Imagine that your dad is rich, fabulously rich. He’s hosting a Superbowl party at his house. The food will be awesome. For example, the steak sandwiches are filets. He has a mega family room with two giant screen TVs - one on each end of the room. In case the game is boring, your dad’s pool, jacuzzi, and pool table in the rec room will be available. This is a party you won’t want to miss. Question? If it was OK with your dad, would you invite a friend?
Now some of you wouldn’t ever want your fabulously rich dad to throw a Superbowl party. Instead, the idea of a great party for you would be a cookout on a private beach or in your beautiful backyard garden. Or maybe your idea of a great party would be a formal wedding reception with a band and an exquisite meal. You design your party. The point is that your dad throws it and it’s the best party you could ever imagine. Question? If it was OK with your dad, would you invite a friend?
Inviting people to a party is a no-brainer if it’s a great party. And that’s exactly what God is asking us to do with our non-Christian friends. He’s throwing a big party for His Son. You are invited. And you’re invited to invite others, too!
Inviting People to the Party
Text: Matthew 22:1-14
Series: Ready, Set, GROW!
We’ve embraced a vision statement here at CVCC that reflects the growing kind of church that God wants us to be. Here’s the statement: "Helping people grow to be passionate followers of Christ." Our dream is to help people grow.
We’ve talked about how the little word "grow" in our vision statement summarizes our basic responsibilities as growing Christians. G = Giving time, talent and treasure. R = Relationships. O = Outreach. W = Worship in private and in public. If these experiences are a part of your life on a consistent basis and are practiced in the power of the Holy Spirit, then you will grow!
Today, we are focusing on the "O" = Outreach. Outreach is sometimes called "witnessing" or "evangelism." Those words often strike fear into the hearts of Christina people. But they don’t have to. Outreach is simply inviting people to a party!
Let me set the stage for this scripture. It’s toward the end of Jesus’ ministry on this earth. For three years, He had been in public ministry. Yet, during this time few Jewish people had accepted Him. In fact, the religious leaders challenged Jesus. "You’re not who you say You are." Jesus told this story to warn these religious leaders of the judgment to come if they would not honor the Son of God. Matthew 22:1-2.
Jesus spoke to them again in parables, saying, "The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a wedding feast for his son.
The King? God the Father. The son? God the Son, Jesus. The wedding? God’s Son, Jesus, the Bridegroom, being fully and finally united with His Bride, the Church. That will be a party that you don’t want to miss!
Many people totally misunderstand what it’s going to be like with God in the life to come. It’s not going to be boring. God likes parties! He’s throwing a party in honor of his Son. God is happy and proud of His Son. Remember when Jesus was baptized? The Father’s voice came out of heaven and said, "This is My Beloved Son in whom I am well-pleased." The Father’s pleasure continued when Jesus died and rose again to purchase His Bride, the Church, for Himself. One day, as it says in Revelation 19, there will be a marriage supper in heaven. The Father is so proud that He’s going to throw a party to celebrate His Son’s marriage to the Church - to all believers everywhere! Yes. There’s a time for reverence and silence before God. But there will be lots of joy when God throws a party for His Son. Be there!
Every Christian here as the incredible privilege and responsibility to invite your family and friends to that unimaginable party! If you do, one day, they’ll walk up to you with a huge smile and a heart filled with gratitude and say, "Thanks. This is awesome!"
This story teaches us some important truths about inviting people to that party.
When inviting people to the party…
I. We will experience some rejection. vv. 3-7
1. Stubbornness. Look at v. 3.
And he sent out his slaves to call those who had been invited to the wedding feast, and they were unwilling to come.
His slaves are witnesses, people like you and me who are called, equipped, and qualified by God to invite our family members and friends to the party. But many people we know are unwilling. They’re stubborn.