The Great Banquet
Luke 14:1-6, 12-24
Jesus invites you to compel hurting and broken people to join the great banquet of his kingdom.
Who Jesus Rejects…
Religious People (14:1-6)
“The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Look at him! A glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’”
-Jesus Mocking the Pharisees’ Criticisms in Matthew 11:19
In a classic setup, the Pharisees invite Jesus to a dinner party to see whether Jesus would break their religious rules to heal a man on the Sabbath or whether Jesus would deny healing compassion (14:2-3).
The cold heart of a religious regulator cares more for fighting over man-made regulations being violated rather than Jesus transforming broken lives (14:4-6).
1) See No Need For Jesus
Religion causes a spiritual smugness that falsely assures you by blinding you to your true condition.
“And the scribes of the Pharisees, when they saw that he was eating with sinners and tax collectors, said to his disciples, ‘Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?’ And when Jesus heard it, he said to them, ‘Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.’”
2) Need Genuine Faith
Religion leads to superficial faith because it makes you think that you are right with God through obeying “human commandments and teachings” (Col. 2:22-23).
“Yet we know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will be justified.”-Galatians 2:16
Who Jesus Receives…
Broken People (14:12-15)
The Pharisee mentality is to surround yourself with only those who can return the favor of friendship and repay the kindness of an invitation (14:12-13; Mt. 5:46-47; Lk. 6:31-34).
Jesus’ challenges you to give a “feast” and “invite” broken people “who cannot repay you” because you want to get them into the kingdom of God (Lk. 14:12-15).
Jesus’ kingdom is like an invitation to a “great banquet” of finest foods that is to be shared with as “many” as possible yet some will reject (14:15-16).
When you reject what is eternally important for something that is momentarily significant, you are making eternally fatal “excuses” (14:17-18).
You can take a good thing like your career and make it a god-thing so that it prevents you from following Jesus and entering the kingdom (14:18).
Possessions can own you by distracting you from making Jesus the pursuit of your life (14:19; Mt. 19:24; Lk. 18:25).
Family responsibilities can inundate your life so you refuse to follow Jesus’ will for your life (Mt. 8:22; 10:37; Lk. 9:59; 14:26).
“No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”-Jesus in Luke 9:62
Your love for career, possessions, and family can prevent you from entering Jesus’ kingdom (14:18-20).
1) Are Open to Jesus
“Truly, I tell you, the tax collectors and prostitutes will get into the kingdom of God before you...Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people producing its fruits.”-Matthew 21:31 & 43
You can get in a comfort zone of only loving, befriending and inviting people to Jesus who look, sound, and live like you while not engaging those whose lives are most broken and consequently most open to Jesus.
2) Are Open to Hospitality
“Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers...”-Hebrews 13:2
Christian hospitality creates open doors of opportunity for people to hear and believe Jesus’ gospel.
Who Jesus Invites…
Everyone from Everywhere (14:21-24)
Jesus’ command is to “go out quickly” with the intention to “bring in” everyone from everywhere into his kingdom (14:21).
The church exists to “go out” and “compel people” to “come in” so Jesus house is “filled” (14:23).
Jesus is the host of the coming eternal banquet and only those who accept his invitation as his guest will “taste” the banquet in heaven (14:24; Rev. 19:6-9).
1) Need Inviting
“Eighty-two percent of the unchurched are at least somewhat likely to attend church if invited.”-Dr. Thom Rainer, The Unchurched Next Door
“Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.”-Romans 10:17
2) Need Salvation
Jesus’ kingdom is a celebratory feast where a great party is hosted by Jesus for his people (Amos 9:11-15; Isa. 25:6-9; Mt. 22:1-14; 25:1-13; Rev. 19:9).
“For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people.”-Titus 2:11