Reflection on Matthew 22:1-14 (19th Sunday after Pentecost)

Let us Pray: Let us pray to the Lord to open the eyes of the blind by the light of His Word and to open the ears of the deaf with the voice of His Gospel, and for the Lord to clear the way for all people to know the riches of His grace, the gift of forgiveness and the promise of life in Christ. This we pray in the Name of our Lord.  Amen

Matthew 22:1-14

Once more Jesus spoke to the people in parables, saying: “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a wedding banquet for his son. He sent his slaves to call those who had been invited to the wedding banquet, but they would not come. Again he sent other slaves, saying, ‘Tell those who have been invited: Look, I have prepared my dinner, my oxen and my fat calves have been slaughtered, and everything is ready; come to the wedding banquet.’ But they made light of it and went away, one to his farm, another to his business, while the rest seized his slaves, mistreated them, and killed them. The king was enraged. He sent his troops, destroyed those murderers, and burned their city. Then he said to his slaves, ‘The wedding is ready, but those invited were not worthy. Go therefore into the main streets, and invite everyone you find to the wedding banquet.’ Those slaves went out into the streets and gathered all whom they found, both good and bad; so the wedding hall was filled with guests.

“But when the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing a wedding robe, and he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding robe?’ And he was speechless. Then the king said to the attendants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, and throw him into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ For many are called, but few are chosen.”

A note about wedding robes, wedding robes were given to the guest when they enter the reception area. They were given the robes to be able to spot someone who may have not been invited. This gave the host the opportunity to ask them to leave or kick them out.

In this parable we see the Jews, the Pharisees and scribes reject the invitation to the Kingdom. . This apparently angered God so he used His wrath against them. And in retaliation he invited everyone to the feast.  All those invited were given wedding robes, so who was the person not wearing the wedding robe. this person possibly represented Jesus, because he was an outcast and very likely would have been out and about with those who got invited. But one question remains is why didn’t he put on a robe like the other guest did? Was it an act of defiance against the king who represented the Pharisees or was it an act to show his humiliation? Either way he was thrown out of the banquet and this represents his conflicts with the Pharisees and scribes. Conflicts also the church elders had with the prophets, the prophets that proclaimed the coming of Jesus. Then when Jesus came, many of the Jews didn’t want anything to do with Him.   But once Jesus came, that invitation to heaven was opened up to anyone who wanted to come, even to those who were the ones who condemned Him. And that invitation is still open today.  Everyone is invited! So if we look at the wedding feast as the Kingdom of God that we all have been invited to, how will you respond to God’s Invitation to His Kingdom? He is inviting you to be a part of his kingdom. Isn’t that the main idea of this parable, And now we now are the inviters to God’s kingdom? We are the ones to go out and invite into his kingdom. We now aren’t just the ones who are just the guest we are the inviters. We need to be about inviting people to God’s kingdom to receive his Son Jesus Christ by faith. To repent of their sins and trust in God’s son. That’s what we need to be about. How have you responded to that invitation? In today’s world how have we rejected that invitation, we continue with racism, destroying our planet home, we have definitely given God reason to feel frustrated with us. But even in his frustration he still loves us each and every day.  And Paul says in the book of Romans “Nothing will separate us from the love of God”

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