Week 7-Luke 14:12-24 – The Great Banquet

Stories | April 9, 2020

Throughout Lent, we have been following Jesus, watching as he restored people physically and spiritually, restoring people back into community. Jesus did not only restore people to community, he taught people to do the same.

Jesus taught that when people gather, they should not just invite those who they know and who are like them. He told them to invite those who are, “poor, crippled, lame and blind”. Jesus said that if they do this then they will be blessed. When they invite people to their gatherings who cannot return the favour, then they will be blessed in ways they were not expecting. Ways they were not looking for.

Through this teaching, Jesus was restoring divisions between people and those who were marginalised.

I grew up believing that I was a burden to people. I have cerebral palsy. I thought I was a burden because I needed help with day-to-day tasks. I need people to pick me up on their way to church. It took me a long time to learn that I’m a blessing, not a burden. I can’t return the favour of picking people up. But I bless people through who I am. My humour, my compassion, my thoughtfulness. I have realised that people are happy to pick me up.

Jesus went on to tell a parable where those who have worldly riches don’t come to the dinner they’re invited to. They’re distracted by their wordily riches and responsibilities. So people with disabilities are invited instead.

I don’t have the energy to work full-time. I don’t have the money to buy a house. I spend a lot of time reflecting with God. I’m not too busy to do so. So my conversations and reflections on God is often what comes up in my conversations with people.

Who do you know who has a disability?
Who do you know is on the outskirts of your community?
Have you invited them into friendship with you?
What steps could you take to develop relationships with them?

Through his death and resurrection, Jesus is restoring each one of us, and bringing us together. He will continue this work until we are completely restored, Following Jesus involves helping others to be restored.

Bible Passage – Luke 14:12-24

“Then Jesus said to his host, “When you give a luncheon or dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or sisters, your relatives, or your rich neighbours; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”

When one of those at the table with him heard this, he said to Jesus, “Blessed is the one who will eat at the feast in the kingdom of God.”

Jesus replied: “A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests. At the time of the banquet he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’

“But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said, ‘I have just bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please excuse me.’

“Another said, ‘I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’

“Still another said, ‘I just got married, so I can’t come.’

“The servant came back and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and ordered his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame.’

“‘Sir,’ the servant said, ‘what you ordered has been done, but there is still room.’

“Then the master told his servant, ‘Go out to the roads and country lanes and compel them to come in, so that my house will be full. I tell you, not one of those who were invited will get a taste of my banquet.’”

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