The Marriage Feast, Part Two

Matthew 22: 5 -10 . “But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise: And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them. But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. 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. So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found both bad and good, and the wedding was furnished with guests.”

Israel’s rejection of the king’s invitation to the marriage feast is described here as “making light of it.” They scorned the invitation, going off to their farms and shops to make money while the banquet hall awaited them. Not only did they refuse the invitation; they also mistreated the King’s servants and even killed them. 

The king will be patient only for a time. When he heard of the rejection of his invitation and the murder of his servants, harsh judgment followed. He sent his armies to their city,  burned it down, and destroyed those who had murdered his servants. Calling those murderers unworthy guests, he then told his servants to go out into the highways and find whoever they could to come to the wedding. 

This is the point at which the gospel became available to the Gentiles, those who were not invited in the first invitations. Since Israel (the original guests) had rejected the king, he then offered the feast to all nations. Indeed, many have come to the banquet hall and enjoyed the generosity of the good news!

It wasn’t long after Jesus returned to heaven that the Roman army came in all its might and destroyed Jerusalem, desecrating the temple and killing hundreds, and burning the city with fire. The nation was dispersed, and Jesus’ prophecy in this parable was fulfilled.  But God’s Word never returns empty, and there were believing Jews who were in that dispersal who carried the gospel with them to the nations. The whole world has been blessed with the invitation to the marriage feast!

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