THE PARABLE OF THE MARRIAGE FEAST

 

"And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said, The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son, And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come. Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage. But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise: And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them. But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy. Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage. So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests. And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless. Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. For many are called, but few are chosen." †††††††††††† Matthew 22:1-14

 

††††††††††† The parable of the marriage feast is the third in a trilogy of judgment parables, parables by which our Lord describes the basis of Godís judgment upon those who despise the blessings and privileges of grace. Without question, it was Godís purpose from eternity to save his elect among the Gentiles. Without question, God predestinated the fall of the Jews as the very means by which he would save his elect among the Gentiles (Rom. 11:11,25,26). There are no accidents in Godís universe (Rom. 11:33-36). Yet, the cause of divine judgment upon that nation was not Godís predestination, but their unbelief.

 

††††††††††† The gospel was first revealed to the Jews, the nation of Israel, in the types and shadows of the Mosaic economy. To Israel alone God gave his law, the priesthood, the tabernacle, and his prophets. When Christ came, he preached the gospel to none but the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Yet, that nation, being blinded by their religious leaders, despised the opportunities of grace God gave them, the gospel of his grace, and his dear Son. Though they feverishly adhered to the rites and ceremonies of the law, they had long rejected the message of Godís prophets. When John the Baptist came preparing the way of the Lord, they ignored him. When Godís own Son came, they hung him up on the cursed tree to die. And when God sent the apostles and disciples of Christ to proclaim the message of the risen Lord and ascended King, they rejected their message, imprisoned them, beat them, and murdered them.

 

††††††††††† Therefore, in 70 AD the Lord God sent the Roman army, under the command of Titus, into Jerusalem. By the hand of Titus, God destroyed both Jerusalem and the nation of Israel. At the end of Danielís 70th week, the house of Israel was left desolate. Their light was turned into darkness. Never again would that nation have a word from God or a visitation of his grace. God said to his servants, Israel will not hear. Leave her alone. Go ye therefore into the highways of the world, and as many as you find, whether Jew or Gentile, bid them come. And whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

 

††††††††††† Israel rejected God; therefore God rejected Israel. Israel despised the light God had given her; therefore God withdrew the light. Israel despised and rejected Godís Son; therefore God cast her off forever. Godís judgment upon the nation of Israel stands as a beacon to warn us. God will not trifle with those who trifle with his Son and the gospel of his grace. An awesome weight of responsibility lies upon the shoulders of all who hear the gospel of Christ faithfully preached unto them. It will not be heard without consequence. It will either be to you a savor of life unto life or of death unto death (II Cor. 2:15-17; Rom. 11:21; Pro. 1:23-33). The same sun that melts the candle hardens the clay. And the same messages that melts the believerís heart before God hardens the unbelieverís heart to judgment.

 

Grace Baptist Church of Danville - Grace For Today Radio Message #653

2734 Old Stanford Road - Danville, Kentucky 40422-9438

Donald S. Fortner, Pastor -Telephone 606-236-8235 - Email grace@mis.net