Saturday, March 26, 2011
The Invitation - Privilege, but also Responsibility
We get invited to things all the time.
A lot of the invitations - we don't care about and totally disregard. No RSVP, no phone call. We just don't answer and don't go. A seminar, for example, where you know they are going to put pressure on you to buy something you don't want or need.
There are others that you agonize over. Don't really want to go, but really SHOULD. What to do? Depending on how important it is, you find an excuse not to go, but you definately communicate that "reason" that you can't attend.
A third level of invitation you want to go to very badly, and you move heaven and earth to be there. A birthday party, a wedding, a family event.
There is a fourth level of invitation. It is so important that to go is an unbelievable privilege. To not go is inconceivable. An invitation to see the President, or Queen or Prime Minister of your country...
The Parable of the Wedding Banquet
1 "Jesus spoke to them again in parables, saying: 2 “The kingdom of heaven is like a king who prepared a wedding banquet for his son. 3 He sent his servants to those who had been invited to the banquet to tell them to come, but they refused to come.
4 “Then he sent some more servants and said, ‘Tell those who have been invited that I have prepared my dinner: My oxen and fattened cattle have been butchered, and everything is ready. Come to the wedding banquet.’
5 “But they paid no attention and went off—one to his field, another to his business. 6 The rest seized his servants, mistreated them and killed them. 7 The king was enraged. He sent his army and destroyed those murderers and burned their city.
8 “Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding banquet is ready, but those I invited did not deserve to come. 9 So go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.’ 10 So the servants went out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find, the bad as well as the good, and the wedding hall was filled with guests.
11 “But when the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes. 12 He asked, ‘How did you get in here without wedding clothes, friend?’ The man was speechless.
13 “Then the king told the attendants, ‘Tie him hand and foot, and throw him outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
14 “For many are invited, but few are chosen.”
This was an invitation that you disregard at your peril.
You also don't show up uninvited!
Jesus is saying the invitation into his kingdom is a big deal. Accept it. Don't reject it!