Verses 12-24 contain the “Parable of the Great Banquet.” Jesus begins addressing the man who invited him. He tells him that whenever he gives a dinner or a banquet, he should not invite his friends, family, or rich neighbors, but instead he should invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind. The former group of people will be likely to return his graciousness by inviting him to a feast of their own, whereas the latter will be unable to do so.
But He tells the man that he will blessed because he will be repaid at the “resurrection of the just.” Unlike the Sadducees, the Pharisees believed in the resurrection of the dead (Acts 23:8), so the point was well taken. The more often we read God’s word, the clearer it becomes how important it is to God that we treat very well those who are poor or physically disadvantaged. God makes the point over and over again through the prophets in the Old Testament; and Jesus does so time and again by His words and His actions. Generosity and kindness to others in those situations truly matters.
But Jesus is not finished with the lesson. When one of those at table commented “blessed is everyone who will eat bread in the kingdom of God,” Jesus began the parable. A man planned a “great banquet,” and had invited a great many people. When the time came for it to be held, he sent his servant around to remind everyone that the time had arrived. But he received one excuse after another from people who were too busy with the affairs of this life to attend. So the man became angry, and instead he filled his house with the poor, the crippled, the blind, and finally with anyone his servant met that would come. And the man declared that none of those who had originally been invited would be allowed to attend, should they change their mind.
It is not hard to figure out the meaning of the parable. The man giving the banquet represents God and the banquet represents the kingdom. Those invited first were God’s chosen people, and their excuses were the rejection of the Christ. And of course, the last group brought in represents the Gentiles – all who will come.
Did any of those who were “reclining at table” really understand this? Perhaps some did. It took Peter and the other apostles a while to truly get it (Acts 10, Acts 15:6-11), but God made sure that they did.
(This year’s reading plan for Luke, Acts, and 1 and 2 Chronicles averages just 15 verses per day – 5 days per week!)
Schedule for this week
Read or listen to audio of today’s selection from Luke here
Read or listen to audio of today’s selection from 1 Chronicles here
some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers
Please note: I did not design the reading plan that I am following in my blog. All of my comments in this blog, however, are solely my responsibility. When reading ANY commentary, you should ALWAYS refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word. Reading schedules, as well as a link to the site where you can get the reading plan that I’m currently following for yourself can be found on the “Bible Reading Schedules” page of my website at http://graceofourlord.com.