Passage We are continuing our series on the parables of Jesus this morning with a parable from Luke 14: The Parable of the Great Banquet.

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1 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 1 Passage We are cntinuing ur series n the parables f Jesus this mrning with a parable frm Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet. There is a smewhat similar parable in Matthew 22:2 14 called The Parable f the Wedding Banquet, but that is nt the ne we are cncentrating n this mrning. Befre we get t tday s parable, let me give yu an idea f the situatin Which is given in Luke 14:1: One Sabbath, when Jesus went t eat in the huse f a prminent Pharisee, The dinner prbably lked smething like this picture. The Pharisees were ne f the grups f religius leaders in Jesus time. They were nt quite sure abut this Jesus fellw and what He was teaching. Sme Pharisees acted hypcritically that is as a pretender, their behavir didn t match what they said. In Jesus time, hnr was very imprtant. It was an hnr/shame culture. Where yu sat at the table indicated hw hnred yu were by the hst. At this meal, Jesus bserved (v. 7) hw the guests picked where they sat at the table. They tried t sit at the places f hnr at the table. Jesus spke up and tld them (vv. 7-11) that they shuld humble themselves and let the hst invite them t a place f hnr. Nw we knw the situatin fr tday s parable. Starting with Luke 14:15: [[slide]] 15 When ne f thse at the table with him heard this, he said t Jesus, Blessed is the ne wh will eat at the feast in the kingdm f Gd (heaven). 16 Jesus replied: A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests. 17 At the time f the banquet he sent his servant t tell thse wh had been invited, Cme, fr everything is nw ready.

2 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 2 18 But they all alike began t make excuses. The first said, I have just bught a field, and I must g and see it. Please excuse me. 19 Anther said, I have just bught five yke f xen, and I m n my way t try them ut. Please excuse me. 20 Still anther said, I just gt married, s I can t cme. 21 The servant came back and reprted this t his master. Then the wner f the huse became angry and rdered his servant, G ut quickly int the streets and alleys f the twn and bring in the pr, the crippled, the blind and the lame. 22 Sir, the servant said, what yu rdered has been dne, but there is still rm. 23 Then the master tld his servant, G ut t the rads and cuntry lanes and cmpel them t cme in, s that my huse will be full. 24 I tell yu, nt ne f thse wh were invited will get a taste f my banquet. Parables As I said, ur parable ccurs just after Jesus taught at the dinner abut being humble. In respnse, ne f the guests prclaims: [[slide]] 15 Blessed is the ne wh will eat at the feast in the kingdm f Gd. This prclamatin can be interpreted in a cuple f different ways. The guest culd be agreeing with Jesus but I think that the guest is saying that everyne at this table, as gd Pharisees, wuld f curse get int heaven and be with Gd. This was nt being humble Either the guest didn t get what Jesus was saying r was just trying t smze up t everyne at this dinner party. Jesus respnds t clarify what He meant with the parable that we just heard.

3 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 3 A parable is a type f literature fund in the bible amng ther places. They are quite simple and true t life but nt abut an actual event. They illustrate a pint Jesus used parables a lt as a teaching tl.

4 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 4 Guest cmment [slide]] 16 Jesus replied: A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests. 17 At the time f the banquet he sent his servant t tell thse wh had been invited, Cme, fr everything is nw ready. [[pause]] s peple can see what is n the screen [[/pause]] In v. 16 it says that this was a great banquet. A big deal. The hst wuld have previusly sent ut the invitatins and gtten cnfirmatins frm all wh said that they wuld cme. The hst had t d this because he was prbably ging t slaughter livestck. The hst wanted t be certain that there was enugh fr everyne but nt t much They didn t have accurate clcks like we have tday, s n the day f the banquet, the hst send wrd t the guests when the meal was ready. Three refusals What did his guests say? [slide]] 18 But they all alike began t make excuses. The first said, I have just bught a field, and I must g and see it. Please excuse me. 19 Anther said, I have just bught five yke f xen, and I m n my way t try them ut. Please excuse me. 20 Still anther said, I just gt married, s I can t cme. As yu just saw in the skit, the first says that he has bught a field and must g lk at it. A lame excuse. If yu buy land, yu certainly g lk at it befre yu buy it. Meals like this were evening affairs. It may have been already dark hw can yu lk at land in the dark! Lastly, since he has already said that he wuld cme t the meal it wasn t a surprise this was just being rude.

