The invitation

Beechcraft

Imagine if Bill Gates walked into a public square one day and said, “Anyone who wants to come to my house, follow me.”

Now imagine that a homeless man is passing by with all his worldly possessions in a shopping cart.

He immediately lets go of the shopping cart—which rolls a bit further—and rushes towards Bill Gates.

Bill Gates doesn’t look upset or horrified.  Instead, he just nods and begins walking back to his jet with the homeless man, and all the others who want to see Bill Gates’ home, following him.  Can you imagine that happening?

But this is nothing compared to what Jesus did!  The Son of God, with infinite majesty, power, and resources, invites the homeless, the working class, and the wealthy, to come to Him for salvation, and even the rabble of His day!

I don’t think you or I should hold your breath for Bill Gates to fly his jet to our city and invite us to come to his island for dinner.

But in the middle of a great big feast, Jesus really, actually stands up and makes an invitation for anyone who wants to be fulfilled to come to Him.  He invites you and I, all of us–the ‘winners’ and the ‘losers’, the wardens and the prisoners, the stockbrokers and the bankrupt–to His house!

Wow!

On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.” By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified. (John 7:37-39, NIV)

“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. And you know the way to where I am going.”

“No, we don’t know, Lord,” Thomas said. “We have no idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?”

Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me. If you had really known me, you would know who my Father is. From now on, you do know him and have seen him!” (John 14:1-7, NLT)

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The Three Excuses: Reflection

“Then the master told his servant, ‘Go to the roads and paths!  Urge the people to come to my house.  I want it to be full.  I can guarantee that none of those invited earlier will taste any food at my banquet.’ ” (Luke 12:23-24)

The scary reality: We are, each one of us, replaceable in God’s kingdom.  Although there is no other person just like us, and God desires all to come to Him, He will not keep a seat for us if we are not willing to answer His call.

And we will miss out on His banquet.  We will miss out on the Kingdom of God.

“It is done.  I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End.  To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life.  He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son.  But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.” (Revelation 21:6b-8, NIV)

Photo by I Woz Ere, profile on http://www.flickr.com/people/35558439@N08/

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