Sinner, Sinner, Come To Dinner (Isaiah 55:1-13)

Jesus accepted enough dinner invitations to be criticized as “a glutton and a drunk, a friend of tax collectors and sinners”[1]

  • He attended a wedding in Cana where He functioned as sommelier (suh-muhl-yay).
  • He invited Himself to pop-in for a pop-up dinner with tax collector Zacchaeus.
  • He catered wilderness lunches for thousands on two occasions.
  • He cooked breakfast for His disciples after He rose from the dead.
  • When He arrived in Emmaus, He accepted the dinner invitation of the two disciples He had been walking with.
  • Jesus has made future reservations and sends out invitations for His marriage supper.

Why is Jesus such a foodie?

Robert Kelly reminds us, “In the various cultures underlying the New Testament, dining with someone indicated solidarity with that person. To eat with is to identify with. To take a meal with another was to offer that individual the right hand of fellowship in the deepest sense of the term. Meal fellowship – what an appropriate image for an incarnational Christianity.”

Jesus wrote, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me” (Revelation 3:20). I prefer the KJV, “I will come in to him, and sup with him.”

“Ho, everyone that thirsts,” come sup with Jesus

I’ll organize my comments around two questions: #1 If You Are Saved, Are You Supping With Jesus?, and #2 If You Are Supping With Jesus, Are You Spreading Joy?

#1 – If You Are Saved, Are You Supping With Jesus? (v1-5)

Without question, human beings are God’s master work.

We are His workmanship, made in His image, and will one day be presented holy and without blemish. We will be like Jesus.

Why did God create us? I like what Billy Graham said. “God created us for one reason: to know Him and love Him and have fellowship with Him.”

Adam & Eve had one job – obey God by not eating from one of the trees in the garden. One job.

C.S. Lewis wrote:

“God created things which had free will. That means creatures which can go wrong or right. If a thing is free to be good it’s also free to be bad. And free will is what has made evil possible. Why, then, did God give them free will? Because free will, though it makes evil possible, is also the only thing that makes possible any love or goodness or joy worth having. A world of automata – of creatures that worked like machines – would hardly be worth creating. The happiness which God designs for His higher creatures is the happiness of being freely, voluntarily united to Him and to each other in an ecstasy of love and delight compared with which the most rapturous love between a man and a woman on this earth is mere milk and water. And for that they’ve got to be free.”

Fellowship with God was broken, but not beyond repair. It would be repaired by God coming to Earth as a man. As both God and man He could remain just and be our justifier:

  • The price & penalty for sin is death. By dying in our place, Jesus paid the price and satisfied the penalty. God therefore remains just in saving sinners.
  • God justifies us has always been explained to me in the non-academic phrase, ‘just-as-if-I’d never’ sinned. Believe Jesus and you are described as being “in Him.” God can declare a believing sinner righteous, just as if they had never sinned. 

God became man by descending from a brand new nation. Abraham and Sarah birthed Isaac; Isaac and Rebekah birthed Jacob; Jacob and his wives, Leah and Rachel, had twelve sons who were the twelve tribes. Along the way, God changed Jacob’s name to Israel.

Israel’s history is rife with unfaithfulness. In Isaiah’s time, the northern 10 tribes had succumbed to Assyria. The southern 2 tribes would succumb to Babylon, then Rome, then be dispersed all over the planet for centuries. Nevertheless God promised them they would be saved.

Isa 55:1  “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.

We cannot help but think of the first century Gentile church of the Laodiceans. Jesus wrote to them in the Revelation, saying, “You say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’ – and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked – I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see (3:17-18).

Whether Jew or Gentile there is no currency that you can earn that is acceptable in the exchange of Heaven.

Jesus invites Himself to sup with you. The metaphorical “door” of our heart is constantly being knocked on. Creation… Conscience… Commandments. Those are three ways Jesus knocks throughout your life.

The door knocking – Is it for believers or unbelievers? There were both in Laodicea. It was for both. It is for both today.

