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Fast to Feast - Day 4

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Faith Imagined: Fast to Feast - Day 4

Faith Imagined

Alisa Hope Wagner: Christian Writer

February 24, 2010

Fast to Feast - Day 4


Matthew 22.6-9 "The rest seized his servants, mistreated them and killed them.The king was enraged. He sent his army and destroyed those murderers and burned their city. Then he said to his servants, 'The wedding banquet is ready, but those I invited did not deserve to come. Go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find. Now go out to the street corners and invite everyone you see.’ "

God says that He offers us blessings and curses (Deuteronomy 30:19). We choose blessings when we accepts Jesus' sacrifice for our sins and stay obedient to God's commands and the Holy Spirit's leading. If we don't follow God's commands and the Holy Spirit's leading, our lives become tangled with the sins of this world, and we experience a life of curses. Praise God, though, that Christians who have at least received salvation will not suffer eternal punishment for their sins. Jesus' grace covers all who have reached out to Him.

So what happens when people who have accepted Jesus into their hearts reject the commands of God and the leading of the Holy Spirit? Who gets to eat their portion of the feast? Who gets their seat at the earthly banquet that reflects the heavenly one?

Once the wedding planner finds out that His invited guest will not come to His banquet, He tells his servants, "The wedding banquet is ready, but those I invited did not deserve to come. Go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.Now go out to the street corners and invite everyone you see."

The banquet is ready to go. God has created all life to be a beautiful picture of Him. He is not going to diminish His majesty simply because the invited did not show up. So what does God do, He opens the banquet to everyone willing to come.

God's willingness to allow non-Christians to partake in His feast is also illustrated in another parable Jesus told about the Kingdom of God. Somehow weeds started growing in the wheat that God planted, and the servants wanted to know if they should pull them out. But God said, “No," he replied, "you’ll uproot the wheat if you do. Let both grow together until the harvest. Then I will tell the harvesters to sort out the weeds, tie them into bundles, and burn them, and to put the wheat in the barn.”

God has a specific plan for our earthly kingdom (wedding banquet), and every detail must be executed. If Christians are unwilling to fulfill their God-given purposes, He will have to use others to do His will. God can either use people as His tool or as His servant. The tool receives only earthly blessings, but the servant receives earthly and heavenly blessings.

This fact is seen several times in the Bible:

In 2 Chronicles 36.22 God swayed the heart of King Cyrus to allow the Israelites to return home, in order to fulfill the plan He foretold through Jeremiah.

In Nehemiah 2.6 God used King Artaxerxes to help Nehemiah rebuild Jerusalem, in order to redeem His chosen people.

In Daniel 1:46 God illustrated His glory to King Nebuchadnezzar, and the selfish king claimed God's glory.

None of these kings were godly men. They probably had worldly feast of every sin imaginable, yet God used them in order to achieve His master plan. Though these men partook in God's amazing banquet on this earth, they will not be allowed to enter into the eternal banquet. They were used as tools, not as servants.

If we as Christians are not saying yes to God's invitation to come, He must use others to fulfill His "Kingdom Come" for this earth. Our disobedience will not diminish His design.

It is crucial that we earnestly seek God about our intended and abundant role in this thing we call life. Fasting starts the journey. Jesus did not start His divine purpose (ministry) until after He had fasted.

"In the closing of chapter of the Book of Hebrews, the writer tell us, "Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith" (Heb. 13:7, NIV). As I asked before, if our Lord fasted, why would we think that we should not fast? There is no record of Jesus ever healing anyone until He returned from the forty days of fasting that launched His earthly ministry. Jesus said we would do even greater works than He had done, because He was returning to the Father. If Jesus did not begin to minister before fasting, how can we?" -- Jentezen Franklin in his book, Fasting

Fast to Feast- Day 1
Fast to Feast- Day 2
Fast to Feast- Day 3
Fast to Feast- Day 5
Fast to Feast- Day 6
Fast to Feast- Day 7



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12 Comments:

Blogger Joyeful said...

So much truth here! I love how you opened up this scripture that many read and set aside! The powerful practice of fasting is sadly missing in many Christian teachings and rarely heard in sermons, but it was a way of life for the early Christians. I love Jentezen Franklin's ministry and teachings about fasting!

It's wonderful to meet you!

9:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have inspired me and opened my eyes! Thank you!

-Crissy

9:33 PM  
Blogger Andrea said...

Beautiful reminder of living life to its fullest potential and using the resources GOD has given us to be healthy, happy, and whole.
Blessings, andrea

9:47 PM  
Blogger Alene said...

Thank you for your posts while I am fasting. I look forward to your insights. Love ya!

10:35 PM  
Blogger Debra@Common Ground said...

In this parable of the banquet, I have always prayed that I would never be like the intended guests (the Jews) since they were who Jesus had come to reveal Himself to. They did not have time to "come to the banquet". And because of their lack of belief in Jesus Christ, God extended the invitation to us Gentiles. Even as Christians, God invites us but we have too many things in our lives to be in the most important place, and that is sitting and partaking with Jesus.
Love these posts, Alisa.
blessings,
Debra

11:11 PM  
Blogger The Tooley Times said...

I love the image of the wheat. I love being able to peek in to your ever-growing relationship with our Maker. Thanks for your devotion!

5:36 AM  
Blogger Karen Lange said...

Blessings to you and your readers:)

8:52 AM  
Blogger Kitchen Belleicious said...

wonderful just wonderful. i am full of joy right now because i just found you. Your posts are true, inspirational and can and will truly help me in my growth/relationship with the Lord. He is my rock and I long to grow with him more and more. SO thank you for this ministry and I look forward to reading your posts each week. Mine is no where near yours but I do have a cookign blog with great recipes and a current giveaway if you are interested but seriously i just love your blog. Definitely signing up to be a followe! my site is http://kitchenbelleicious.blogspot.com

11:21 AM  
Blogger Debbie said...

I have always loved the story of the feast. Thanks for presenting it here in your own way, which I found very illuminating.

1:54 PM  
Blogger Bernadine said...

I'm enjoying this series. The way you present your devotion always encourages me to think and inspires me to become all that I can be in Him.

3:17 PM  
Blogger Little M said...

You always have so much to say and say it so well. How do you find the time!

I really like the new photo of you by the way :)

5:52 PM  
Blogger Angela said...

If Jesus did not begin to minister before fasting, how can we?" -

this spoke volumes to me.

4:46 PM  

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