5 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 5 Technically he gave an excuse, in reality, the first guest didn t have an excuse. Evangelist Billy Sunday defined an excuse as, the skin f a reasn stuffed with a lie. 1 I m reminded f a rejectin that I gt when I was still single. I asked a wman ut n a date and her respnse was I ve gt t paint my tenails that night. The secnd guest has a similar nn-excuse. D yu buy livestck withut lking at them? N. Can yu prperly lk at them in the dark? N. Is the dinner a surprise? N. The first and secnd guests are wealthy and likely imprtant in the cmmunity. It takes mney t buy land. An individual farmer desn t need five yke f xen. Smene with large farm and many emplyees needs five yke f xen. The third guest s excuse has the ech f sme substance. In Deut. 24:5, there is a neyear exemptin frm military duty if yu are recently married. 5 If a man has recently married, he must nt be sent t war r have any ther duty laid n him. Fr ne year he is t be free t stay at hme and bring happiness t the wife he has married. Hwever, it desn t exempt yu frm dinner parties that yu knew abut and had said that yu wuld attend. Getting married in that time was a lng drawn ut affair planned well in advance. It was n surprise. Anther lame excuse. All three have given the hst a skin f acceptance stuffed with a rejectin. 1 Warren W. Wiersbe, Be Skillful ( Be Cmmentary Series; Wheatn, IL: Victr Bks, 1996), 87.

6 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 6 Hst s reactin S, what happens? The hst becmes angry, he has been insulted. The hst tells the servant: [[slide]] 21 The servant came back and reprted this t his master. Then the wner f the huse became angry and rdered his servant, G ut quickly int the streets and alleys f the twn and bring in the pr, the crippled, the blind and the lame. 22 Sir, the servant said, what yu rdered has been dne, but there is still rm. Nw the hst invites peple frm the city. The hst invites peple frm the lwer classes. The hst invites thse wh have n hpe f every repaying the dinner invitatin. In Jesus time, being handicapped was nt just a medical cnditin but was wrapped up in scial sigma as well. They were lked dwn upn. The hst invites peple acrss scial barriers. The hst has an attentive and experienced servant. The servant had anticipated the hst s desire and had already dne what his Master wanted. And there was still rm.

7 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 7 The hst expands the invitatin list. He says: [[slide]] 23 G ut t the rads and cuntry lanes and cmpel them t cme in, s that my huse will be full. 24 I tell yu, nt ne f thse wh were invited will get a taste f my banquet. Nw the hst is inviting peple frm utside f the city, thse n the rads and cuntry lanes. What types f flk are utside f the city walls? Maybe utcasts and nn-jews. The Jews f Jesus time had a clear sense f us Jews versus thse thers-everyne else r Gentiles. A gd Jew wuld nt eat with a Gentile. This was an extreme invitatin. It ges nt nly acrss scial barriers but acrss religius and ethnic barriers as well. Anther part f the invitatin is described in v. 23. It says t cmpel peple t cme. This desn t mean that the servant shuld physically frce peple but rather t cmpel this by frce f argument. [[pause]] Jesus cncludes the parable with the hst prclaiming (v. 24): nt ne f thse wh were invited will get a taste f my banquet By filling every seat, there wuld be n rm fr ne f thse wh refused t cme, even if they change their mind.

8 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 8 The real message [[slide]] The Real Message: - Gd: The Hst f the banquet - Jesus: The servant - Us: Thse invited t the meal - Heaven: The banquet - Gspel: Cmpelling argument Jesus isn t talking abut an rdinary meal here is He? Jesus is talking abut an invitatin t g t heaven. The Pharisees that Jesus was speaking t thught that they were n the inside track and were guaranteed t be with Gd after they died. Jesus is telling us that even if we have an invitatin frm Gd, we must still respnd, say yes, and mean it! In this parable, it is pretty clear that: Gd is the hst Jesus is His servant we are the invited guests, and the banquet is heaven. I think that the Gspel is the cmpelling argument t cme t the banquet

9 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 9 The lessn f the parable is that we are all invited t heaven. We all get t sit at Gd s banquet table in heaven if we accept Gd s invitatin. And Jesus, the servant in the parable, had invited the Jews t His dinner table. Jesus invited nt nly the rich religius elite but als the the pr, the crippled, the blind and the lame. During Jesus life, He preached mstly t the Jews. After His death, Jesus sent His disciples utside f the bundaries f Israel and t the rads and cuntry lanes f the wrld t invite the Gentiles t the banquet. This was demnstrated in Acts 13:46 When Apstle Paul and Barnabas arrived in the Greek city f Antich f Pisidia, they first prclaimed the Gspel at the Jewish synaggue. When sme Jews began t heap abuse n them fr their teaching, Paul and Barnabas respnded: 46 We had t speak the wrd f Gd t yu first. Since yu reject it and d nt cnsider yurselves wrthy f eternal life, we nw turn t the Gentiles. As in the parable, sme f the Jews had refused the invitatin, but Acts recrds that the Gentiles were hnred.

