The Parable of the Wedding Feast
7 Now he told a parable to those who were invited, when he noticed how they chose the places of honor, saying to them, 8 “When you are invited by someone to a wedding feast, do not sit down in a place of honor, lest someone more distinguished than you be invited by him, 9 and he who invited you both will come and say to you, ‘Give your place to this person,’ and then you will begin with shame to take the lowest place. 10 But when you are invited, go and sit in the lowest place, so that when your host comes he may say to you, ‘Friend, move up higher.’ Then you will be honored in the presence of all who sit at table with you.11 For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”
12 He said also to the man who had invited him, “When you give a dinner or a banquet, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, lest they also invite you in return and you be repaid. 13 But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, 14 and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.”
Observations and Reflections
The parable of the wedding feast is positioned in Luke’s gospel just after Luke seems to be demonstrating that Israel is now abandoned by God because of their treatment of their own savior, Jesus. It’s also followed by another parable that has illustrates this point (the great banquet). It is not by accident that these teachings are all blocked together right before Jesus enters Jerusalem. Luke wants the reader to know that God’s chosen people were now apostate and that a new people will be taking their place; those who follow Jesus, Immanuel.
The parables themselves are reflecting in the idea that humility is the currency in the kingdom of God, not wealth or status. God’s kingdom will not be one where the religious leaders can assume a privileged position. If they wish to be exalted, they must first humble themselves. Likewise, as Christians we should always be looking to out-do one another in love and honor as Paul tells the Romans.
Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. (Romans 12:10)
Humility is something that marks the life of one who follows after Christ. As Christians we are called to possess Christ-like qualities and humility is an important aspect of the Christian life. The reason why is because Jesus sets the example of how we ought to act and he exemplified humility throughout the course of His ministry.
His main act of showing a humble attitude was when He went to the cross and suffered a great deal in order to pay the penalty for our sin. He put us first and himself in the line of extreme pain, humiliation and death in order to show us His love for us. Putting the lives of the entire world before Himself portrayed what a life of humility looks like.
To be humble means to put ones needs before yours. It also means to not boast in what you have done but pointing the glory back to what Jesus has been doing in and through you. It is removing the attention of yourself and your own needs and thinking about the needs of others.