Summary: The Parable of the Wedding Feast. (Powerpoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email:


• Be alert (Vs 35)

• Be Waiting and watching (vs 36-40)

• Be specific (vs 41)

• Be Working (vs 42-53)



• When Winston Churchill was in his early thirties;

• He tried with all his powers to awaken the English speaking world;

• To the impending dangers of a resurgent Germany;

• At the time Germany was being influenced by one ‘Corporal Hitler’;

• But Churchill’s warnings were all to no avail.

• So it was therefore ironic

• That after he had done so much to try and avert the conflict.

• That when war broke out:

• Britain turned to Churchill in her fight against Nazism;

• This sense of irony never left him;

• Years later American President Roosevelt asked him the question:

• “What did he feel the war should be called?”

• Churchill answered without hesitation ‘The Unnecessary War’.

• Churchill knew the difficulty of getting people to listen;

• Especially listening to things they did not want to hear;

• And to be confronted with tough choices that will affect a person’s life-style.

• Sadly for many people - only calamity;

• Will make them take notice of things that they should be noticing all of the time.

In Luke chapter 12 Jesus wants his hearers to make some tough choices:

• He has been teaching some important truths:

• And like Churchill he knew his hearers did not want to embrace them;

• For they made huge demands upon a person’s life.

Question: What was this tough teaching?

Answer: Just scan chapter 12 of Luke and you will find out:

• Verses 1-12: Beware of hypocrisy - double standards – be genuine!

• Verses 13-21: Beware of covetousness (longing for money & possessions) – be content!

• Verses 22-34: Beware of worrying – trust in God - be focussed!

• And now in these two parables Jesus again gives us another warning:

• Verses 35-48 Beware of carelessness (beware of negligence).

• In these verses Jesus will shift the emphasis:

• He has been talking about being worried in the present;

• Now he switches the teaching to talk about being concerned about the future.


• This highlighting of ‘being ready’ in these two parables:

• Really complements and completes this previous teaching;

• The best way to overcome and conquer hypocrisy, covetousness and worry;

• Is to look forward to the return of the Lord!

• When you are living in the ‘future’ tense;

• It is much harder for the things of the world to ensnare you.

• Quote: C. S. Lewis:

• “Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in. Aim at earth and you get neither.”

(1). Be alert (Vs 35): “Be dressed ready for service keep your lamps burning”

• As the old joke goes:

• “Be alert because Britain needs lerts”


• There was a king of England called Ethelred,

• (King of England 978–1013 and 1014–1016).

• He earned the nickname ’Ethelred the Unready’.

• I think that nickname was a little unfair because he was only about 10 years old;

• When he came to the throne and was made king.

• Most of his problems were caused by his advisors, his councillors;

• Their poor advice meant that Ethelred was never really prepared to meet his enemies,

• Unable to effectively rouse and army and fight them;

• Ethelred was forced to buy off his enemies.

• This earned him the nick-name ‘Ethelred the unready’.

• Although to be fair to the boy king – it was mainly due to his poor advisors.

Jesus tells his followers in verse 35:

• Don’t be like Ethelred! Instead be prepared!

• N.I.V.: “Be dressed ready for service”

• K.J.B.: “Let your loins be girded about”

• In Jesus day; servants would need to hitch their long robes into their belts;

• This gave them a greater freedom to move around and perform their duties.

• If they did not hitch them up the robes would get in the way and may even trip them up.


• You get dressed when you are going out or you are on duty.

• i.e. At home you may have a lazy day – stay in your pyjamas & remain unshaved.

• But when you go out or are off to work;

• You get prepared i.e. washed, dressed & ready for duty.

• Jesus tells his disciples to have the attitude of always being ready.

• They are to have the attitude of always being on duty;

• Therefore they need always to be prepared!


• ‘Be Prepared’ are well known words to many people;

• Since 1907 they have been the motto of the Boy Scout Movement,

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