10 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 10 Cmpelling argument We have Jesus cmpelling argument t cme t the dinner table. It is called the Bible and thrugh its wrds, we are invited t faith in Jesus and t a seat at the table. We are tempted t make the same lame excuses as the dinner guests did. Thelgian William Barclay ntes that peple s excuses in the parable d nt differ s very much tday. 1 Fr example I just bught a field. This is like smene wrking s much that they have little rm fr anything else. Are we s bsessed with what we have in the wrld that we have n rm fr Gd? I just bught sme xen. This is like a car cllectr Jay Len fr example wh has just bught 5 antique cars that he wants t try ut and has n time fr anyne else? Are we s immersed with ur activities that we have n time fr Gd? I just gt married. Are we s caught up in ur persnal relatinships that we dn t tend t ur relatinship with Gd? Are we t busy texting ur friends r lking at Facebk that we can t pray? Our excuses are n different.

11 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 11 Anther lessn frm the parable, is that t have a seat at Gd s dinner table, we d nt need t be special n this earth. Gd s invitatin is pen t everyne rich r pr, healthy r ailing, insiders r utsiders. Sme f yu may think that smehw yu aren t wrthy t accept the invitatin. My past is t bad. I m nt gd enugh I haven t yet dne enugh I m nt strng enugh Let me ask yu: Were the peple in the streets and alleys f the twn, the pr, the crippled, the blind and the lame. wrthy enugh? N, but they were invited. Were the utcasts n the rads and cuntry lanes wrthy enugh? N, but they were invited. Were the freigners, the Gentiles n the rads and cuntry lanes wrthy enugh? N, but they were invited. Are we wrthy enugh fr this invitatin? N, but thrugh the grace f Gd, we are invited. Jesus clears away any barriers that we think are between us and Gd. Our respnse t the invitatin is t accept Jesus as ur savir.

12 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 12 Reservatins If yu have already said Yes t Jesus, there is place at the heavenly banquet table reserved fr yu. If yu are uncertain if yu have a reservatin at Gd s table, yu can fix that. T get a reservatin des nt depend upn me, r anyne else, But nly upn yur acceptance f the invitatin that was given by Jesus. It is there, sitting n the pew next t yu, waiting fr yu. Dn t delay, the banquet is ready fr yu nw. We have an invitatin t the table. If yu want t accept it fr the first time, r even if yu have already accepted Jesus int yur heart, please read with me this prayer frm the Billy Graham Institute: [[slide]] Dear Gd, I knw I m a sinner, and I ask fr yur frgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Yur Sn. I believe that He died fr my sin and that yu raised Him t life. I want t trust Him as my Savir and fllw Him as Lrd, frm this day frward. Guide my life and help me t d yur will. I pray this in the name f Jesus. Amen. Billy Graham Institute

13 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 13 That s it! If yu sincerely meant what yu have just said, Jesus will enter yur heart and yu will be a changed persn. Nt nly will yu have verbally said yes but yur actins will change. N lnger will yu say empty wrds that claim yu are a Christian, but yu will act like a fllwer f Jesus. Yur yes t Jesus invitatin will be stuffed with yur cmmitment. By cnfessing ur sin and prclaiming with ur vice that Jesus is ur Lrd, ur sin has been frgiven. Thrugh Jesus, there is n lnger any barrier between us and Gd. We will see each ther at Gd s banquet table in heaven. A heavenly banquet table is nt the nly table that we are invited t. In a few minutes we will be invited t the table f Jesus last supper which was first celebrated in the upper rm. Prayer Dear Jesus, Thank yu fr Yur invitatin Thank yu fr clearing away barriers s that we can respnd yes. We dn t deserve the invitatin, but thrugh grace f the Hly Spirit and thrugh yur sacrifice fr us n the crss, We can say yes, I m cming t Gd s banquet, please shw me my seat. Praise yu Jesus.

14 Tdd Misfeldt Luke 14: The Parable f the Great Banquet 14 Amen.

15 1 William Barclay, The Gspel f Luke (The New Daily Study Bible; Luisville, KY; Lndn: Westminster Jhn Knx Press, 2001), 229.

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