Lord, we thank Thee for the table

2
Eyob S Kebede

Phoenix, Arizona, United States

The depth, the sweetness and sentiment of this hymn is very deep and precious! Enjoyed it so Much!!!

... At the coming in the kingdom,

With all the saints that Overcome,

We a new will feast upon Thee

And Thy Loving Bride become.


Lily Zhou

West Windsor, NJ, United States

Lord, we thank Thee for the table, With the bread and with the wine; At this table we enjoy Thee as the feast of love divine. We partake the bread the emblem of Thy Body giv'n for us; And we share the wine, the symbol of Thy Blood thous shedd'st for us.

Lo, the holy table! With the sacred symbols; Its significance in figure is unsearchable!

By the death of Thy redemption, That Thy life Thou may impart, E'n Thyself to us Thou gavest That we share in all Thou art. By the bread and wine partaking, We Thy death display and prove; Eating, drinking of Thyself, Lord, We remember thee with love.

(Chorus)

By this bread which signifieth Thy one body mystical, We commune with all Thy members In one bond identical. By this holy cup of blessing, cup of wine which now we bless, Of Thy blood we have communion With all those who faith possess.

(Chorus)

Thou Art our eternal portion, Here we take a sweet foretaste, We are waiting for thy Kingdom, And thy coming now we haste, At thy coming in Thy kingdom, with all saints that overcome, We anew will feast upon Thee and Thy loving Bride become.

(Chorus)

We also need to eat the unleavened bread and the bitter herbs (Exo. 12:8; 1 Cor. 5:8). In these three items—the flesh of the lamb, the unleavened bread, and the bitter herbs—there are two kinds of lives: the animal life and the vegetable life. In the Scriptures these two kinds of lives typify two aspects of Christ's life. The animal life has blood that can be shed for redemption. Hence, the animal life typifies the redeeming aspect of the life of Christ, a life that redeems us continually (Rev. 13:8). The vegetable life is the generating life and typifies Christ's life in the aspect of generating. Christ was the grain of wheat that fell into the earth, died, and grew up to produce many grains (John 12:24). However, both the redeeming and the generating aspects of Christ's life are for sustaining, nourishing, supporting, energizing, and strengthening. Whether we eat the flesh of the animal life or the unleavened bread of the vegetable life, we will be strengthened and nourished. Christ as life to us is the sustaining and strengthening power. We need to take Christ as such a life.

We may wonder why it was necessary to eat the unleavened bread with bitter herbs. We often speak of how sweet it is to receive Christ, and a number of hymns use this expression (see Hymns, #221, 554, 1143, and 1157). But it is quite significant that in the type of the passover there are bitter herbs. While we are eating the flesh of the lamb and the unleavened bread, we need to experience bitterness also. The proper way to experience Christ as life is, on the one hand, to be sustained, strengthened, nourished, and supported and, on the other hand, to sense that we are sinful. In fact, the more we enjoy Christ, the more we will sense that we are sinful, worldly, natural, fleshly, soulish, and very much against God. The more we enjoy Christ, the more joy we will have, and also the more bitterness we will have. While we are thanking the Lord for being everything to us, we may also be confessing with tears how sinful, worldly, fleshly, and full of the self and the natural man we are, and how much we are for ourselves and how little we are for God. Before God we may feel that everything concerning us is wrong. In our experience the enjoyment of Christ as life is always accompanied by such a real repentance. This is to enjoy Christ with a contrite heart and a broken spirit (Psa. 51:17). Whenever we eat and enjoy Christ as the Lamb, there must also be the bitter herbs.