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From undeserving to deserving

This is part 6 of a series based upon the Parable of the Marriage Feast in Matthew 22:1-14. Each part stands alone with the other parts supplementing and adding to the whole.

Just like so many other Scriptures that we have looked at in the past, this Passage is so incredibly rich. It just seems like almost every word is oozing with rich, deep meaning. And so to clarify what is being said, we’ll be looking at various Scriptures, concepts, and precepts that are expressed throughout all of the Bible, but primarily throughout the renewed covenant (N/T).

They violently abused and murdered the messagers
Yesterday we discussed verses 7 -9 with an emphasis on verses 8 & 9. Today I would like to invite you to consider a different perspective of verse 9.

The invitation to the great marriage feast is available to you. Will you accept it?

Of course, marriage is about love but the Scriptures reveal to us that love has a lot of different faces; none necessarily better than the other; just different.

Love does not always appear as a hug and a kiss. Sometimes love includes doing unpleasant things that need done.

After the others declined the invitation to the marriage, Matthew 22:8 tells us how the King explained to his servants that those who had been invited were not “worthy”.

I addressed this at some length in part 5 but today I would like to address it from a different perspective.

Who is deserving of God?
You may recall how I discussed that the word “worthy”, in the King James Version, my be better understood if you think of it as “deserving”.

So what changed the status of those who were invited from deserving to underserving? Obviously, the King, who apparently felt that the invitation recipients were deserving before, felt that they didn’t deserve it after they were invited. Why is that?

In the parable, the king clearly represents God. So are we to believe that God made a mistake and invited the wrong people? Did He invite people to the wedding feast that we’re not deserving?

Who is not deserving of God?
Since God doesn’t make mistakes, there must be another explanation. So what is it? What happened that caused the status of those people to change from deserving to not deserving?

Answer: What changed their status from deserving to undeserving is the choices that they made.

God is merciful and gracious. He knew that they were not where they should be spiritually but He gave them the benefit of a new day to make it right. His mercies are new every morning.

Nevertheless, unfortunately for them, their individual choices led them to their doom. They didn’t have to, but it was the choice that THEY made to ignore the invitation that made them unworthy. God didn’t make it for them; they made it for themselves. It wasn’t that he felt slighted as much as just their demonstration of lack.

God is merciful, loving, and tenacious
This parable, along with many other Biblical references, demonstrates God’s ever-reaching arms that reach out for His people.

For example, in Jeremiah, Chapter 16:14-21 we see God doing the same thing that the King does in this parable: He sent out “fishers and hunters” to “beat the bush” to find true God chasers.

Just as you see Jeremiah, and many others, throughout the Scriptures God’s prophets are calling out to seek out the lost.

And just as God sent the prophets of old to the people of Israel; just as the King sent out his messengers in the parable, we see that Yeshua even did the very same thing.

Matthew 8:28 records Yeshua going to the other side of the sea, to find a man who had been overcome by evil spirits. The Scriptures say that he was exceedingly fierce; even to the degree that no one would go near the area that he was “living”.

This man was so scary that the same Greek word to describe him, “fierce”, is also used to describe the “perilous” times that Apostle Paul said are coming in 2 Timothy 3:1. It is the only two places that, that word was even used.

Still, Yeshua went across a sea just to set the “fierce” man free.

In this same way, God is calling you forth. He is calling you out into places that others won’t go. He’s saying “Follow after me”. Come to me. Seek those who are lost. Seek those who were not originally invited. It is those who I am calling now. They are deserving.

Blessings in Yeshua
Parson Rayphe
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