Invitation to the Great Banquet
The parable of the Great Banquet (Luke 14:16-24) gives amazing insight into the Kingdom of Heaven. There are a number of characters in this short story; the host, the servant, the many invited, those that declined with lame excuses, the disadvantaged, and everyone else. In all the sermons and commentary, the focus is on the host (God) giving the banquet, on those who rejected the invitation, and everyone else. But none that I could find gave attention to the servant.
The servant was the one tasked with reminding those who had been invited that the banquet was ready. He was the one who faced disappointment at their rejections. He was the one who had to go to the downtrodden and invite them in to the great feast. And because the party crowd was not big enough, the servant then had to go outside the walls and out to the roads to compel, urge, insist, persuade others to come so that His house would be full.
This is what we are called to do. Let others know the banquet is for them. That effort is a big enterprise. You can be a part of it with the skills the Lord has invested in you. See how easy it is to find options for involvement in His global cause. Start the conversation by entering a profile at missionnext.org with your criteria for serving.
It was the early disciples, the Apostle Paul, and the early church that saw themselves as servants of the Lord—bondservants of Christ. That baton to serve has now been passed on to us.
We are not our own; we are bought with a price. [1 Corinthians 6:19-20]
Offer your bodies as a living sacrifice. That is only reasonable. [Romans 12:1]
Run with perseverance the race set before you. [Hebrews 12:1]
Nelson Malwitz, Founder
The Parable of the Great Banquet – Luke 14:
16 Jesus replied: “A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests. 17 At the time of the banquet he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’
18 “But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said, ‘I have just bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please excuse me.’
19 “Another said, ‘I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’
20 “Still another said, ‘I just got married, so I can’t come.’
21 “The servant came back and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and ordered his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame.’
22 “‘Sir,’ the servant said, ‘what you ordered has been done, but there is still room.’
23 “Then the master told his servant, ‘Go out to the roads and country lanes and compel them to come in, so that my house will be full. 24 I tell you, not one of those who were invited will get a taste of my banquet.’”