A Walk through the Book of Luke
March 21, 2023
Jesus at a Pharisee’s house II
The Great Banquet
Throughout my lifetime, I have been to many banquets. Some were weddings, and others were retirement dinners. Others were big parties that one of my employers would throw for the employees and their spouses each year. Other banquets I attended were for a church function, which could also be quite elaborate.
After the food, beverages, dancing, and interactions with friends and family, these types of parties/banquets come to an end. People say their goodbyes and head home to their everyday lives and responsibilities.
In today’s Parable, Jesus speaks of another kind of banquet. This is a banquet that God invites everyone to, but unfortunately, not everyone accepts His invitation.
Today’s devotion is a continuation of yesterday’s reading. In yesterday’s parables, Jesus was discussing being a humble servant. Today, His point is slightly different.
“When one of those at the table with him heard this, he said to Jesus, “Blessed is the one who will eat at the feast in the kingdom of God.”
Jesus replied: “A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests. At the time of the banquet, he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’
“But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said, ‘I have just bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please excuse me.’
“Another said, ‘I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’
“Still another said, ‘I just got married, so I can’t come.’
“The servant came back and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and ordered his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind, and the lame.’
“ ’Sir,’ the servant said, ‘what you ordered has been done, but there is still room.’
“Then the master told his servant, ‘Go out to the roads and country lanes and compel them to come in so that my house will be full. I tell you, not one of those who were invited will get a taste of my banquet.’ ”
This Parable was told by Jesus because of what someone at the table said.
“Blessed is the one who will eat at the feast in the kingdom of God.”
The banquet is what might be called “God’s Salvation Banquet.” Jesus is the servant sent out by God the Father to call people to repentance and faith. The guests invited to the banquet but refused the invite for various reasons are the people of Israel, as the teachers of the law and Pharisees. The church leaders rejected Jesus. They did not believe He was who he said He was, The Son of God.
Jesus, the servant, went out into the nation of Israel and was rebuked. Then He went back out, inviting the lame, the sick (including those with the sickness of sin), the crippled, and the blind. This is the same group of people Jesus referenced in yesterday’s devotion.
The servant/Jesus reports that many had come to the banquet from this group. But there is still room at the table (The Kingdom of God), so the servant is sent out a third time. Now to the rural areas where the gentiles live, many of them come to the banquet.
Everyone is invited to God’s banquet table, Jews, Gentiles, young and old, rich and poor, sick and needy. But unfortunately, many people reject Christ’s call to repent and have faith in the His Gospel message.
Those who reject God’s invitation have only what this world offers and nothing more. But, on the other hand, those who grasp onto the invite will enjoy everlasting life.
Nothing has changed. It was the same today as it was 2000 years ago. We are saved (B.G.T.F). By Grace (God’s unconditional, undeserved love) Through Faith (Our belief that God sent His only Son to be a living sacrifice for our sins, so we may live with Him in eternity forever.)
Jesus has invited everyone to the Kingdom Banquet. Our job is to share the Gospel message with others, so they may repent and have faith in Christ. We want everyone to join us at the banquet.