The Wedding Garment
Lesson 22

Jesus ministry was rapidly drawing to a close and it was apparent that the Jewish nation was about to seal their rejection of Him as their king. It was necessary, however, that in rejecting Jesus, they not be ignorant of the consequences of such a choice. In warning them of what they were about do, Jesus told several parables that clearly laid before them the consequence of making such a decision. Recognizing that Jesus was pointing them out in the parables, the chief priests and Pharisees would have taken him but for the fact they feared the people.

Jesus then gave one more parable which not only revealed their approaching doom, the consequence of their rejection of Him, but also opens before Christ’s believers to the end of time some lessons of highest consequences.

1. In this parable, to what did Jesus liken the kingdom of heaven?

Matthew 22:2
Matthew 22:2

2. How did the invited guests respond to the invitation to attend?

Matthew 22:3
Matthew 22:3

3. How did the king respond to this initial refusal?

Matthew 22:4
Matthew 22:4

Note: The initial invitation to the feast had been given by Christ’s disciples, and later by the seventy that were sent out proclaiming that the kingdom of God was at hand and calling upon men to repent. (See Luke 10:1.) However, those who were bidden to come did not.

4. How did the invited guests respond to the gracious invitation?

Matthew 22:5-6
Matthew 22:5-6

Note: Following His crucifixion and resurrection, Jesus again sent out His servants, but the nation that claimed to be God’s peculiar people remained steadfast in their refusal to accept the gospel brought to them in the power of the Holy Spirit. Many treated the messengers with contempt. Others were so incensed by the offer of salvation and pardon for rejecting the Lord of glory that they turned upon the messengers bearing the message.

5. What took place at this time in Jerusalem?

Acts 8:1
Acts 8:1

6. How did the king respond to this indifference and spiteful treatment of his servants?

Matthew 22:7
Matthew 22:7

Note: The call to the feast is a king’s invitation and it confers a high honor. It is extended from one who is vested with power and authority yet it is met with scorn and his servants treated with insult and murder.

Thus the Jewish people sealed their rejection of God’s mercy. The result was foretold by Christ in the parable. The king “sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city.” The judgment pronounced upon the Jews came in the destruction of Jerusalem and the scattering of the nation.

For those who had insulted the king in the person of his messengers, more than exclusion from his presence and his table is decreed. “He sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city.” It would be difficult to imagine a deeper insult and a more dreadful punishment. Here we see illustrated the gospel invitation and its rejection by the Jewish people that resulted in the gospel going to the Gentile world.

7. Following the rejection of the second message by those originally invited, what did the king tell his servants to do?

Matthew 22:8-9
Matthew 22:8-9

8. In response to this invitation, what two groups were brought in?

Matthew 22:10
Matthew 22:10

Note: This invitation resulted in gathering in a mixed group. Some of those who thought to attend the feast really had no greater regard for the one extending the invitation than did the first group who refused to come, but they came hoping to benefit themselves. They came to share in the provisions of the feast, but with no real desire to honor the king.

9. As the king came in to view the guests, what did he particularly notice?

Matthew 22:11
Matthew 22:11

Note: It is when the king came in to view the guests that the real character of each was revealed. By wearing the garment received from the king as gift, and obtained at great expense, the guests showed their respect for the giver of the feast. In contrast, those disdaining to wear the garment provided at such great expense, choosing rather to wear his common citizen’s dress, revealed that they had refused to make the preparation required by the king.

The king’s examination of the guests at the feast represents the judgment. The guests in attendance represent those who profess to serve God, whose names are written in the book of life. However, not all who profess to be Christians are true disciples. Before the final rewards are given, it must be determined who are fitted to share in the inheritance of the righteous.

10. What is given to the church to wear?

Revelation 19:7-8
Revelation 19:7-8

11. What is the fine linen?

Revelation 19:8
Revelation 19:8

Note: The wedding garment is the robe of Christ’s own righteousness that He offers to impart to all who receive Him as their personal Saviour.

12. Speaking to the church of Laodicea, what garment does Christ counsel them to obtain from Him?

Revelation 3:18
Revelation 3:18

Note: Christ in His humanity wrought out a perfect character, and this character He offers to impart to us.

13. What is our righteousness likened to?

Isaiah 64:6
Isaiah 64:6

Note: Everything we of ourselves can do is defiled by sin.

14. What is the Bible definition of sin?

1 John 3:4
1 John 3:4

15. For what purpose was Christ manifested?

1 John 3:5
1 John 3:5

16. When announcing Christ’s birth, for what reason did the angel say He had come?

Matthew 1:21
Matthew 1:21

Note: Christ did not come to save us merely from the consequence of our sins, but from sin itself. In the divine plan, Christ came to restore the moral image of God in man.

17. Of what significance was Christ’s sinless life?

1 Peter 2:21-22
1 Peter 2:21-22

18. If we are truly abiding in Christ, what effect will it have on our lives?

1 John 3:6
1 John 3:6

19. What is the gospel able to do for our thinking?

2 Corinthians 10:3–5
2 Corinthians 10:3–5

Note: “By His perfect obedience, Christ made it possible for every human being to obey God’s commandments. When we submit ourselves to Christ, the heart is united with His heart, the will is merged in His will, the mind becomes one with His mind, the thoughts are brought into captivity to Him; we live His life. This is what it means to be clothed with the garment of His righteousness.” Christ’s Object Lessons, 312

20. When He comes, what will Christ say to those who profess a relationship with Him, but who have failed to render obedience?

Matthew 7:21–23
Matthew 7:21–23

Note: Though pleasant to the natural heart, it is a delusion to believe that God will accept our sincerity no matter what may be the faith, no matter how imperfect the life. God requires of His creatures perfect obedience.

21. To whom will the gates of the heavenly city open?

Revelation 22:14
Revelation 22:14

Note: The Word of God leaves the responsibility of our joy or our ruin at our own door; everything depends upon our obedience or disobedience.

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