Is there Food In Heaven?

Food is such an integral part of everyday life and there is nothing better then finding really good food, except when the really good food is also really cheap (Ai Piee You Ai Qiee, Hua Ai Zhao Lui – want it cheap, want it good and hope to get some change). So are we going to miss the pleasure of eating good food in Heaven? Or is Heaven going to be a place that only serves the “die die must try” food from all over the world across the whole length of human existence? (I am fantasizing about a Heavenly Food Fare — All free some more!)

It seems amazing to me at times that combinations of certain plants and animals can so delight the human palate. Take for example the humble soy sauce. Made from fermented soy beans, it goes so well with the various meats that if soy sauce wasn’t invented, there would be no Japanese, Korean and Chinese cuisine. Again, why would a combination of cumin, coriander, tumeric, lemon grass, salt and sugar combine so well with chicken skewered on a bamboo stick and grilled over charcoal (Satay)? Could it be that God in his graciousness, made a world with all these combinations of food for us to discover?

So, since we enjoy food so much on earth, will we continue to enjoy gastronmic pleasures in the afterlife? If Chinese tradition would have us believe, one still gets hungry in hell, such that once a year, the departed spirits are allowed to return to earth to feast for a month.

Certainly God is not against feasting. Or else he would not have instituted the various feasts recorded in both the old and new testaments. The passover feast for example was to be commemorated every year in remembrance of how God delivered the Israelites from the Egyptians. When he commanded the Israelites to bring their offerings to the temple, it was so that all the people could feast and enjoy the food as well.

In the new testament, Jesus himself alluded to the great feast in the Kingdom of God. Luke 14:15. The prophet Isaiah also wrote about “a feast of rich food for all peoples, a banquet of aged wine — the best meats and the finest of wines.” Isaiah 25:6 which would be served when the Kingdom of God is eventually established on earth. The disciple, John, in his vision of Heaven wrote “Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!” Rev 19:9. It seems that the Bible is clear that there is going to be great feasting in Heaven.

But does this mean that there is going to be an unending buffet of Shiok Shiok Char Siew, Sio Bak, Hokkien Mee, Kobe Beef, Lobster Mornay and Pizzas in Heaven? Surely if you ate these for eternity, it can also get quite sian (Boring). (I always imagine heaven being a place where you can eat and not get full or fat or high cholesterol) Or does it have a spiritual significance?

In Psalm 36, King David wrote that we would “feast on the abundance of your (God’s) house; you give them drink from your river of delights”. Again in Rev 22:1-2, we learn that there is a river of the water of life…..flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the great street of the city (heaven). Jesus himself invites us to drink of the living water that He will give. He said that “whoever drinks the water that He gives will never thirst”, for the water He gives will become in the person “a spring of water welling up to eternal life”. John 4:13. It would seem this “water” does not refer to the physical but to something spiritual.

The prophet Isaiah gives us the answer to this conundrum. He writes “For I (God) will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour out my Spirit on your offspring. ” Isaiah 44:3. Here water is referring to the Holy Spirit and the thirsty land and dry ground refers to Israel’s offspring ie Christian Believers. Water is always very closely linked to the Holy Spirit as seen during Jesus’ Baptism when the Holy Spirit decended upon him as a dove and also in the act of Creation itself when the Spirit of God “hovered over the waters” Gen 1:1. Thus the water that Jesus gives that wells up to eternal life is none other then the Holy Spirit Himself.

So if water has spiritual significance, how about food? In the story of the feeding of the five thousand, Jesus multiplied 5 loaves of bread and 2 fish to feed the masses. John 6: 1-15. After this miracle, people began to follow him thinking that he is the Messiah who will provide for their physical needs by re-establishing the nation of Israel. Jesus was very clear in his mission. He said, “you are looking for me, not because you saw miraculous signs but because you ate the loaves and had your fill.” He cautioned them, “Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life,” John 6:26-27. He goes on to say that he is the “bread of life. He who comes to me (Jesus) will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.” John 6:35. So the food that we are to partake is spiritual food rather then physical food.

I think that the great banquet in heaven does not have the food we are familiar with on earth. No, it is much much better. The food we eat satisfies us for maybe 6-10 hours, and when we eat too much of it, it becomes really Jia Lard (Indigestion). The food we are going to enjoy in Heaven is food that when eaten will give us LIFE itself, that is unimaginable joy and satisfaction than is beyond our imagination. It is like a person when he first tastes Grade A Kobe Beef, after that Angus Prime is not going to satisfy anymore. The food and drink we partake is God himself, ingesting his very spirit into our beings. No, let’s not imagine Heaven to be full of the World’s best Char Siew and Sio Bak. That would be too mediocre!

In the gospel of Luke, Jesus tells a story about a man who was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests to come. One gave an excuse and said he had just bought a field and he must tend to it. Another said that he just got married and cannot come. In the end the master was so angry he asked the servant to go down the street and invite all the poor, the cripple, the lame and the blind to come. So the invited guests missed out on the great banquet. Luke 14:15-24 The moral of the story is that people are so busy about their earthly physical needs, that they forget to feed their spiritual needs. They focus so much on what is temporal that they miss out on the eternal.

Perhaps the question to you is not, “is there going to be food in heaven?”, but rather “You have been cordially invited to attend the Great Heavenly Makan Session – Please RSVP”…. HAVE YOU MADE RESERVATIONS?

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