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TWENTY-FIRST SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST  

This is the day the LORD hath made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.    

Deuteronomy 34:1-12 Philippians 4:1-9 Matthew 22:1-10 Psalm 135:1-14       A positive response to the call of God leads to a productive life and the LORD'S choicest rewards. Moses was blessed with a view of both the land and God's plan for the people Moses had led throught the widerness. Jesus' story identified persons who did not respond positively to the call of God and were excluded from the kingdom.       Jesus' parable of the wedding banquet is similar to the parable of the great banquet in Luke 14. There are significant differences.  Luke's parable is spoken at the house of a prominent Pharisee and puts more emphasis on individual excuses offered for refusing the invitation and does not emphasize judgment or reason for that judgment, as the parable in Matthew which gives further explanation of judgment.       In Matthew the parable is spoken by our LORD on Tuesday of Holy Week, a day of intense teaching and confrontation, and of straight talk about unbelief. Jesus, in the face of open hostility, explains that hostility, its histroy and its tragic results. This parable is also a part of his extended response to Matthew 21:23, where His authority is questioned. Again we hear the Gospel invitation, "Grace extended, rejected, and sustained." Jesus' story calls us away from those things in our lives we fear, love , and trust more than Him. Jesus reminds us that there is a banquet awaiting us if we trust the invitation and respond in joy.  

Dear Savior, draw reluctant hearts; To You let sinners fly And take the bliss Your love imparts, Revive, and never die.  Amen      

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