Thursday, August 16, 2012
The Kingdom of Heaven: The Wedding Reception - August 16, 2012
Matthew 22:1-14 (New Living Translation)
1Jesus also told them other parables. He said, 2 “The Kingdom of Heaven can be illustrated by the story of a king who prepared a great wedding feast for his son. 3 When the banquet was ready, he sent his servants to notify those who were invited. But they all refused to come!
4 “So he sent other servants to tell them, ‘The feast has been prepared. The bulls and fattened cattle have been killed, and everything is ready. Come to the banquet!’ 5 But the guests he had invited ignored them and went their own way, one to his farm, another to his business. 6 Others seized his messengers and insulted them and killed them.
7 “The king was furious, and he sent out his army to destroy the murderers and burn their town. 8 And he said to his servants, ‘The wedding feast is ready, and the guests I invited aren’t worthy of the honor. 9 Now go out to the street corners and invite everyone you see.’ 10 So the servants brought in everyone they could find, good and bad alike, and the banquet hall was filled with guests.
11 “But when the king came in to meet the guests, he noticed a man who wasn’t wearing the proper clothes for a wedding. 12 ‘Friend,’ he asked, ‘how is it that you are here without wedding clothes?’ But the man had no reply. 13 Then the king said to his aides, ‘Bind his hands and feet and throw him into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
14 “For many are called, but few are chosen.”
Long ago God stepped out of heaven and attempted to re-connect with man. He did this through His chosen people, the Jews. His people were often called "the apple of His eye". These were the people that God cherished and tried to prepare to receive His Son. He gave them kings, and they fell into the worship of idols and became like the people of the world around them. He sent them prophets to warn them, and they killed the prophets. He tried in every way to bring them back to Himself, but they rejected Him at every turn. Finally He brought them Jesus.
The parable above illustrates God's experience with the Jewish people, and because of their rejection of His Son, God has made a way for us to come to Him. It is only by the acceptance of His Son Jesus, and his work of our behalf on the cross. It does not matter what we have done, how good or bad we have been, as long as we accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, we are part of God's wedding reception for His Son's bride the church. But, we need to be sure that we are clothed in the right wedding clothes, the righteousness of Jesus Christ.