Lessons Of A Lifetime

An Underserved Invitation
Or
Another Refusal To Come
Sunday July 24, 2022

Scripture To Consider:
“And Jesus answered and spoke to them again by parables and said, ‘The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who arranged a marriage for his son, and sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding; and they were not willing to come.’

“Again he sent out other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who were invited, “See, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and fatted cattle are killed, and things are ready. Come to the wedding.”’ But they made light of it and went their ways, one to his own farm, another to his business. And the rest seized his servants, treated them spitefully, and killed them.”

“But when the king heard about it, he was furious. And he sent out his armies, destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. Therefore, go into the highways, and as many as you find, invite to the wedding.’”

“So those servants went out into the highways and gathered together all whom they found, both bad and good. And the wedding hall was filled with guests. But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there, who did not have a wedding garment. So he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment.’ And he was speechless.”

“Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ For many are called, but few are chosen.”  Matthew 22.1-14

Something To Consider:
In last week’s lesson the chief priests and Pharisees perceived that Jesus was speaking of them in the parable of the evil vinedressers. This parable, that portrays the future wedding feast mentioned in Scripture, is no different. This parable is a clear picture of another callous refusal by the religious leaders of the nation of Israel to come to Jesus and to take part in the wedding feast prepared for them by God.

We will probably mention more than once, that Jesus ended this undeserved invitation with the words; “For many are called, but few are chosen.” These words can be extremely encouraging, or terribly frightful, depending on whether we come to Jesus or whether we refuse to come!

Jesus revealed in John 15.16; “You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you [we] should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain.” Since God is not willing that any perish, according to 2 Peter 3.9, can we assume that all of every generation are called by God to come to Christ? But mankind’s free will sadly only allows a few to be chosen due to many refusing to come to Christ!

Something Else To Consider:
Because of the nation of Israel’s refusal and rejection and their repeated killing of God’s innocent messenger’s, including His Son, He removed His protective hand from them as a nation. And due to their continued rebelliousness, armies under the Roman general Titus destroyed and burned the temple and city of Jerusalem in 70 A.D.

As history unfolds, we are faced with the fact that every nation that has rejected the gospel message, and in turn, has refused to come to God through His Son Jesus Christ; has suffered for their refusal to come. And yet, they are all undeservingly invited! Therefore, is it too late even for America? Time will certainly tell!

From a Philippian jail cell, the apostle Paul pronounced in Philippians 3.14; “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” Paul considered his call to come to God in and through Jesus as a high calling. What about us? Will we be among the many called, or among the few chosen?

Something More To Consider:
Israel’s refusal to come to the wedding feast and to receive God’s Son created an undeserved invitation for other nations to come. Their refusal affords other nations a seat at the wedding feast, that future event known as the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. Therefore, has our seat been reserved by our responding positively to the many who have been called? Have we been spiritually born-again in order to be among the few chosen?

It is important to understand that one must be rightly clothed in the righteousness of Christ as prescribed in Isaiah 61.10. “I will greatly rejoice in the LORD. My soul shall be joyful in my God; for He has clothed me with the garments of salvation, He has covered me with the robe of righteousness.”

Our entrance into the wedding feast of Jesus Christ cannot be earned, purchased, or bartered for. It is a free gift of God supplied by the righteousness of His Son Jesus, the sinless Lamb of God. And yet, though many are called to come, few respond, therefore, few are chosen!

How shameful it is that only a few according to Jesus are willing to come! Paul echoes his willingness to come and to press toward the high calling of God in 1 Thessalonians 2,12, by stating; “Walk worthy of God, who has called you into His kingdom and glory.” Are we this Sunday morning, July 24th, 2022, walking worthy of God and worthy of escaping the wrath of God that is to come upon all who have rejected His undeserved invitation to come to Christ? And if not, why not?

A Few Final Words:
Jesus, in Matthew 7.13-14, explained; “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many [not some but many] who go in by it. Because narrow [or constricting] is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life [eternal life], and there are few who find it.”

I will ask one more time. Are we among the many who refuse to come to Christ and who have foolishly entered the wide and destructive way the leads to eternal death and torment? Or are we among the spiritually wise few who have answered the high calling of God in Christ Jesus? There is still time to ready ourselves for the coming of the tribulation and the coming of Christ by our coming to Christ!

Of all the occupants of earth, past, present, and future, many will not be found ready to enter God’s kingdom due to a lack of interest. How often, as true born-again believers in Jesus, are we found truly pressing toward the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus? The end of the age is in sight. The time for coming to Christ is short. An undeserved invitation has been sent to many. Will we among the few who come and therefore prove to be among the chosen few?

For according to Jesus, “The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. Therefore, go into the highways, and as many as you find, invite to the wedding.” And knowing that it is not God’s will that any perish, have we come, have we therefore been chosen by our having come to Christ?

Prayer:
Our Father in heaven, grant unto us a true appreciation of our undeserved invitation to the soon coming wedding feast of all feasts. Enable us to endure to the end of this age or unto the end of our lives as the faithful few following after Jesus. In Him Always, Amen!

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