A king sends out servants to invite suitably prominent people to attend the wedding of his son.
Every person on the guest list declines the invitation. All said they were too busy with their own personal lives.
One had just bought some land. Another had just bought some oxen and a third had just got married.
The King then sends out his servants to invite everyone and anyone, both good and bad, to come to the wedding.
This is clearly an illustration of evangelism, in which God sends out His messengers to invite people to believe in Jesus The first round of invitations went to people on a select guest list. Jesus told this story to his fellow Jews and Matthew’s Gospel was written mainly for Jews.
The Jews were the chosen people, the first people to be invited to the Kingdom but the majority of them refused, particularly the prominent Jews and religious leaders.
This should not make us anti-Jewish, because Jesus Himself was a Jew and so were most of the first generation of Christian leaders.
THE NEXT INVITATIONS WENT TO THE PEOPLE IN THE STREET, TO EVERYONE.
Go therefore to the main roads and invite to the wedding feast as many as you find.’
- And those servants went out into the roads and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good.
So the wedding hall was filled with guests. Matthew 22:9-10 (ESV)
The majority of believers in the early church were common people although there were notable exceptions, such as Nicodemus, Joseph of Arimathea and later prominent Gentiles like Lydia, a rich businesswoman in Greece, the first Christian leader in European history.
When Jesus invites us to receive eternal life, He does not prefer rich, intelligent, religious, respectable or morally upright people.
Everyone is welcome because everyone is loved by God.
- Everyone is invited.
- Everyone is called.
John 3:16-17 (NLT)
16 “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.
God loves the world, which means everyone in the world.
17 God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.
God wants to save the world, which can only mean everyone.
But did the Son of God really die for everyone?
- Did he die for Judas Iscariot, King Herod, Osama Bin Laden, Hitler and Stalin?
Jesus taught us to love our enemies and He practised what He preached.
As He died on the cross, He cried out to the Heavenly Father.
Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” … Luke 23:34 (NIV)
The Apostles Peter, John and Paul plainly tell us that Jesus died for all and that God wants to save everyone.
- …He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:9 (NIV)
- He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world. 1 John 2:2 (NIV)
For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,
- who gave himself as a ransom for all men … 1 Timothy 2:5-6 (NIV)
For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour,
- who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:3-4 (NKJV)
In John’s Gospel, Jesus says He intended to die to save everyone.
But I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself.” John 12:32 (NIV)
- The original Greek does not say ALL MEN or ALL PEOPLES (NKJV) but simply ALL.
Don’t say no to God.
- By rejecting Jesus, you reject God and in the end you reject life itself.
This story of Jesus shows that you have a choice and God will respect your choice, everlasting life or endless misery and darkness.