Sacrifice

1Corinthians 10:18-22 Behold Israel after the flesh: are not they which eat of the sacrifices partakers of the altar? What say I then? that the idol is any thing, or that which is offered in sacrifice to idols is any thing? But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that you should have fellowship with devils. You cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: you cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils. Do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? are we stronger than he? 

‘The things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that you should have fellowship with devils.’ The fact that sacrifices to idols are really sacrifices to devils is sufficient to condemn all traffic with idols even though they are nothing in themselves (10:18-20). Those who partake of idol worship have fellowship with devils, and those who partake of Christ cannot have fellowship with idols or devils (10:21).

‘Idols’ – the Greek word eidololatreia means image-worship which is also idolatry (10:14; Gal. 5:20; Col. 3:5; 1Pet. 4:3). Idolatry includes anything on which affections are passionately set; extravagant admiration of the heart (Eph. 5:5; Col. 3:5). Any

‘Cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils.’ We cannot partake of the table of devils or anything of the worldly people that serves sin and satan.

‘Do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? are we stronger than he?’ God is provoked to jealousy by our sins. Provoking God to jealousy is referred to 6 times (Deut. 32:16; 1Kin. 14:22; Rom. 10:19; 11:11; 1Cor. 10:22). When His people, whom He commands to have no other gods, insist on mixing idolatry and demon worship with true worship, as some of the Corinthians did and most so-called-Christians today, then God is under obligation to judge them (8:4-13; 10:1-22).

In Exodus 20:5 we read for the first of 10 time of God’s jealousy (Ex. 34:14; Deut. 4:24; 5:9; 6:15; Jos. 24:19; Ezek. 39:25; Joel 2:18; Zech. 1:14; 8:2). There is godly jealousy (2Cor. 11:2), and ungodly (Pro. 6:34; Son. 8:6).

Through Their Fall

Romans 11:11 I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy. 

‘Have they stumbled that they should fall? … how much more their fulness? … For if the casting away of them be the reconciling of the world, what shall the receiving of them be, but life from the dead?’ Have the Jews stumbled to complete and eternal ruin? God forbid. Their ruin is only temporary. In the meantime the Gentiles will take their place to provoke them to jealousy (10:19; 11:11; Deut. 32:21). The fall of the Jews was not in itself the reason for the salvation of the Gentiles. They were to be saved whether the Jews accepted or rejected the gospel (Gen. 12:1-3; Rom. 4:1-25; Gal. 6:8-10). The unbelief of Israel could never give faith to Gentiles. The rejection of Christ by the Jews only accelerated the salvation of the Gentiles (Acts 13:46-48; 28:28).

‘Stumbled’ [Greek: patio] to make a false step or mistake; to fail. Stumble (11:11); fall (2Pet. 1:10) and offend (Jas. 2:10; 3:2).

‘Fall’ [Greek: pipto] to fall down or out, meaning to be slain, or to lose one’s favour or grace. This proves that Israel, by offending or by failing lost the grace or favour of God. “Fall” is used in this sense in many scriptures (Luke 8:13; Acts 1:25; Rom. 11:11-12, 11:22; 1Cor. 10:12; Gal. 5:4; 1Tim. 3:7; 6:9; Heb. 4:11; 6:4-6; 2Pet. 1:10; 3:17; Jude 1:24; Rev. 2:5).

‘Fall’ [Greek: paraptoma] a falling aside, when one should have stood upright; a moral fall; a fall from truth and grace. Fall (11:11-12); fault (Gal. 6:1; Jas. 5:16); offence (4:25; 5:15-20); trespass (Matt. 6:14-15; 18:35; Mark 11:25-26; 2Cor. 5:19; Eph. 2:1; Col. 2:13); and sin (Eph. 1:7; 2:5; Col. 2:13).

‘For to provoke them to jealousy’ – the salvation and blessing of Gentiles will be the means of provoking Jews to seek and claim again their blessings.

