King of Kings: Jesus According to Matthew - Kingdom Conflict, Kingdom Hope

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Two Kingdoms in Conflict

Confrontation with Jewish Religious Leaders

“Jesus entered the temple courts, and, while he was teaching, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him. "By what authority are you doing these things?" they asked. "And who gave you this authority?" (Matthew 21:23)

Jesus directed His teaching to the Opposition 

“I tell you the truth, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you. For John came to you to show you the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes did. And even after you saw this, you did not repent and believe him.” (Matthew 21:31-32)

Rejection and the Consequences

“The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone; the Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes'?”  (Psalm 118:22)

"Therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit.” (Matthew 21:43)


The Parable of the Wedding Feast

“The kingdom of heaven is like a king who prepared a wedding banquet for his son. He sent his servants to those who had been invited to the banquet to tell them to come, but they refused to come. “Then he sent some more servants and said, 'Tell those who have been invited that I have prepared my dinner: My oxen and fattened cattle have been butchered, and everything is ready. Come to the wedding banquet.' "But they paid no attention and went off — one to his field, another to his business. The rest seized his servants, mistreated them and killed them. The king was enraged. He sent his army and destroyed those murderers and burned their city. 

"Then he said to his servants, 'The wedding banquet is ready, but those I invited did not deserve to come. Go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.' So the servants went out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find, both good and bad, and the wedding hall was filled with guests.  "But when the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes. ‘Friend,' he asked, 'how did you get in here without wedding clothes?' The man was speechless.  "Then the king told the attendants, 'Tie him hand and foot, and throw him outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'  "For many are invited, but few are chosen." (Matthew 22:2-14)

The Story

  • No response to the RSVP

  • Second invitation refused

  • Violence and the king’s response

  • New and grateful invitees

  • The “friend” with the wrong clothes

  • The difference between “called” and “chosen”

Understanding the Parable

  • The king is God the Father

  • The son is Jesus

  • The servants are the prophets and apostles

  • The invitation is to repent and enter the Kingdom of God

  • Those rejecting the invitation are the religious leaders

A problem with “good”

"There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God.” (Romans 3:10-11)  

The right response:  “The Lord … is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)  

All have sinned, all need forgiveness, all are called to repentance.

Choosing and chosen

  • Many people are too busy, wrapped up in their own world, or have their own idea of how to get to heaven, or too busy being angry with God and resisting Him. The result is few are chosen.

  • Chosen is connected to those God foreknew. “For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.” (Romans 8:29)

  • God knows who will respond to His call, they become His chosen.

Kingdom Hope: The Coming Wedding Feast in the Kingdom of God

Then I heard what sounded like a great multitude, like the roar of rushing waters and like loud peals of thunder, shouting:  "Hallelujah!  For our Lord God Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory!  For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear."  (Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of the saints.)  Then the angel said to me, "Write: 'Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!'" And he added, "These are the true words of God." (Revelation 19:6-9)

The Right Response to the Invitation

The feast is available to all who will come, the invitation is open to all.

He (Jesus) was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own (the Jewish people – the original invitees), but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God. (John 1:10-13)

All Things Will Be New

“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new!" Then he said, "Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true." (Revelation 21:1-5)

5 Wedding Feast Principles

  • Knowing about God is not the same as knowing God.

  • God has ordained work, but work is not to be our “god.”

  • Self-righteous rags or righteous garments

  • A Kingdom call demands a Kingdom response

  • The Coming Wedding Feast gives us great hope

Reflecting on Wedding Feast Principles  (build slide)

  • Do I know about God or do I reall know Him?

  • Do I need to reset my priorities?

  • Do I need to change out my wardrobe?

  • What do I need to surrender?

  • Recognize that Kingdom Conflict still exists, Focus on Hope!

Communing with The Lord  (build slide)

  • “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves.” (2 Corinthians 13:5)

  • Communion looks back to the atonement of Jesus and foreshadows the great Wedding Feast to come in the Kingdom of God!

  • "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.” (John 14:1-4)