An Invitation From The King - Matthew 22:2-14

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1 An Invitation From The King - Matthew 22:2-14 Of all the events and all the parties to have, without a doubt one of the greatest and most memorable events is a wedding. o Birthdays are great. o Anniversaries are special. o Baby showers are nice. o But this is a special time in the lives of 2 people where they will commit their love to one another and make vows before God that will unite them together as one. Typically during these times of celebration, the wedding couple will take the time to sit down and make a list of their closest family and friends that they want to share this special occasion with. A lot of time and money is poured into a wedding so it is important that invitations be sent out so as to properly prepare for each of the guests. o For elaborate weddings, many times there will be 2 sets of invitations sent out: An RSVP invitation to let the couple know whether you will be attending or not. A formal reminder invitation would be sent out to those that RSVP when the preparation is in its final stages. o In Bible days, just as it is today, it would be considered inappropriate and rude to acknowledge the 1 st invitation and then to reject the 2 nd invitation b/c preparation has already been made on your behalf. Such was the case in the parable that we will read today in Matthew 22:. READ SCRIPTURE One of the great beauties about parables is the detail in which our Lord gives them, and none is perhaps more detailed of God s preparation for us than the Parable of the Marriage Feast. I. The Invitation (vv. 2-7) a. God s Invitation Rejected (v. 2-3) i. It is one thing to reject the invitation of someone who don t know or haven t seen in a long time. ii. It is another thing to reject the invitation of a King. Who would dare reject any invitation that the King might send to them? 1. From the very beginning, all the way back to Abraham, the people of Israel had been invited to this great feast ( they were bidden ). 2. They were the chosen people who were called out by God Himself, yet through their lives and through their choices they rejected Him as many have done today. b. God Sent Messengers As A Reminder (v. 4-7) i. God had sent out messengers to tell of this great feast during the time of Christ by sending: 1. Stephen 2. The Apostles

2 3. The 70 witness sent out to prepare the city ii. Yet Israel still would not come. And though it is disappointing that they would not come, perhaps just as tragic was their reasoning for not attending: 1. The Bible says specifically that they went their own ways. 2. Well Sean, there must have been something important that came up, right? Maybe an emergency? a. Some went out to their farms. b. Others went back to their businesses. c. Many were too consumed with their own lives and what they had to do to be concerned with the King s invitation. d. Still others took the very servants inviting them & killed them. 3. As disappointing and as foolish as this may seem, the sad part is that even after this was done years ago, people today are still making excuses for not accepting God s invitation. a. I m too busy right now, besides I have my whole life in front of me. b. I have to focus on my career right now. c. Perhaps because of the mistakes that other Christians have made, you use that as an excuse not to follow God today. d. Let me tell you something, there is coming a day very soon when all of God s invited guests will gather around our King s Table for a glorious wedding feast. i. The preparation has been made. The invitations have been sent. The table is being prepared and someday soon He will call us Home. ii. You must decide today whether you plan to attend or not, and the only way you can attend is by accepting Christ s invitation. 4. This wedding invitation was personal. It was something that each person must decide for themselves whether to accept or not. 5. God s invitation for you to accept Christ is personal as well. a. It s a choice you must make. i. I would love to make that choice for my kids, but I cant. ii. Christ died for each of us individually. b. You cannot make excuses for rejecting the King s invitations. c. You cannot blame someone else for you not accepting God s invitation. d. It is a choice YOU must make. 6. The Bible goes on to tell us that because they rejected this invitation, they were not worthy to come to the Table. (v.8) a. What a sad statement. Israel had the privilege of attending the Great Marriage Feast of God, but b/c they refused His invitation they were now counted unworthy. b. Fast forward in time to when Jerusalem was destroyed in 70 A.D. The wrath of God will fall upon those who reject the invitation of the King. II. The Extended Invitation (vv. 8-10) a. The Preparation Had Been Made