Israel fell because: They forsook God (1Kin. 9:9; 11:33; 2Kin. 22:17; 2Chr. 7:22; 24:20; 36:25-27; Jer. 17:12); they sinned (1Kin. 14:15-16; 15:30; 2Chron. 6:24; Jer. 40:3; 44:23); of their transgressions (Lev. 16:16; Deut. 32:5; Josh. 7:15; 1Sam. 24:5); they despised the Lord (Num. 11:20; 15:31; 1Sam. 30:12; 2Sam. 12:10); they turned away from the Lord and would not serve Him (Num. 14:43; Deut. 28:47); they have done evil (2Kin. 21:15); they rebelled (Num. 20:24; Ps. 107:11-17); they would not obey God (Deut. 8:20; 28:62; 1Kin. 20:26; 2Kin. 18:12); they have forsaken the Lord (Deut. 29:25; 1Sam. 12:10; 2Kin. 22:17; 2Chr 24:20-24; 28:6; Jer. 17:13; 19:4; 22:9); they have rejected the Lord (1Sam. 15:17-35); they have not kept His commandments (1Sam. 13:13-14; 1Kin. 11:34); they have cast off the law (Isa. 5:24; Amos 2:4); they have forgotten God (Isa. 17:10; Jer. 17:13; 18:15; Ezek. 23:35); because of their evil and wickedness (Jer. 4:4; 21:12; 26:3; 32:32; 44:3; Hos. 10:15) and of their abominations (Jer. 44:22; Ezek. 5:9; 44:7); they repented not (Matt. 11:20); because of their unbelief (Rom. 11:20; Heb. 4:6).

Not Cast Away

Romans 11:1-4 I say then, Has God cast away his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. God has not cast away his people which he foreknew. Wot you not what the scripture said of Elias? how he makes intercession to God against Israel, saying, Lord, they have killed thy prophets, and digged down thine altars; and I am left alone, and they seek my life. But what said the answer of God unto him? I have reserved to myself seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to the image of Baal.

‘Has God cast away his people? … Wot you not what the scripture said of Elias? … But what said the answer of God unto him?’ What shall we conclude? Has God cast off Israel completely and permanently? God forbid. I am an Israelite myself and proof that God is not through with Jews, but willing to save all that will believe.

‘I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin.’ Paul refers to himself here as proof that God did not cast away His people.

‘Which he foreknew’ God’s foreknowledge [Greek: prognosis] is a perceiving beforehand where it refers to God seeing ahead. God’s invitations, promises, provision, and warnings of punishment are general for all people are invited to choose life and are warned of eternal punishment if they do not do so.

‘Lord, they have killed thy prophets, and digged down thine altars; and I am left alone, and they seek my life’ quoted from 1Kings 19:10-18. This proves the doctrine of the remnant, according to the election of grace (11:5-6; Isa. 1:9).

‘I have reserved to myself seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to the image of Baal’ – this illustrates how God can reserve 144,000 Jews to Himself after the rapture and during the first 3 1/2 years of Daniel’s 70th week (Dan. 9:27; Rev. 7:1-8; 14:1-5).

‘Baal’ the name of the idol god of Moab, and Peor was the name of the place where the idol was worshipped (Num. 25:18; 23:28; Jos. 22:17; Hos. 9:10). Baal-worship was the state religion of Israel under Ahab and Jezebel. It was with this god that Elijah had his great contest (1Kin. 18:1-46). Baal was the male sun-god worshipped as the chief deity among heathen nations in western Asia (Num. 22:41; Jud. 2:13; 6:25-32; 1Kin. 16:31-32; 18:19-26,40; 19:18; 1Kin. 22:53; 2Kin. 3:2; 10:18-28; 11:18; 17:16; 21:3; 23:4-5; 1Chron. 4:33; 5:5; 8:30; 9:36; 2Chron. 23:17; Jer. 2:8; 7:9; 11:13, 17; 12:16; 19:5; 23:13, 27; 32:29, 35; Hos. 2:8; 13:1; Zeph. 1:4; Rom. 11:4). His altars and sanctuaries were located on high places-even the summits of high mountains-in order to get the first view of the rising sun, the last of the setting sun. The sun was believed to be the source and emblem of all life and the generative power of nature.

Have They Not Heard?

Romans 10:18-21 But I say, Have they not heard? Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world. But I say, Did not Israel know? First Moses said, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people, and by a foolish nation I will anger you. But Esaias is very bold, and said, I was found of them that sought me not; I was made manifest unto them that asked not after me. But to Israel he said, All day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people. 

‘Did not Israel know?’ Paul here answers a third question in the Jewish mind: “Why did not Israel know about these things?” He proves by Moses and Isaiah that they were made clear to Israel centuries ago (10:19-21).

‘I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people, and by a foolish nation I will anger you’ this is the 10th Old Testament prophecy fulfilled in Romans (10:19; Deut. 32:21). Just as Israel made God jealous and angry over their worship of gods which are not real, so God was to provoke Israel to jealousy and anger by choosing a people who were not His chosen ones.

