And He took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of Me.”
Luke 22:19 (ESV)
Series Focus: “Thy Kingdom Come”
Are you hungry? I guess depending on when this message reached your ears, you may or may not be. That is, if I were talking about breakfast, lunch, or dinner. But I’m not. I want to know if you hunger for God’s word. Do you yearn for the scriptures to sink into your mind, body and spirit? Are you aching for understanding of the stories Jesus taught? I hope so, because His invitation for you is waiting and He needs your response.
I remember mailing out my wedding invitations with great anticipation The replies couldn’t come back fast enough! I wanted everyone on the list to come celebrate with us. We had the wedding party chosen, the meal planned, and the ambience designed. This wedding would be a delight to all who attended! But, would everyone say, “yes?” Of course not—there would be some “no’s” sprinkled in those reply cards. But why? Why wouldn’t they come? We were ready and counting on them to be our guests. There are always some who won’t be willing or able to come; we may never know the reasons.
When Jesus told the story of a certain wedding feast, He said it could be compared to the Kingdom of Heaven. The parable is found in Matthew 22:1-14. We will focus on a portion of this story today.
And again Jesus spoke to them in parables, saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a wedding feast for his son,and sent his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding feast, but they would not come. 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.”’But they paid no attention and went off, one to his farm, another to his business,while the rest seized his servants, treated them shamefully, and killed them. The king was angry, and he sent his troops and destroyed those murderers and burned their city. Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding feast is ready, but those invited were not worthy.Go therefore to the main roads and invite to the wedding feast as many as you find.’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.
The king in this story prepared and invited many to a feast in honor of his son. When those invited rejected the invitation, those outside the guest list were invited in to partake of the banquet. Likewise, God sent His Son to earth to invite many into His kingdom. Jesus, the Messiah, was rejected by the religious leaders and other Jewish people. However, Jesus made it clear that He came not only for the Jews but also the Gentiles. Instead of celebrating and receiving Him, many persecuted, beat, and eventually killed Him. (But He triumphed over death!)
Imagine if God were holding a holiday party this week—to celebrate His Son. You receive your invitation. Would you go? Would you have an excuse? Do you believe He has prepared a place for you at His table? We are all invited! Say yes, to His invitation to receive Christ. We need only believe—He will do the rest.
As you gather with family and friends this Christmas season, will there be room at your table for Jesus? Will you offer all attending – the only food that can truly fill them? We are all loved, we are all welcomed and we must all give our response. May our hearts be filled with praise and thanksgiving as we wait in joyful hope for the coming of our Savior, Jesus Christ.
Holding Fast to Hope,
Scripture References: Luke 22:19; Matthew 22:1-14; Ephesians 2; Matthew 12:18-21