher at LASALLE College of the Arts, describes the melody of this hymn (its tune composed by Mary K. Jackson) as a combination of the blues (due to the apparent 12-beat cycle) and jazz (because of the chord progression). Each line of the stanza is repeated with the tune slightly varied when sung again. The melody does not seem to end – as God’s grace is overflowing and never-ending. It is simple and accessible for corporate singing. The melody significantly complements and supports the interpretation of the text.
This hymn is in the book Blessed Assurance: Hymns of Fanny J. Crosby published by the Global Music and Media Production Co Pte Ltd. A CD is also available. Please call Kampong Kapor Methodist Church for details at 6293-7997.
A SERIOUS ACT
“When we come to the table, we remember the past (Christ died for us), we know that Christ is present (Christ is risen) and we anticipate His coming (Christ will come again). We recognise a “serious act” in participating in this meal. We bring to God our sinful nature and accept His grace and forgiveness.”
Judith Mosomos is a Lecturer in Church Music at the Methodist School of Music.
Concert tracing life of Christ
KAMPONG KAPOR METHODIST CHURCH (KKMC) will hold a concert tracing the life of Christ through many beautiful sacred compositions from various ages and countries.
The Rev Dr Steven Kimbrough, a baritone from the United States, will present how people of diﬀerent centuries and cultures have responded to their encounter with Christ through song.
The free concert will be held at the KKMC sanctuary on Aug 26 at 8 pm. Registration is not required.
For enquiries, please contact the KKMC office at 6293-7998 or email@example.com
Gambling addiction talk on Aug 27
BEDOK METHODIST CHURCH invites all interested to a “Talk On Gambling Addiction” at its sanctuary on Aug 27 from 2.30 pm to 5 pm.
The speaker will be Mr Joachim Lee, Co-chair of the Youth Sub-Committee of the National Council on Problem Gambling and a Certified Gambling Addiction Counsellor. Learn about what gambling addiction is, what its symptoms are, its impact on the self and on family, and how and where to seek help for yourself or others.
Pre-believing relatives and friends are also welcome. For free registration beginning on Aug 7 and other enquiries, please contact Mr Richard Tan at firstname.lastname@example.org