Water, wine & milk can be comprehended as aspects of the Holy Spirit’s ministry:

  • “Water” always brings to mind “the rivers of living water” that Jesus promised the Spirit would bring to our lives (John 7).
  • Paul told us not to be drunk with “wine,” but instead be filled with the Holy Spirit.
  • “Milk” we associate with “the milk of the Word.” Jesus said, “the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you” (John 14:26).

Isa 55:2  Why 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.

If you are hungry & thirsty, the foods that religion, philosophy, politics, and psychology offer either do not nourish you, or they make you sick. In the end, they are fatal. They are filled with poisons.

Wanna be like Scientology’s poster boy, Tom Cruise? You’ll be paying $128,000 to reach Clear, another $33,000 to reach Operating Thetan III, and an additional $100,000 to $130,000 to reach Operating Thetan VIII, which is the highest level currently available.

There are worse costs than money. These false worldviews cost lives… marriages… families… careers.

Meanwhile Jesus offers to forgive your sin and remove your guilt. He invites you to cast all your cares upon Him, knowing He cares for you. His requirements and easy & light, illustrated by you & He being yoked together. He gives you the Gift of the permanent indwelling of God the Holy Spirit. He gives you gifts of the Holy Spirit. In Heaven you have a custom mansion waiting for you. In it, as it were, is a safe where no one can touch your spiritual treasures. You also have guaranteed employment as we will be ruling and reigning with Christ in the 1000 year kingdom on earth.

Isa 55:3  Incline 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.

God made four covenants with Israel, given in this order: (1) The Abrahamic Covenant, (2) The Mosaic Covenant, (3) The Davidic Covenant and (4) The New Covenant. He specifically mentions David, so it seems logical that it and the New Covenant are what we ought to ponder.

In chapter seven of Second Samuel God promised a descendant of David will reign on the throne over the people of God. This covenant becomes the basis for hope of a Messiah and the earthly kingdom.

The New Covenant is explained in Ezekiel: “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them” (36:26-27). Jews & Gentiles receive the permanent indwelling of God the Holy Spirit. The New Covenant was and still is intended for the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. On account of the nation of Israel rejecting Jesus and His offer of the Kingdom on Earth, the Church enjoys some of the spiritual promises of the New Covenant right now, e.g., the indwelling Spirit. Israel will in the future.

Isa 55:4  Indeed I have given him as a witness to the people, A leader and commander for the people.

Isa 55:5  Surely 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.”

Either David or his ancestor/offspring, Jesus, will rule the Earth from Jerusalem in the promised but postponed Kingdom of God on Earth.

In Israel right now: Are the nations hurrying to get to Jerusalem so they can “know” the Lord, the Holy One of Israel? Are nations looking at the Jews and saying, “Your God has glorified you?”

Comedian Dana Carvey had a short-lived television show. In one of the recurring skits he and a companion would go to a drive-through and order a ton of stuff. At the window, they’d pay. Then they would speed away laughing, without their change or their food.

Have you ever gotten to the window and the cashier told you that the car ahead of you paid for your meal? A Chic-Fil-A in Minnesota tried to break the record for the longest consecutive single-day pay-it-forward at a drive thru in a single day. They did, with 369 total.

Which car are you in? The one in which you waste all your resources and receive nothing? Or the one in which you get to the window and purchase, without currency, all spiritual blessings?

#2 – If You Are Supping With Jesus, Are You Spreading Joy? (v6-13)

Here is First Peter 1:8 in several translations:

✎︎ NKJV – Whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,

✎︎ ISV – Though you have not seen him, you love him. And even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy,

✎︎ AMP – Without having seen Him, you love Him; though you do not [even] now see Him, you believe in Him and exult and thrill with inexpressible and glorious (triumphant, heavenly) joy.

✎︎MSG You never saw him, yet you love him. You still don’t see him, yet you trust him – with laughter and singing.

