Wedding Banquet

 

Matthew 22:1-14
Again Jesus spoke to them in parables. He said, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a wedding banquet for his son. He sent his servants to call those who had been invited to the wedding, but they refused to come.

So he sent other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who have been invited, “Look, I’ve prepared my dinner. My oxen and fattened calves have been slaughtered. Everything is ready. Come to the wedding!”‘

But they paid no attention to this and went away, one to his farm, another to his business. The rest grabbed the king’s servants, treated them brutally, and then killed them. Then the king became outraged. He sent his troops, and they destroyed those murderers and burned their city.

“Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. So go into the roads leading out of town and invite as many people as you can find to the wedding.’

Those servants went out into the streets and brought in all the people they found, evil and good alike, and the wedding hall was packed with guests.

“When the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes. He said to him, ‘Friend, how did you get in here without wedding clothes?’ But the man was speechless.

Then the king told his servants, ‘Tie his hands and feet, and throw him into the outer darkness! In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ For many are invited, but few are chosen.”

Earthy Word = Spiritual Word
king = God
son = Jesus
servants = angels
wedding clothes = salvation
outer darkness = hell
Possible Points of Jesus
  1. THE PARABLE ANALYZED
    1. AN INVITATION SPURNED (1-10)
      1. The kingdom of heaven is likened to a wedding feast – Mt 22:1-2
        1. Isaiah had used the figure of a feast to prophecy of the Messianic age – Is 25:6
        2. The Book of Revelation describes a future marriage of the Lamb and His Bride – Re 19:7
      2. And yet the invitation is spurned…
        1. By those indifferent – Mt 22:3-5
        2. By those rebellious – Mt 22:6
          — Jesus may have reference here to the Jewish nation, as He did in the parable of “The Wicked Vinedressers” – Mt 21:33-46
      3. The King’s furious reaction – Mt 22:7
        1. Those who had so callously rejected His invitation, abused His servants, are themselves destroyed
        2. Many understand this to be a prophecy of the destruction of Jerusalem, which occurred in 70 A. D. – Lk 19:41-44
      4. The invitation is extended to others – Mt 22:8-10
        1. As in the parable of “The Wicked Vinedressers”, the opportunity to enjoy the blessings of the kingdom of God is extended to others – Mt 21:43
        2. This has reference to the offer of the gospel and the kingdom to the Gentiles – cf. also Mt 8:5-12
    2. A GUEST IMPROPERLY ATTIRED (11-14)
      1. Without a wedding garment – Mt 22:11-12
        1. It was customary for the hosts to provide their guests suitable apparel
        2. To not wear the provided garment showed a lack of respect and appreciation
        3. No real excuse could be offered for not wearing one (“he was speechless”)
      2. The King’s furious reaction – Mt 22:13
        1. The seriousness of the insult is seen in the reaction of the king
        2. The punishment described is similar to that found in other parables – Mt 13:42,50
      3. Jesus’ conclusion – Mt 22:14
        1. This summarizes the main point of the entire parable
        2. The invitation (call) of God is extended to many, but few receive it in such a way to be among the “chosen”
  2. THE PARABLE APPLIED
    1. HAVE YOU SPURNED THE FATHER’S INVITATION?
      1. Through indifference?
        1. Many people do not know God because of a lack of interest
        2. Yet God has so ordered the affairs of life to encourage faith and interest in Him – Ac 17:26-27; Ro 1:20; 1Ti 2:3-4
        3. For this reason, even those who through indifference do not know God and obey the gospel will be condemned – 2Th 1:7-10
      2. Through rebelliousness?
        1. There are many who know full well the Father’s invitation
        2. But for whatever reason they rebel against it
        3. In so doing, they despise riches of God’s grace and store up for themselves God’s righteous indignation – Ro 2:4-11
    2. ARE YOU ATTIRED FOR THE WEDDING?
      1. Many seek to attend the “wedding” in apparel of their own choosing
        1. Some, not knowing the righteousness of God, have sought to establish their own – Ro 10:1-3
        2. People do this today, when they expect salvation on terms different than those taught in the gospel
          1. E.g., trying to obtain salvation based upon their own good works
          2. E.g., trying to obtain salvation on faith without repentance and obedience
      2. We must be willing to put on the “apparel” that God gives us:
        1. We must “put on” Jesus Christ!
          1. First and foremost this involves clothing ourselves with Christ
          2. Which Paul explains takes place in baptism – Ga 3:26-27
            — Have you put Christ on in baptism?
        2. We must “put on” the new man!
          1. Paul applies the figure of putting on a garment to the development of Christian conduct and character – Col 3:5-14
          2. Do we wish to be found at the wedding feast adorned with the apparel of the “old man with his deeds”?
            — Are you putting off the “old man”, and putting on the “new man”?
        3. We must “put on” righteous deeds!
          1. John described the preparation for glorious wedding of the Lamb and His bride – Re 19:6-9
          2. We understand that the “righteous acts of the saints” are not done to merit salvation – Tit 3:4-5
          3. They are done to bring honor to God, and therefore we are to be ever ready and zealous to do good works – cf. Mt 5:16; Tit 3:1,8,14
            — Are you doing what you can to “beautify” the wedding garment of the bride?
  3. CONCLUSION
    1. We have truly been blessed to be given the opportunity to receive the Father’s invitation to the wedding feast of His Son!
    2. But we learn from Jesus and His parables that the “kingdom of heaven” is for those who thankfully and properly receive the grace that God has to offer
    3. The example of the nation of Israel should serve as a warning to all, both Jew and Gentile, that while God’s call of the gospel is open to all, the saying of Jesus still remains true…

Recommended reading for further study: