Listen:  85 Question 3

This is such a nice portion with some very good lessons for us to learn.  Let’s read Matthew 22:1-14, “And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said, The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son, And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come. Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage. 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. And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless. 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. For many are called, but few are chosen.”

This is a parable concerning a king and the wedding of his son.  There is a dispensational teaching in that there was, at first, a particular and chosen guest list to this wedding.  This is in reference to the kingdom being offered to the nation of Israel.  Speaking of the Lord Jesus, John 1:11 says, “He came unto his own, and his own received him not.”  “His own” indicates His own people: the Jewish people.  We see in this parable that the people who were bidden refused to come.  Some made light of the invitation and left and some took the servants of the Lord and treated them badly, even killing some of them.  Notice that for these Jewish people, there were two invitations to the wedding that were given.  The second invitation announced that all things were now ready.  These two invitations represent the call to Israel before and after the Lord Jesus died on the cross for them.  In the Apostle Peter’s great speech on the day of Pentecost, he urges the nation of Israel to repent and come to the Lord.   Acts 2:36-38 says, “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ. Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”

Once again, the nation of Israel rejected God’s offer of salvation through the Lord Jesus Christ.  In our parable in Matthew 22, we see that the invitation was then sent to those along the highways.  It was for any who wanted to come.  This speaks of the Gentiles being offered access to God’s grace.  Paul, who was the Apostle to the Gentiles, was speaking to a group of Jewish people in Jerusalem that opposed this offer of grace.  We read in Acts 13:46-47, “Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles. For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles, that thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ends of the earth.”

The phrase, “Kingdom of Heaven” is only found in the book of Matthew.  It is different from the Kingdom of God.  The Kingdom of God refers to all those who truly believe on the Lord Jesus Christ.  The Kingdom of Heaven refers to all those who claim to be a part of God’s Kingdom under Heaven, whether they truly believe or not.  I encourage you to read the parable of the ten virgins in Matthew 25 to see there are those truly saved and those who only claim to be saved in the Kingdom of Heaven.  Here in our parable concerning the Kingdom of Heaven, we find many coming to receive this offer of grace…good and bad people.  That’s because the Gospel is offered to all.

As the king looks over the guests at the wedding, He finds a man there without a wedding garment and immediately has him expelled from the wedding.  What kind of garment was the king expecting this man to be wearing?   Isaiah 61:10 says, “I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.”  It was the robe of righteousness that this man was missing.  This shows that he was not truly a believer, but only one that claimed to believe on the Lord.  It is the king that noticed this man was not dressed properly.  It seems the servants and other guests did not realize this man was not dressed with a robe of righteousness.  2 Timothy 2:19 assures us that, “Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his…”  While others may have thought this man belonged at the wedding, the Lord knew his heart.  He knew he was not dressed in a robe of righteousness; He knew this man was not truly saved.

Dear friend, there are many today who profess to be saved but are not.  The day will come that the Lord will make known those who are false.  Matthew 7:22-23 says, “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”  I trust that you have truly put your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ for your salvation and are not counting on your own works of righteousness.  Isaiah 64:6 tells us, “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.”  (85.3)