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Time to Send Out Invitations

It’s invitation time!

Luke 14:15-24, Jesus gives us the parable of the “great” supper, which a certain man (The Heavenly Father) had prepared to feed many. It was great enough to be able to feed all those he had invited, and then some (all of humanity). They could get their fill of anything they wanted.

When the invited guests declined to come to this fantastic supper, the master of the house (the Lord Jesus) got the servants (believers) to go out and bring others to the supper. Not to get into any theological discussion of who the first invited guests were, but needless to say they knew who was giving the great supper, and they knew they should have been there to receive the promised blessings of being in His presence.

At the first, the servants were to bring, or invite in, those who were not able to afford to be there – those with physical and financial handicaps (those who would like to go to that great supper but saw no way to go because they thought they were unworthy to be invited in the condition they were presently in).

When this group came, there was still seating available, so the servants were instructed to compel others to come, those they found on the highways (every road or walk of life that society traveled on, irregardless of their social standing) and even in the hedges (those who were homeless and outcasts, those rejected by society). These were those who were unaware that there was a supper being prepared to which they would be invited.


Opportunities to engage the kingdom of God in other people’s lives

Now is the time to arise and let God’s glory be revealed, wherever you are. Light needs to shine in these dark hours. Let what you say and do reveal to others how God let you eat at the great supper, and how He has worked in your life to bring not only salvation and deliverance, but the abundant life. In other words, “give a testimony!” Reveal the glory of God by telling of the ways He has blessed your surrender to Him. By your testimony you can invite others to join the feast of God's goodness.

I Peter 3:15, “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.”

Each testimony which you have of how you have trusted the Lord and He answered abundantly is an invitation that you can give to someone in need. It may be a testimony about deliverance, or salvation, or meeting financial needs, or healing, or peace that was needed, or wisdom that was needed. Whatever need that you have let the Lord move in your life and bless you by meeting is an invitation you can give out.

People like to hear a testimony, a personal experience, especially about a great meal. Maybe you can brag on eating at the “great” supper. You could brag about be about the main dish (truth), or the side dishes (wealth), or even about the desserts (love). Or maybe you have a whole supper testimony invitation that you can give out.

The more testimonies you have are more opportunities you have to give out an invitation to come to the “great” supper of Jesus Christ. It is a great supper because it carries all the food any human will ever need for any situation faced. The gospel, the good news, is not just about salvation, It’s about all that goes with it. It’s not just the steak, but the side dishes and desserts that are included.

Hebrews 4:14-16, “seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

The throne of heaven has a supply room attached that has every answer for every need anyone will ever have, because God saw your need before you even knew you had it and provided the answer ahead of time.

The servants gave out the invitations

We are the body of Christ here on Earth. Jesus Christ, the head of the Church, is seated at the right hand of the Father (positionally).We are His hands and feet and mouth (literally) that proclaim and evidence the glory of God here on Earth.

Just as in the feeding of the 5,000 and then the 4,000, it was the disciples who gave out the fish and loaves to the hungry people. Jesus was the supper source, the food source (John 6:35, 47-51). Jesus provided the multiplied food, but it was the disciples (sheep) who gave out what they received from Jesus (the Shepherd).

The invitation to the great supper was given for the servants (believers) to invite them to “Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the man who trusts in Him!(Psalm 34:8). Sheep, who know the “good” Shepherd personally, are to bring in the lost sheep in, because they have a personal testimony of the goodness of their Shepherd.

Believer’s testimonies of their trust in the Shepherd are what draws lost and hungry sheep to the Shepherd. In John 10:10b, as the “good” shepherd, Jesus said “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” It is the sheep that give the testimony, or witness, which other sheep will listen to.

Too long the church leadership structure has felt that they were the only ones qualified to share the Gospel. But we are the ones, the sheep, who have experienced the blessings, the eating at the “great” supper provided by the Shepherd.

Since we have eaten at the great supper ourselves we all have the duty to let our fellow human beings know what they can enjoy if they but trust in the Lord. It is not to be just shared by the church structure. We are the body of Christ. We are the Temple. We carry with us the Holy Spirit and the ability to tell about and show the glory of God anywhere the Holy Spirit leads.


Your mission field is greater than your physical church’s ability to reach that field

Because of church structure, people have for years mistakenly believed that revealing the kingdom of God was limited to the church facility, or by just church personnel or programs.

All believers are priests and kings (Revelation 1:6), as well as ambassadors for Christ (II Corinthians 5:20). Revealing the kingdom of God is not limited to the five-fold ministry offices. Any believer can testify as to God’s goodness, just as any believer can have signs that follow their belief (Mark 16:17&18).

Look at Acts 2:46, where it states that they met daily in the temple, but also that they were “breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God…” Home churches were very successful because of the personal testimonies, not because of the place they were in.

Because we have the Kingdom of God within us (through the indwelling Word of God and the Holy Spirit), we can provide a supper anywhere people are. Luke 17:20 Jesus said, “The kingdom of God does not come with observation (at a certain program), nor will they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there” (at a certain physical place) For indeed the kingdom of God is within you.”

If you don’t have a testimony, then you really need to search your heart as to whether you have trusted Jesus as your Lord and Savior. Testimonies come from times of trials when you have trusted the Lord and how He has answered your faith in Him. Again, sheep testify about the Shepherd.

It can be done by you while on the job, at a social event, a sporting event, in line at the grocery store – basically anywhere people are gathered you can reveal the kingdom of God.

There is always someone who needs to hear some good news, and not just about salvation. They may need to hear a word of encouragement, discernment, guidance, or receive an act of kindness, or of love. The key to taking advantage of these situations is the Holy Spirit.

Allow the Holy Spirit to open your eyes so that you can see times of opportunity as well as ways the devil will try to hinder you.


Just give it out

Let the river of life that is within you flow out freely (John 7:38&39). The Holy Spirit will help you do this when you yield to Him. The gifts of the Holy Spirit (I Corinthians 12:4-11) and the fruit of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22&23) flow through people, not buildings or programs.

Beware!

The devil will be trying to stifle your testimony with demonic thoughts (usually by intimidation), demonic controlled people (through criticism), and demonic initiated circumstances (physical hindrances). He doesn’t want you inviting people to the “great” supper found in Jesus Christ. There may even be some that you invite that decline to come. But don't stop inviting others.

Remember, the Kingdom of God is within you. So you can declare the evidence of its existence by what you say and do. People love to hear stories, and telling a story about how God has moved in your life can become a compelling testimony. Personal experiences carry far more weight than do sermons.


Give the full invitation

The whole world needs to know the whole “Good News.” The Father has made the whole supper available, not just part of it. Jesus came to give us life, and that more abundantly, means that salvation may be the start, but it goes much “further” than that. So let people know the “further part.”

While salvation is the start of the blessing of Jesus Christ’s ministry, abundant life is a product of the total gospel. And harmony, or oneness with the Father, is the essence of it, for where the Father is the abundant glory of God is there also.

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