At Supper Time

The original Lord’s Supper was, as every one knows, a supper – a meal at the close, and not in the middle, of the day. We have retained the memory of the time of this original feast in the word “supper.” We do not observe the feast in the evening, because we do not regard the time of the day as containing any part of its symbolic significance, any more than the reclining table on which it was eaten, or the peculiar pattern of bowls or dishes or cups in which it was served. But though the supper hour may not be symbolic, it is at least suggestive. In our towns and cities the family is usually scattered in the middle of the day, and each dines at the place most convenient. Some lunch at their desk, others go to restaurants, others to clubrooms, but in the evening the family gathers at home, and of all the meals of the day, supper is apt o be the best attended. To it the children come from school, the father from the shop, the older girls and boys from their various places of employment, and the family is gathered as a family around the common board. In the words “Lord’s Supper” we have a beautiful and prophetic picture presented to our imagination. Christians today are scattered. Each denomination pursues what it conceives to be its own employment. Each works in its own apartments, at its own desk, and each dines to itself. But “at evening-time there shall be light.” The supper hour of the Lord shall come, and the influence of the Master as the head of the house, as the father of the family, shall gather all at one common board. As surely as there is one Lord and one faith, etc., so surely is there one table and one family of God to be gathered at that table. It is a matter for sorrow and regret that we can not all gather now at a mid-day meal as one people, but in the evening of the world we shall be willing, and the Lord shall gather us then in preparation for his appearing. The people shall offer themselves willingly in the day of God’s power, and he wills that they shall be one flock under one shepherd. –Philip Y. Pendleton, in the book, On the Lord’s Day, Standard Publishing Company, Cincinnati, Ohio, 1904.

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