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The Parables #65

Invitation to a Royal Wedding, Pt2.

Scripture: Matthew 22:1-14

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In the light of the defiant and wicked attitude of the men to whom He was speaking, the Saviour reminds them of the nature of the Person and the message they were defying.

II. THE SAVIOUR SETS FORTH CLEARLY THE PERSON WITH WHOM THEY WERE DEALING

1. He made clear to them that they were defying and insulting a great King. “The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,” Matthew 22:2. Men tend to forget Who God is! He is the Creator of all things. He upholds all things. He is the Judge of all the earth.
“And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?” Daniel 4:35.
He it is that speaks to you in the gospel, Who “now commandeth all men every where to repent,” Acts 17:30.

The gospel comes to you as a command from God to REPENT!

III. HE SETS FORTH THE GLORIOUS CHARACTER OF THE GOSPEL

“The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,” verse 2.

An invitation to a wedding is usually counted an important thing. It indicates your standing in the eyes of the person inviting you. A royal wedding invitation is even more treasured! It is considered a great favour and honour indeed.

1. That is what the gospel is! What an honour to receive an invitation from God!

The Parables #64

Invitation to a Royal Wedding, Pt1.

Scripture: Matthew 22:1-14

Stream or download The Parables #64


We will read the parable right through as part of our first study for it is important that we take note of exactly what the Saviour says before we attempt to expound it.

I. NOTE TO WHOM HE IS SPEAKING.

1. Jewish leaders. “And Jesus answered and spake unto them,” Matthew 22:1. This referred to “the chief priests and Pharisees,” 21:45.

2. Angry and violent Jewish leaders. “ . . . they sought to lay hands on him, 21:46.
Yet despite this, He spoke again to them. How patient is the Lord!

From Prison Cell to Pharaoh’s Court – the story of Joseph

Scripture: Genesis 45:8. “So now it was not you that sent me hither, but God: and he hath made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house, and a ruler throughout all the land of Egypt.”

Preached in Bethel Free Presbyterian Church, Sunday September 2nd, 2018.

Stream or download From Prison Cell to Pharaoh’s Court – the story of Joseph


II. GOD’S UPWARD PATH TO THE THRONE LED DOWNWARD.

1. Before Joseph could occupy the throne he must feel the chains of the prison.  Psalm 105:17-21. Joseph was led down into Egypt where he went down into slavery and then down again into a cell. It was when he was made to feel his own emptiness and helplessness that God’s time for him was come. The prodigal son was ready for home only after he realised and acknowledged his own foolishness. The sinner must be brought down to an end of himself.

2. It was to save those who know, feel and brokenly acknowledge themselves to be sinners, that Christ came. “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost,” Luke 19:10.  Joseph knew himself to be lost to all human help. Had not even the butler whom he had helped forgotten him? Genesis 40:23. It was then that God began to work.
May God cause you to feel your lost condition today. There is hope only for the sinner who knows and confesses himself to be lost. “ A broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise”, Psalm 51:17.

III. GOD’S PURPOSE IN GRACE CANNOT BE HINDERED OR FRUSTRATED.

1. What a host of difficulties lay between Joseph and the throne of Egypt! Yet each difficulty was, in fact, a stepping stone to the throne.
Had you and I been told, when Joseph was but a lad, that God’s purpose was to place him upon the throne of Egypt, what consternation we would have experienced when he was set upon by his brothers and sold as a slave to the Ishmeelites.
Again we would have despaired for the divine purpose when we saw him accused falsely by Potiphar’s wife.
What  dismay at the reversal our hopes would have received, when we saw how the butler forgot Joseph.
Yet each of these apparent set-backs was, in fact, an advance in God’s plan.

We preach a God who “worketh all things after the counsel of his own will”, “according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began”,  Ephesians 1:11, II Timothy 1:9. You may despair of ever seeing a way out of your difficulties but there is a way through Christ. He is able to lift you no matter how low you have fallen and He will lift you as high as His own throne.

From Prison Cell to Pharaoh’s Court – the story of Joseph Pt1

Scripture: Genesis 45:8 “So now it was not you that sent me hither, but God: and he hath made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house, and a ruler throughout all the land of Egypt.”

Preached in Bethel Free Presbyterian Church, September 2nd, 2018.

Stream or download From Prison Cell to Pharaoh’s Court – the story of Joseph


God’s purpose in Joseph’s life involved him going to jail and that for quite some time. Many have lived to bless the days of affliction and distress through which God caused them to go. They discovered, like Manasseh, (II Chronicles 33:12) that affliction often causes us to think upon our ways and to consider the Lord. So it was with the Prodigal son in Luke 15:14-17. The jails of Ulster have been places where the purpose of God has been wrought out in mercy in the lives of those who otherwise would never have been reached with the gospel. Joseph was able to say to his brothers, whose wickedness had been the cause of him being taken as a slave to Egypt in the first place,  — Genesis 50:20.
We can learn some very important gospel lessons from the experience of Joseph recorded in Genesis.

I. GOD’S PURPOSE WAS TO PLACE JOSEPH UPON THE THRONE.
“God . . . hath made me . . . . a ruler throughout all the land of Egypt”, Genesis 45:8.

1. In this we have a picture of the purpose of God in the gospel. It is to take poor sinners and place them upon a throne. A far greater throne than that of Egypt. I Samuel 2:8.
Christ  asks that His Father bring them to His throne that they may see and share in His glory, John 17:24.  All of God’s elect will see Him in all His majesty.  All who are saved and washed in the blood of the Lamb are made unto our God “kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth”, Revelation 5:10. We shall literally reign with Him when the Saviour returns to make the kingdoms of this world His.

2. But it is the privilege of the child of God to live now as a king where once he was a poor slave.  Romans 6:14. As Joseph ruled where he once had been a poor miserable slave, so the Christian is enabled by God’s grace to rule where once he was a slave to sin and uncleanness.  See Joseph sitting upon the throne and imagine all those who had authority and dominion over him in past years now bowing before him in submission. See his brothers coming down and bowing before him, they who had cast him into a pit and sold him into slavery. So it is with the Christian. Upon receiving Christ, he becomes a new creature, “old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new”, II Corinthians 5:17. He arises out of his prison cell of sin to “walk in newness of life”, Romans 6:4.