July 18

Text: Matthew 22:2

"The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king, who gave a wedding feast for his son.” (NASB)

There is no declared wedding ceremony or “approved” wedding procedure in the Bible.  A part of a prominent Jewish wedding event included feasting.  The lessons in this kingdom parable focus on the invitations.  The feasting only heightens the importance of the invitations.

Notice these things: (1) A king’s son was marrying—not a common person.  (2) The king gave the feast and issued the invitations—he would regard what happened as personal.  (3) The feast represented a lot of preparation—this was not a “cookies and punch” occasion.  This was a serious event!

Let’s begin with the feast.  The animals had to be selected, slaughtered, made ready for cooking, and cooked.  All that would accompany the meat would have to be purchased and prepared in a sufficient amount to support the feast.  Remember, there was no electrical power and no appliances—so no refrigerators, no walk-in coolers, and no freezers—no matter who you were.  Can you imagine the coordination involved?  If guests did not come, there was a lot of spoilage that would occur!  This was not a simple “we will not be there” event.

Note it was a king who was inviting!  To say, “No,” to a king was risky!  An invitation to a king’s palace to feast with the king was an honor!  The people who first were invited should have known all these realities.  They should have known better than to reject the king’s invitation!

To refuse an event the king gave for his son likely had special significance.  Not only was it an offense against the king, but it was also an offense against the person who likely would be the future ruler of you and your children.  You would not want to be remembered as the family that refused to attend “my” wedding feast!  Then and now memory tends to be long!

Too many of us tend to forget who God is.  We tend to forget that how we treat the resurrected Jesus has special impact on God.  Jesus is not a divine afterthought produced by favorable circumstances.  He is an intentional fulfillment.

Suggestion for reflection: What distinguishes an intentional fulfillment from a convenient afterthought?  (Read Hebrews 5:8-14.)

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