Do we have the right “robe” of salvation? Are we clothed in the righteousness of Christ? Is He our “Invitation?”
9 Like a thornbush in a drunkard’s hand [truth] is a proverb [Christ’s invitation] in the mouth of a fool [who refuses to accept it].
The Parable of the Wedding Banquet in Matthew 22:1-14 is a strong indictment against the leaders of Israel. There are also several truths–from my perspective–concerning salvation that we can draw from it. Let’s look at it in sections:
Jesus spoke to them again in parables, saying: 2 “The kingdom of heaven is like a king who prepared a wedding banquet for his son. 3 He sent his servants to those who had been invited to the banquet to tell them to come, but they refused to come.
4 “Then he sent some more servants and said, ‘Tell those who have been invited that I have prepared my dinner: My oxen and fattened cattle have been butchered, and everything is ready. Come to the wedding banquet.’
5 “But they paid no attention and went off—one to his field, another to his business. 6 The rest seized his servants, mistreated them and killed them. 7 The king was enraged. He sent his army and destroyed those murderers and burned their city.
8 “Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding banquet is ready, but those I invited did not deserve to come. 9 So go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.’ 10 So the servants went out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find, the bad as well as the good, and the wedding hall was filled with guests.
Here is the framework:
- Jesus is describing the kingdom of heaven (kingdom of God in Luke 14:15-24).
- The King is God and Jesus is the Son. The banquet is found in Revelation 19:7-8 (there was always a banquet with a wedding-see John 2:1-10 for an example).
- People gave excuses for not accepting the invitation. Who are these people? The Jews, including the leaders of Israel. It’s everyone who rejects Jesus as Messiah.
- The others who are then invited are the Gentile nations. Even Paul said, “Your blood be on your own heads. I am clean. From now on I will go to the Gentiles” Acts 18:6.
Jesus was spelling out the conditions of salvation and the consequences of rejection. He was also prophesying the Gospel being shared with the Gentiles beginning with Cornelius in Acts 10.
But wait–there’s more!
11 “But when the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes. 12 He asked, ‘How did you get in here without wedding clothes, friend?’ The man was speechless.
13 “Then the king told the attendants, ‘Tie him hand and foot, and throw him outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
Wedding guests were given an outer robe to wear that identified them with the wedding party. This man did not have a wedding robe. What does this mean?!
- The King is the one who noticed.
- The King called the man, “friend.” It is possible that the King was giving him an opportunity to repent. Jesus used the same reference in His parables; He also called, Judas “friend” at His betrayal (Matthew 26:50), thus (possibly) giving one last chance to repent.
- The man was speechless because he thought that his own clothes were good enough. Are our “works” good enough? Can we be righteous enough to stand in the King’s presence? Not without the robe of righteousness given to us by Christ (2 Corinthians 5:21 and Revelation 3:5).
- The consequences of the man’s poor choice was to be cast out. Only those with the right robe are allowed to be part of the Wedding Banquet of the Lamb.
14 “For many are invited, but few are chosen.”
Jesus made it plain in John 12:32 that He calls all people to Himself by His finished work on the cross. The term, “once for all,” is used in Romans 6:10, Hebrews 5:9, 7:27, 9:12, 10:1-2, 10:10, and Jude 1:3. It’s pretty clear that Jesus died Once or All. The condition of salvation is the acceptance of Jesus as Messiah, which means that we pledge our faith and obedience, our lives and even our deaths to Him. The neat part is that we get to do it IN PERSON. Our introduction to Jesus is personal and He is ever-present in us from that point on. Cool, huh?
Let’s renew that vow to Him today by acknowledging His Presence, Participation, Provision, Protection, and Pilotry (the One who pilots our ship) in our lives.
Abba, you are my Pilot, my Messiah. May I subject myself to You in every way today. Amen.