Parable of the Marriage Feast – The Great Invitation

(Matthew 22:1-10)

The parable of the marriage feast is interesting for several reasons. It was given to the chief priests and Pharisees and showed how they and those who acted similarly to them were unworthy of the kingdom of heaven. It also shows how the great invitation to all mankind was given so that every person may have the opportunity of coming to God and entering the kingdom of heaven.

First we see the king in the parable of the marriage feast send out servants to call in all of those who were invited. The ones who were invited in this sense were those who were supposed to be the followers of God. This included the chief priests and Pharisees and those who followed their teachings. They were the office bearers and those in control of God’s house and the teachers of the Old Covenant and so should have been in a position to know and understand his ways.

However we see from this parable and other teachings that these people had gone away from a pure devotion to God’s ways and turned aside into other things. They were holding the form of religion but denying the power of it. Thus we see Jesus say of these people who were invited that they made light of the invitation, they refused to come to the marriage feast, they went off on other business and worst of all they beat, killed or treated shamefully the servants sent to call them to the marriage feast. These servants were the prophets, teachers and apostles of Jesus and God who were treated badly by the supposed people of God.

So they were all found to be unworthy. They made excuses why they could or would not attend the marriage feast, or they turned on the king by attacking his servants. Thus the king sent and destroyed those murderers and their city. God broke down the power base of the temple by bringing into effect the New Covenant through Jesus Christ. The New Covenant has now replaced the Old Covenant.

Now we see the great invitation go out to all of mankind. The king in the parable tells his servants not to go to those who were invited and found unworthy, but to go to the world, to the streets and thoroughfares and invite all of mankind. In Jesus Christ under the New Covenant we see the way is open for all mankind to come before God. There are now no intermediaries between man and God. There is no clergy and laity in God’s kingdom, no group who are to have authority over other and stand between man and God. All are equal in God’s sight and come to him through Jesus Christ only. Jesus is the only intermediary between man and God and the only one through whom we may be saved.

The servants of Jesus Christ have delivered the great invitation. The preachers, teachers, apostles and so on of the Lord are the servants going out to the thoroughfares and streets of the world to invite all mankind to the marriage feast. That is, they are all offered the opportunity to come to God through Jesus Christ and enter into his kingdom.

We have still yet to see the full effect of the great invitation. The time is soon, but has not yet fully arrived. Jesus says, “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, as a testimony to all nations; and then the end will come.” (Matthew 24:14) This is to occur just prior to the time of the end. When he says, “this gospel,” he is talking about the true gospel of Jesus Christ. Not the many things that is preached as truths but have no basis in Christianity or backup in the Bible. There are many things taught in the name of Christianity that are false and sometimes even opposed to the New Covenant. When the time comes I believe we will see the truth of the gospel preached. It will come attended with the signs and wonders as testimony to the truth of the words spoken.

There will also be pretended signs and wonders from Satan to lead astray the people. So it is important now to ground yourself in the knowledge of the truth. You must find out for yourself the truth of the New Covenant and to follow the ways of Jesus Christ. Thus when the truth is preached and the great invitation goes out, you will be ready to hear it and accept God’s invitation to the marriage feast.

I do not pretend for one moment to know all of the truth of the New Covenant or the ways of God. But as Paul said, “Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect; but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own.” (Philippians 3:12) Likewise we must all press on to make it our own. We must listen to the words of God and learn from the Bible. Listen to the teachers and preachers and compare what they say with what the Bible says. Find the tests in the Bible by which you can compare these teachings and apply the tests to understand if what is said is truth or error. As an example, the New Covenant calls us to freedom in Christ Jesus. Thus any teaching that brings you into bondage is not of Christ. Always look to the Lord for guidance and leadership and you will find the truth and gain entry into the marriage feast and the kingdom of heaven when the great invitation is sent out.

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