The Man on the Middle Cross Said I Could Come

Read through the Bible in 2 Years: Matthew 22

“Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding feast is ready, but those invited were not worthy. Go therefore to the main roads and invite to the wedding feast as many as you find.’ And those servants went out into the roads and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good. So the wedding hall was filled with guests.

“But when the king came in to look at the guests, he saw there a man who had no wedding garment. And he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless.

Then the king said to the attendants, ‘Bind him hand and foot and cast him into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'”

Matthew 22:8-13 ESV

I remember one time shortly after moving to the South when I went to a moms-night-out for homeschooling moms. The social was in the evening, and it was being hosted in a fellow homeschooling mom’s home. I showed up in what I’d been wearing all day – what I wore every day – a Christian t-shirt and jeans. My curly hair was unbrushed and my face was make-up free. I walked into that room full of strangers and immediately wanted to turn around and walk back to the car.

Apparently I’d missed the memo: “Before you come, make sure you brush your hair, and put on some makeup and stylish mom-wear.”

This is not at all what Jesus was referring to in this parable of the wedding feast. Jesus doesn’t care about your makeup. He doesn’t care if you’ve brushed your hair or put on that cute new outfit. He doesn’t care how much money is in your bank account, or how many square feet are in your home, or which side of the train tracks you live on. He doesn’t care how tall you are or what color your skin is. He doesn’t care about your ACT score or what kind of grades you got in high school. In fact, He doesn’t care whether you’re from the North or the South, the East or the West.

The banqueting table of the Lord is long and wide. He has invited all kinds of people – men and women, rich and poor, and every shade of skin, eye, and hair color – to His wedding feast.

Like Jesus’s parable of the net (Matthew 13:47-50), every kind of fish will be gathered – trout and salmon and tuna and brim and red snapper – at the end of the age. But, ultimately, there are only two kinds of fish: good fish and bad fish.

When you breathe your last breath, what’s going to matter is this: Are you wearing a wedding garment?

There will only be two choices: Yes or No. There’s no A, B, C and D on this test. You either have a wedding garment or you don’t.

And there’s only one way to get those wedding garments. They must be given to you by the groom, the Messiah, Jesus Christ, the man on the middle cross.

So, I’ve got to ask you: Has Jesus given you the wedding garments? Or are you trying to get in with your own clothes, not realizing they are only filthy rags?

Friends, God knows your heart. No amount of makeup or hair styling or clothing or good deeds can cover up your need for a Savior.

“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”

And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.”

Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”

And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment. The one who conquers will have this heritage, and I will be his God and he will be my son. But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.””

Revelation 21:1-8 ESV

“Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”

1 Corinthians 6:9-11 ESV

Have you been given the groom’s pure white wedding clothes?

Have your sins been washed away by blood of the Lamb?

May today be the day of salvation, and may we be faithful heralds of the good news of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.

Heavenly Father, I come humbly before Your throne of grace and ask You to send out Your Word to draw many into Your kingdom, to clothe them in the pure white garments of the Lamb without blemish. Fill us with Your Holy Spirit and make us hate our sin like You do. Be our God and make us Your people. Make us new and wash us clean in the spring of living water. Thank You for Your grace. In the name of Jesus Christ we pray, Amen.

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