‘Be not forgetful to entertain strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” Hebrews 13:2
Beside the notoriety of being able to say, “Guess, who I had lunch with?” Is there any blessing to entertaining angels?
In today’s Old Testament reading, three unknown men stand near Abraham. Genesis isn’t clear on who these three guys are but they don’t gush at Abraham’s offer to stay, saying, “Very well, do as you have said.” Abraham goes out of his way to give them a 5-Star welcome. He offers them water, shade, freshly baked rolls, steak, and even a glass of milk. If Abraham was a waiter, he had that sense of urgency every boss seeks. Genesis 18 captures Abraham’s enthusiasm:
Abraham hastened into the tent and told Sarah, “Quick, three measures of fine flour! Knead it and make rolls.” He ran to the herd, picked out a tender, choice steer, and gave it to a servant, who quickly prepared it. ” (cf. Genesis 18)
What was the result of Abraham’s hospitality? The angels promise Abraham and Sarah the long awaited baby!
In today’s Gospel (cf. Luke 10), Jesus visits Mary and Martha’s house. We all know the punch line where Jesus says, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things. There is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part and it will not be taken from her.”
Without Martha’s 5-star hospitality, would Jesus offered her a prophetic word?
The next time we have unexpected visitors, let’s roll out the red carpet… you never know.