Christian Counseling: The Parable of the Great Feast and Us
Christ spoke of a great feast. Many were invited to this feast but no-one came. In response, the host told his servants to invite others along the wayside to come and partake of the feast he had prepared. Some were good while others were evil. The good were properly dressed in wedding garments, while the evil arrived in rags. These evil ones were cast away while the good partook in the feast. What can be gained from a Christian Counseling perspective from this parable found in Matthew 22:1-14?
This parable correlates with Sunday Service, Mass or Liturgy. The feast is the celebration of the Eucharist where Christ calls upon many to come but very few attend. While the original Jewish community rejected Christ, the Gentile population embraced him. These new guests represent the new Church. However there within the Church exists many who are spiritually distorted from the will of Christ. These souls are dressed in “rags” and while attending the feast are unworthy of its graces. Those of the Christian community who have a sincere love of Christ are the souls dressed in fine wedding garments.
This translation of the parable leads Christians to much spiritual thought. First, how ignorant it is to deny the invitation of Sunday worship which is a taste of eternal life in heaven. Second, how spiritually prepared are people for reception of the Eucharist? Do we enter into church with indifference and various spiritual maladies or do we enter into church with devout love for Christ?
Christian Counselors must emphasize to their spiritual children the importance of weekly church Service, Mass or Liturgy. This is food for the soul. Our Lord asks very little of his people. At the bare minimum he asks for one hour out of an entire week and sixty-two hours out of a year. This adds up to roughly two in a half days out of three hundred and sixty five days of the year!
The secular mind places such importance upon sporting events and concerts. It is a horrible misfortune for the materialistic mind to miss kick off or to not arrive early for the best seats at a concert. Yet Sunday worship is reduced to a mere footnote and a family custom that is more of a bother than a blessing. Even worst, some consider it merely an option. This is just not among materialists but also so-called Christians who pick and choose the days of worship that fit them best. Some even proclaim a false doctrine that they can worship God from their home and that organized worship is not part of the third commandment in keeping holy the Sabbath.
Yet despite all the reasoning and excuses, true Christians recognize the invitation to the feast as a call from Christ to attend weekly worship with a sincere and loving heart.
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Mark Moran, MA