"The Invitation Has Been Sent" Matthew 22:1-14
“The Invitation Has Been Sent”
This Week’s Core Belief: Eternity I believe there is a heaven and a hell and that Jesus Christ is returning to judge the earth and to establish His eternal kingdom.
John 14:1-4 “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.”
Scripture: Matthew 22:1-14
22 And again Jesus spoke to them in parables, saying, 2 “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a wedding feast for his son, 3 and sent his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding feast, but they would not come. 4 Again he sent other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who are invited, “See, I have prepared my dinner, my oxen and my fat calves have been slaughtered, and everything is ready. Come to the wedding feast.” ’ 5 But they paid no attention and went off, one to his farm, another to his business, 6 while the rest seized his servants, treated them shamefully, and killed them. 7 The king was angry, and he sent his troops and destroyed those murderers and burned their city. 8 Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding feast is ready, but those invited were not worthy. 9 Go therefore to the main roads and invite to the wedding feast as many as you find.’ 10 And those servants went out into the roads and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good. So the wedding hall was filled with guests. 11 “But when the king came in to look at the guests, he saw there a man who had no wedding garment. 12 And he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. 13 Then the king said to the attendants, ‘Bind him hand and foot and cast him into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ 14 For many are called, but few are chosen.”
The Message of this Passage:
From the Ligoniers Ministry: Jesus tells a third parable to the Israelite leaders of Jerusalem in today’s passage, repeating some of the themes of the parable of the tenants (Matt. 21:33–46). Like the parable of the tenants, the parable of the wedding feast describes an authority figure who sends emissaries to certain people (21:33–34, 36; 22:1–3). And in the same way, these representatives are rejected, mistreated, and even killed (21:35–39; 22:5–6). Finally, judgment falls upon both the tenant and the one who rejects the invitation, indeed, upon all those who are unprepared for the kingdom (depicted in their lack of fruit and improper dress, 21:43–44; 22:11–14).
These similarities mean that the parables also have nearly identical interpretations. God, the king in today’s passage, sends His servants, the prophets, to call His people to come to a feast for His Son (vv. 2–3). Actually, the servants go first to those who once told the king they would be at the party. Two invitations customarily went forth for parties in the ancient Near East. The first one did not list the time and place of the event, it only demanded a response of “Yes, I am coming” or “I cannot make it.” A second invitation then finalized the day and hour. At Sinai, the Almighty invited the Israelites to His banquet (the first invite), and they accepted without knowing when it would be (Ex. 24:1–11). Yet when God sent prophets to announce the day of the Lord and the messianic feast (the second invitation), many Israelites turned down the party (Luke 19:41–44).
As with the parable of the tenants, it is those who should be ready for the kingdom that find themselves ill-prepared (Matt. 22:4–8). So the Lord calls on those who have received no invitation — those outside God’s covenant with Israel (vv. 9–10). These foreigners accept the invitation gladly and join those Israelites who are true to Yahweh at the Lamb’s marriage feast (Rev. 19:6–10).
Jesus tells us in Luke 12:48 that “everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required, and from him to whom they entrusted much, they will demand the more.” The more we have been blessed with, the worse off we will be for rejecting our God’s gracious invitation.
For Personal Reflection and Discussion:
How would you react if you were invited to a wedding for the son of the ruler or president of your country?
What is the meaning behind this parable?
What does this passage teach us about God?
What does this passage teach us about mankind?
What truth can be applied to your life about the gospel?
What do you think Jesus is trying to accomplish by telling this story?
What type of person would need to hear this story?
What is the point that Jesus is trying to make about needing the proper wedding garment? How does this impact the way that we live?
What is the meaning of many are called but few are chosen?
Do you feel you should be allowed to come to God on your own terms?