The second parable Jesus gave about wealth is the parable of the great feast found in Luke 14:16-24. It reads;
16 Jesus replied with this story: “A man prepared a great feast and sent out many invitations. 17 When the banquet was ready, he sent his servant to tell the guests, ‘Come, the banquet is ready.’ 18 But they all began making excuses. One said, ‘I have just bought a field and must inspect it. Please excuse me.’ 19 Another said, ‘I have just bought five pairs of oxen, and I want to try them out. Please excuse me.’ 20 Another said, ‘I just got married, so I can’t come.’
21 “The servant returned and told his master what they had said. His master was furious and said, ‘Go quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and invite the poor, the crippled, the blind, and the lame.’ 22 After the servant had done this, he reported, ‘There is still room for more.’ 23 So his master said, ‘Go out into the country lanes and behind the hedges and urge anyone you find to come, so that the house will be full. 24 For none of those I first invited will get even the smallest taste of my banquet.’”
At the time when Jesus came this parable, it was the custom to send out two invitations to a party. Jesus used this to explain the banquet that God has prepared for us in heaven. God’s first invitation came from Moses and the prophets. The second invite came from His Son (Jesus Christ). The religious leaders received the first invite. They believed that they were called to be God’s people. However they rejected the second invitation who was Jesus Christ. The people of Israel believed in the prophets but didn’t believe in Jesus Christ. God sent His Son to a whole world of needy people to tell them that God’s kingdom had arrived and was ready for them.
11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not.
12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: John 1:11-12.
In this parable, many people turned down the invitation to the banquet because the timing was inconvenient. Many people today are delaying their response to God’s invitation because it is not convenient for them. Some have very sound reasonable reasons such as family commitments, work, business, financial needs etc. Many are focused on being wealthy and assume they don’t have the time for God. They are very busy building empires and legacies that has no God in it. This parable is a reminder that the invite isn’t an indefinite one. When our time is up here on earth, we will no longer have the grace to accept the special invite of salvation.
Let us not lose sight of the end result of all our humility and self sacrifice. A joyous banquet with The King awaits us. God never asks us to suffer for the sake of suffering. Jesus is not calling us to come suffer forever. At the end of the self denial is a wedding feast (Revelation 19:6-9) when we will be joined with Him forever.
Next week, we will be looking at another parable.
If you would like to read previous parables, please click here.