3 i. Verse 8 reminds us that preparations had been made already and it was important NOT to waste this sacrifice and this preparation on those that rejected the invitation. 1. The King was ready to receive them. 2. The food had been prepared. 3. The sacrifices had been made 4. The table had been set. 5. All that was needed was for the people to accept the invitation and come. ii. God Himself is ready to receive you this morning. 1. All of Heaven is assembled to welcome us. 2. The angels are waiting to rejoice over us coming to know Christ. 3. This church stands ready to encourage you and to help you grow and learn. 4. A home in Heaven has been prepared and is ready and waiting for us. 5. The question is, are you ready to accept the invitation? a. Are you ready to turn from sin? b. Are you ready to give your heart and life to Christ? c. The sacrifice and the preparation has been made, what will you do? b. All Have Now Been Invited (v. 9-10) i. No longer was the invitation just to a few or to a certain group. ii. Now the invitation was extended to include all those who would accept the King s invitation. iii. So the King bid that each of His servants go out and find as many as they possibly could and invite them to accept this great invitation. 1. Jew & Gentile 2. Rich & Poor 3. Free & Slave 4. Good People & Immoral People 5. All were invited. iv. So has Christ encouraged us to go out & invite ALL who will come & receive Christ as their personal Savior. 1. Regardless of age. 2. Regardless of background. 3. Regardless of whether they have done more good things than bad. 4. Regardless of whether they have money or not. 5. All they have to do is just accept the King s invitation & come. III. The Unprepared (vv ) a. The One Who Did Not Wear The Wedding Garment i. You see as the people were invited to come to the King s feast, before they could assemble at the King s table they first had to put on the wedding garment. 1. No man would be welcome or accepted unless the garment was worn. 2. There was no charge for the garment. 3. There was no way to earn the garment. 4. You just had to accept it and put it on to cover yourself & make yourself presentable before the King.

4 ii. Unfortunately, the emphasis of this parable is pointed at those who did not come to the wedding and to that one who was not prepared. iii. Matthew tells us that there was one who came, but He did not wear the wedding garment that was furnished by the King. 1. No one else noticed that the man was not clothed properly, but the King spotted him immediately. a. Once again folks, let me remind you, we can fool others here on this earth, but we will never fool God. b. When you are going to a feast at the King s table, the only person you should be concerned about impressing is the King. 2. Why would he not wear the wedding garment? 3. There was no reason for him not to & the Bible tells us he stood without excuse. iv. Because of this, he was bound and cast into darkness where he would be separated from the wedding party and from the King. v. The important thing to note in this passage is this. You may want to go to Heaven. You may love the Lord. You may come to church. You may sing in the choir and even be a witness for God. But you cant come to the wedding feast without the wedding garment that has been provided for you. 1. You can t wear your good works, that won t do it. 2. You can t wear your perfect attendance, that s not enough. 3. You can t wear your good intentions. a. There s a lot of people who want to serve God, they just want to do it later. b. It s not like I m slamming the door on God, I just want Him to come back later. 4. The only acceptable garment that can be worn to this wedding feast is the garment of righteousness which can only be found when we are clothed in the righteousness of Christ. a. This garment has been offered to all men. b. This garment has been paid for by the blood of Jesus Christ. c. This garment cannot be earned or bargained for. d. And those that stand before God without this garment will stand before Him without excuse and be eternally lost in hell. e. And the sad thing is, there is ABSOLUTELY NO reason for this to ever happen. Everything has been taken care of and provided for us. All we have to do is accept the invitation and put on the wedding garment. b. For Many Are Called, But Few Are Chosen (v.14) i. Why do people go to Hell? Have you ever thought about it? ii. The answer is somewhat obvious, yet still startling... they choose to. 1. You say, Sean, no one in their right mind would want to go to Hell. Why would you say that?

5 2. The Bible has made it quite plain and clear that if you reject the King s invitation, you have in turn chosen eternal darkness. a. Luke 13:24 Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. 3. The thing about salvation and eternity is this... the offer has been made, the price has been paid; but each of us chooses our destination by either accepting or rejecting this wedding invitation. iii. Christ has called all men unto salvation. 1. John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 2. I John 4:9 In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. iv. He gave His life for all. His blood was spilt for all. He rose victorious for all. The invitation has been sent. God has even sent His messengers to invite you to this glorious celebration. The choice is yours.

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