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The Parable of the Great Banquet Lessons

The Parable of the Great Banquet

The Parable of the Great Banquet is included in one of the four Gospels in the New Testament. It is in Luke 14:15-24 NIV. The Parable of the Great Banquet is also known as The Parable of the Great Feast. Sometimes the Parable of the Great Banquet is confused with the Parable of the Wedding Feast (Parable of the Wedding Banquet) that’s included in Matthew Chapter 22. With their differences in mind, lessons from the Parable of the Wedding Banquet (Feast) are covered in a different post.

The Parable of the Great Banquet Summary

In the Parable of the Great Banquet, a man invited many guests to his banquet, but when the meal was ready, the invited guests found many reasons why they couldn’t attend. So the man sent his servants to go out and invite everyone they could find, including the poor, lame, and sick.

Parable of the Great Feast Setting

Before Jesus told the parable of the great banquet, He was instructing the host of His meal that a host should not invite his friends, family, or wealthy people to his meal because they might repay him later. Instead, he should invite those who cannot repay him. With that, the host would be repaid at the resurrection.

The Parable of the Great Banquet Meaning – Historical Context

At the time Jesus told the parable of the great banquet, he was guiding his apostles. 

Those who refused the invitation to the banquet symbolized the Jews who were offered salvation but rejected Jesus instead. When the Jews refused to follow Christ, the apostles were to turn their attention to the Gentiles to fill the banquet hall, or bring people to God’s Kingdom.

The Parable of the Great Banquet Meaning – Present Day

The message of the Good News of Christ is an invitation to everyone today. We can accept our invitation to the banquet or not. Everyone is welcome, but not everyone will attend. Those who accept the invitation are rewarded with the beautiful feast of salvation.

The banquet God offers us is the mercy and grace we receive through the Gospel, that is, through Christ.

The Great Banquet Parable Lessons for today

1. They all had excuses for not coming.

The people who refused to come to the man’s banquet were busy. Life got in the way. But nothing in life has more priority than God. To shirk off God’s invitation because we’re too busy for church, too tired to pray, too arrogant to help the beggar, or too anything that God’s asked us to do, is a huge slap in God’s face.

2. He’s extended an invitation to us.

God has called us to His banquet, His Kingdom, through Christ. If we dismiss His invitation, for whatever reason, God moves on. He doesn’t force us to love Him, to spend time with Him, or to care for His people. Instead, He moves on to call others. He will fill His Kingdom, with or without us.

3. Those of us who accept Jesus’ invitation aren’t capable of repayment.

Humans are too sinful to be worthy of Jesus’ invitation, but He doesn’t care. All are welcome. The poor and the lowly are as welcome as the rich and famous. His invitation and our accepting it is the only path to our salvation. There is no repayment expected. All we have to do is show up.

4. The most Christ-like way of giving is to those who cannot repay

Before Jesus told this parable, He instructed the host of His meal that a host should not invite his friends, family, or wealthy people to his meal because they might repay him later. Instead, he should invite those who cannot repay him. With that, the host would be repaid at the resurrection.

Jesus says we will be blessed for helping or extending kindness to those who can’t repay us.

12 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 neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. 13 But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, 14 and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”

Luke 14: 12-14 NIV

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Parable of the Banquet Commentary

The Great Banquet Parable Commentary is found at Bible Study Tools.com. This link will lead you to the free Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary, but you can find other Biblical commentaries HERE. They include free and paid versions. I have referred to Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary for this post.

More Parables!

Do you love the parables as much as I do? You may enjoy reading life lessons on these others (listed below), these activities for adults and children, or this list of Parables and Meanings. More parable lessons are underway. See them all HERE!

Do you love journaling? Does writing down your personal reflections help you process your thoughts more fully? Perhaps these Christian writing journals will be helpful as you reflect on the life lessons of the parables.

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Photo by Diana Light.

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