It makes sense that if you know Jesus, and sup with Him, your joy will be indescribable and inexpressible. It will be glorious in the sense that it is a manifestation of the transformation supping with Jesus brings. There will be laughing and singing.

The language of the last two verses reminds us we are still looking forward to the Kingdom.

Isa 55:6  Seek the LORD while He may be found, Call upon Him while He is near.

This assumes there comes a time the LORD cannot be found. It is appointed unto men once to die, after which comes judgment upon the unsaved.

We could translate it while He permits Himself to be found, indicating a divinely determined day of grace and salvation.

Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum discovered a unique Jewish understanding of this text. “In rabbinic theology, the time when this repentance is possible is the ten-day period between Rosh Hashanah (the Feast of Trumpets) and Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement).”

This does not mean that individual Jews could only repent & be saved during those ten days. It suggests a time when the Lord would forgive & restore the nation.

Jesus fulfilled or brought about the fulfillment of the spring feasts on the Jewish calendar: Passover, unleavened Bread, First Fruits and Pentecost. He fulfilled them on the very day they were happening. Three fall feasts remain: Trumpets, the Day of Atonement and the Feast of Tabernacles.

We evangelicals make a huge deal out of the fulfillment of the four feasts, but if you suggest His return has anything to do with the fall feasts, you’re labeled as a ‘date setting’ heretic.

Isa 55:7  Let the wicked forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts; Let him return to the LORD, And He will have mercy on him; And to our God, For He will abundantly pardon.

The future kingdom will begin with a population of saved humans who survive the Great Tribulation. Their human offspring will be unsaved. They are the “wicked,” “unrighteous” people who are called upon to repent.

Isa 55:8  “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the LORD.

Isa 55:9  “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts.

Dr. J. Vernon McGee said, “The Gospel is God’s way. It is not man-made. No man could ever have devised it.”

Examine yourself regularly to make sure you’re walk with the Lord is not something man-made.

Isa 55:10  “For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, And do not return there, But water the earth, And make it bring forth and bud, That it may give seed to the sower And bread to the eater,

Isa 55:11  So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.

✎︎ Water from the heavens has a transformative effect upon the Earth and its vegetation.

✎︎ God’s Word has a transformative effect on you.

As long as Israel was faithful to God, they were promised abundant rainfall. A righteous Jew had complete confidence in God to fulfill His promise of precipitation. They should – we should – have complete confidence He will keep His promises about the future kingdom.

Isa 55:12  “For you shall go out with joy, And be led out with peace; The mountains and the hills Shall break forth into singing before you, And all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.

Isa 55:13  Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress tree, And instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree; And it shall be to the LORD for a name, For an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.”

This isn’t fanciful. It is factual. I’m not saying Treebeard will finally be united with his Entwife. But there are phenomena we can cite.

Do you realize that the Earth hums? It’s called (are you ready?) Earth Hum. Is it going too far to suggest it is a form of worship? Or maybe it is what the apostle Paul meant when he pointed out that the creation “groans” (Romans 8:22).

“Thorns” were a thing unknown until Adam & Eve sinned. They are part of the curse sin brought. They will be unknown in the future kingdom & beyond.

“You shall go out with joy, And be led out with peace.” Yes, that was written to Jews about the future kingdom. But we read about our joy unspeakable. It is for now.

Water, wine & milk can be comprehended as aspects of the Holy Spirit’s ministry:

  • “Water” always brings to mind “the rivers of living water” that Jesus promised the Spirit would bring to our lives (John 7).
  • Paul told us not to be drunk with “wine,” but instead be filled with the Holy Spirit.
  • “Milk” we associate with “the milk of the Word.” Jesus said, “the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you” (John 14:26).

Do you express The Joy, Joy, Joy, Joy down in your heart? Do others see that you’re so happy, so very happy? Or is your life more characterized by the song, I hear You knocking but You can’t come in?


1 Luke 7:34