‘I was found of them that sought me not …’ this is the 11th Old Testament prophecy fulfilled in Romans (10:20-21; Isa. 65:1-2). I have put My salvation in reach of the Gentiles who were not seeking for it and who knew nothing about it and they have received it (9:30). As to Israel, I have done my best to save them, but they refuse to listen after many centuries.

‘All day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people’ Five purposes for using Old Testament Scripture: To show similarity of ideas (10:6-8); to show parallel cases (2:24; 8:36; 9:27-29; 11:2-10; 15:21); to explain a doctrinal point (1:17; 4:6-8, 18-21; 9:20-21; 10:15; 15:3); to prove a doctrinal point (3:4, 10-19; 4:3-17; 5:12-14; 9:7-17; 10:5, 11, 13; 12:19-20; 13:9; 14:11); to prove the fulfilment of prophecy (9:25-26, 33; 10:16, 19, 20-21; 11:26-27; 15:9-13).

Judge Righteous Judgment

John 7:19-24 Did not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keep the law? Why go you about to kill me? The people answered and said, Thou hast a devil: who go about to kill thee? Jesus answered and said unto them, I have done one work, and you all marvel. Moses therefore gave unto you circumcision; (not because it is of Moses, but of the fathers;) and you on the sabbath day circumcise a man. If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are you angry at me, because I have made a man every whit whole on the sabbath day? Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment. 

Moses gave the nation of Israel the Law as he received it from God, and the whole summary of the Law (Matt. 22:37-40) was to love God, serve AND obey Him (Deut. 6:5; 7:9; 10:12; 11:1, 13).  Jesus accused the Pharisees of violating the very law they professed to respect and obey, they only kept up the Law for outward appearance that would produce the praise of men and produce followers for their religion (Matt. 23).

Many strangers (people) at the feast were ignorant of the plots of the Pharisees to killed Jesus, so they were astonished at His announcement that they seek Him to kill Him.

This ‘one work’ from verse 21 was the healing of the man on the sabbath (John 7:23; 5:1-16). The Pharisees accused Him of breaking the law and, in the interest of religion, thought He should be killed. He replied that they did more work on the sabbath in circumcising a boy than He did in healing a man, so who was the greater sinner?

The law concerning circumcision was given to Abraham (Gen. 17:9-14); Moses only mentioned the law in Exodus 12:44, 48 and Leviticus 12:3.

‘Judge not according to the appearance’ – Jesus answered those who tried to kill Him for obeying His Father that the covenant of healing (Ex. 15:26) should be obeyed as much as the covenant of circumcision (Gen. 17:9-14); that sickness in their midst proved that they had broken God’s covenant.

The Son of Man Be Lifted Up 

John 3:9-14 Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be? Jesus answered and said unto him, Art thou a master of Israel, and know not these things? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness. If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things? And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up 

The question Nicodemus asked Christ should have been clear to him if he had known such Scripture as Jeremiah 31:33; 32:39; Ezekiel 11:19; 18:31; 36:25-27; Psalm 51:10; Isaiah 1:18-20; 55:6 which says “I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.”

‘Art thou a master of Israel, and know not these things?’ Jesus expected him to know the Scriptures enough to be saved, but he was like most people today, even many ministers who do not know what the new birth is.

‘You receive not our witness’ This is the only hint that Nicodemus at this time went away in doubt about spiritual things, but later it is clear he accepted them (John 19:39).

The earthly things in this passage are in John 3:6 and 8 and the heavenly in John 3:3, 5, 6 and 8.

The Greek word for ‘ascended up’ is anabaino which means to go up of own power, not taken up as was Enoch (Gen. 5:24; Heb. 11:5), Elijah (2Kin. 2:11), Paul (2Cor. 12:1-3), and John (Rev. 4:1). This refers to the ascension of Christ (John 3:13; 6:62; Acts 1:11; Lk. 24:51; Eph. 4:8-10). Christ ascended and came back before His final ascension to heaven to stay (John 20:17).

The verse ‘is in heaven’ proves that Jesus had already ascended when John wrote this book; that the conversation with Nicodemus ended with John 3:12; and that Jesus was now in heaven.

The fourth New Testament prophecy in John that is fulfilled ‘And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up (Num. 21:9; John 8:28; 12:32, 34; 1Pet. 2:24). It behoved Christ to be crucified in order to fulfil prophecy and to redeem man (Lk. 24:26, 46; Acts 3:18; 17:3).

Baptism

John 1:25-28  And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptize thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet? John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there stand one among you, whom ye know not; He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe’s latchet I am not worthy to unloose. These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing. 

