- Tim Chester, A Meal with Jesus, p. 89
Jesus didn’t run projects, establish ministries, create programs, or put on events. He ate meals. If you routinely share meals and you have a passion for Jesus, then you’ll be doing mission. It’s not that meals save people. People are saved through the gospel message. But meals will create natural opportunities to share that message in a context that resonates powerfully with what you’re saying.
Hospitality has always been integral to the story of God’s people. Abraham set the agenda when he offered three strangers water for their feet and food for their bodies. In so doing he entertained God himself and received afresh the promise (Genesis 18:1–18). God was Israel’s host in the Promised Land (Ps. 39:12; Lev. 25:23), and that would later shape Israel’s behavior. A welcome to strangers and provision for the needy were written into the law of Moses. Rahab is saved because of her faith expressed through hospitality ( Joshua 2; James 2:22–25).
Hospitality continues to be integral to Christian conduct in the new covenant: “Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality” (Rom. 12:13);“Show hospitality to one another without grumbling” (1 Pet. 4:9; see 1 Tim. 5:10); “Whoever receives you receives me, and whoever receives me receives him who sent me” (Matt. 10:40; see 25:35–40); “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares” (Heb. 13:2).