Friday, June 25, 2010

Wedding Garments

The twenty-first chapter of Matthew records several parables Christ gave to His listeners. Apparently a number of people understood them, especially the priests and Pharisees.

And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard his parables, they perceived that he spake of them. But when they sought to lay hands on him, they feared the multitude, because they took him for a prophet. [Matthew 21:45-46 KJV]

That didn’t slow Jesus down at all. He began another parable that I’d like to think about today.

The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son, [Matthew 22:2 KJV]

We are taught that heaven is very much as a king who has planned a marriage for his son – as God has prepared a marriage for His Son. As God sent forth prophets to invite His people to come to Him, the king sent out messengers to attend the wedding of his beloved son.

And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come. [Matthew 22:3 KJV]

This king’s messengers received many of the same responses God’s messengers received. The same His messengers receive today. Those invited did not come. In fact, some of the king’s messengers were killed. His judgment was made and executed. The wedding would go on and another group would be invited.

Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy. Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage. [Matthew 22:8-9 KJV]

Of those who came, one came unprepared. He accepted the invitation knowing who extended it. He could see the other guests attended in garments suitable for the wedding. The king asked “Why?”

And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless. [Matthew 22:12 KJV]

When we stand before the great white throne described in Revelation 20, will we be prepared for the wedding? Will we be clothed in white as those who worship before His throne?

After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb. [Revelation 7:9-10 KJV]

Showing up dressed in our regular garments, without preparing ourselves, we are not presentable. The parable was explicit as to the man who came unprepared.

Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. [Matthew 22:13 KJV]

The invitation has been sent out. Attending? Dressed for the occasion?

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