Jews were accustomed to making converts by ceremonial cleansing, but never without an order from the Sanhedrin or before three magistrates or doctors of the law. They, therefore, felt jealous of John, who not only baptized without Jewish authority but baptized Jews contrary to the practice of the Pharisees.

John’s reason for baptizing was that the Messiah should be made manifest (known) to Israel (John 1:26-31).  There are seven baptisms in Scripture: John’s baptism in water to introduce Christ to Israel (Matt. 3:1-17; Mark 1:1-45; Lk. 3:1-38; 7:29-30; John 1:31-33; 3:23-26; 10:40; Acts1:5; 11:16; 19:3); Christ’s baptism in water (John 3:22; 4:1-2) which announced the beginning of His three year ministry and showed His purpose as the one without sin that will clean the world with water (washing in the Word) and by shedding His blood at His crucifixion (1Jn 5:7-8); Baptism in suffering (Lk. 12:50); Baptism in the cloud and in the sea (1Cor. 10:2) refers to Moses and the nation Israel going through the Red Sea that was a type of the washing that we have to go through for salvation as we are called out of the bondage of sin (Egypt); and the last three that is relevant and necessary for today’s Christians:  Baptism into Christ and into His body (Rom. 6:3-7; 1Cor. 12:13; Gal. 3:27; Col. 2:12) at repentance and the new birth; Christian baptism in water (Matt. 28:19; Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38-41; 8:12-16, 36-38; 9:18; 10:47-48; 16:15, 33; 18:8; 19:5; 22:16; 1Cor. 1:13-17; 1Pet. 3:21) this is for testifying of dying to one’s old nature after being reborn; Baptism in the Holy Spirit (Matt. 3:11, 14; 20:22-23; Mark 1:810:38-39; Lk. 3:16; John 1:33; 7:37-39; Acts 1:5; 11:16; 19:2-3) which is the enduement of power for service.

The Holy Spirit is the agent to baptize into Christ and into His body; Christ is the agent to baptize in the Holy Spirit, and the minister is the agent to baptize into water (Matt. 28:19).

The Parable of the Good Man of the House

But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.  Mat 24:43-44 KJV

Jesus here illustrates the need for readiness in view of His return to the Earth at an unpredictable time, so that each individual will escape the “sudden destruction” that will overtake those who are not ready.

And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.  For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.  Luke 21:34-36 KJV

The feasts of the Lord Lev. 23 were given to Israel as illustrations and through them God was teaching the gospel to the world and because there was no written Word yet, they typified things to come.  Let’s have a look at the meaning behind each one:

Fulfilled

  1. The yearly Passover feast Lev. 23:4-5; Num. 28:16; Ex. 12:1-39. typified the crucifixion of Christ Matt. 27:32-56
  2. The yearly feast of unleavened bread 23:6-8; Num. 28:17-25; Ex. 12:8,15-20btypified the burial of Christ Matt. 27:57-61
  3. The yearly feast of firstfruits 23:9-14; Num. 28:26-31 typified the resurrection of Christ Matt. 28:1-10; 2Cor. 15:2-23
  4. The yearly feast of Pentecost Lev. 23:15-21; 28:26-31 also known as the feast of harvest Exo. 23:16 and the feast of weeks Exo. 34:22; Deu. 16:10 typified the outpouring of the Holy Spirit Acts 2:1-4

Unfulfilled

  1. The yearly feast of trumpets Lev. 23:23-25; 29:1-6; typifies the rapture 1Cor. 15:52; 1 Thess. 4:13-18; Rev. 4:1
  2. The yearly feast of atonement Lev. 23:26-32; 29:7-11 typifies the Second Coming of Christ Rev. 19:11-21
  3. The yearly feast of tabernacles Lev. 23:33-34; 29:12-40 typifies the 1000 year Reign Isa. 65:6-66:24; Rev. 20:2-7

Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.  But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.  For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ 1Thess. 5:6-9 KJV

The Parable of the Fig Tree

Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:  So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.  Mat 24:32-33 KJV

This is the first of five parables in Matthew 24 & 25 and is just a simple illustration of the nearness of Christ’s Second Advent as well as the rapture (7 years earlier), which is the subject of Matthew 24-25. “Now learn a parable [illustration] of the fig tree [Luke adds “and all the trees” 21:29], when his branch is yet tender and putteth forth leaves ye know [what?] that summer is nigh: so likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things [the signs of Christ’s coming of Matthew 24:4-26], know that it [the Second Advent, not the restoration of Israel] is near, even at the doors” Mt. 24:32-33

“This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled” Mt. 24:34 The last generation living on earth, at the time all these things will be fulfilled.  We do not have to use this parable for the basis of the doctrine of the restoration of Israel, for there are many plain passages that cover that doctrine satisfactorily. Then too, that all of Matthew 24:4-26 is fulfilled in one generation is further evident from this parable of the fig tree, for no tree puts forth leaves throughout the season. This proves that all these things will be fulfilled in one generation only and not in several of them.

Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.  In Matthew 24:34-35 we have the infallibility of the above truths stated. Heaven and Earth shall be changed, but these truths shall not be changed. Lk. 16:16; Heb. 1:10-12 The Greek word for “pass away” in this passage means “pass from one state to another” and not “cessation of existence,” as proven in 2 Cor. 5:17c all things are become new and other passages. The Heaven and the Earth will never be annihilated.

The Parable of the Marriage Feast

And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said, The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son, And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come. Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage. But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise: And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them. But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy. Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage. So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests. And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless. Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. For many are called, but few are chosen. Mat 22:1-14 KJV

This parable is not to be confused with the parable of the great supper in Luke 14:16-24. Neither of these stories is an illustration of the Marriage Supper of the Lamb of Revelation 19:1-10. These passages are illustrations of the kingdom of Heaven in this age. The certain king making a marriage (marriage feast) for his son illustrates God, who has made possible the blessings of the kingdom and the Gospel to all. Jn. 3:16; Rom. 8:32; 1 Cor. 2:9  The Jews were the first ones invited, but they would not come. Mt. 10:5-7; 15:21-28; Jn. 1:11-13 The occasion for this parable was the rejection of Christ by the Jews. Mt. 21:42-46  The servants sent out were Christ, the apostles, the seventy, and the early ministers of the Church. All went first to Israel, but met with no response, as far as the nation was concerned. They were persecuted and killed until the city was destroyed and Israel was scattered. Mt. 24:2; Lk. 21:20-24; Acts 2:22-24; 7:54-60; 8:1-8; 13:44-49; Rom. 11

All things are ready” 22:4 illustrates the time for the Jews to accept their Messiah and the time for the fulfillment of the promise made to their fathers concerning the kingdom.  “But they made light of it” 22:5; Acts 13:45-49; 18:6; Mt. 23:37-39 The rejection of Jesus by Israel freed God from all responsibility to them in fulfilling His covenants with them, so His program became a worldwide one for all men. Jn. 3:16; Rom. 1:16; 2Cor. 12:13

At the rejection of the Jews by God, because they would not accept the invitation to partake of the blessings, God began to invite all kinds of people, as in the parables in Matthew 13.  The man without the wedding garment illustrates the ones in the kingdom of Heaven in this age, or during their lifetime, who fail to prepare for eternity, or for their place in the literal kingdom of Heaven, when it is set up at the return of Christ. Mt. 18:1-4; Jn. 3:3-8; Rev. 19:7-8 This life is the only time men have to put on that righteousness of the saints in order to get into the real, literal kingdom.  This negligent man was commanded to be put in the same furnace of fire in which the tares, bad fish, and all the wicked were commanded to be put at the end of this age. Mt. 13:37-43, 49-50; 24:51; 25:31-46; Rev. 20:11-15

The central truth which the story illustrates is stated in verse 14.  It is the same truth the parable of the laborers in the vineyard illustrates. “For many are called, but few are chosen,” or “whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted”. Lk. 14:11; 18:14  The difference in the two parables is that the one story illustrates the importance of humility in service, while this one illustrates the importance of preparation in this life to be chosen of God and accepted when we shall see Him. All are called to salvation, Mt. 11:28; Jn. 3:16; Rev. 22:17 but few will finally be saved. Mt. 7:13-14; Lk. 13:23-30

Jesus was teaching these Jews who desired His life and who rejected Him as their Messiah that they were not worthy of the blessings that He had in store for them, that the Gentiles and individual Jews who accepted the invitation would be blessed with the things that the Jewish nation rejected, and that there must be a preparation made before they would be admitted into the presence of God. The necessary preparation was to put on the wedding garment or change their raiment. It was the custom in the East for royal guests to put on garments provided, else they would be excluded from the feasts. A rejection of the garment provided was taken as an insult and a total disregard for the one who provided the garment. It was an avowal that the guest denied the authority and despised the power of the one providing the raiment. This was exactly true of the Jews who refused the teaching of Christ, which was able to make them wise unto salvation.

I will answer the call by choosing God’s salvation through Jesus Christ; I will not deny the authority or despise the power that is provided, so that I can be prepared and be admitted into the presence of God.