The king made a wedding feast for his son; the food list is headed by "oxen," Greek "ταῦροί," which I believe is the plural form. Thus, more than one ox? (there were other fattened livestock, but I don't know how to figure them in.)

Checking what resources I can find, it looks like an ox available around the time weighs about 1000 pounds, and gives 430 pounds of meat. A generous MODERN wedding entree portion is 1/2 pound, so ~860 portions per ox; minimum of two oxen = 1720 guests.

That seems to me to be a HUGE event; epic, even. Is that implicit in the (verse 4) food description?

  • 2
    By law, some of the 430 pounds wouldn't have been eaten (fats and part of the thigh are forbidden, and arm, cheeks and stomach go to the priest; and even more if it were a sacrificial animal), but it still looks like a lot of food if you're calculating right
    – b a
    Nov 11, 2019 at 19:16
  • b a, would a chart showing kosher beef cuts (approved by the Atlanta Kosher Commission), be a reliable source for which cuts might have been served at such a feast?
    – Papa Pat
    Nov 12, 2019 at 14:01
  • I don't think so. For instance, the arms, cheek and stomach are considered "kosher" whereas in ancient Jewish law they were the property of the priest (if I'm not mistaken, nowadays this is mostly taken care of by monetary arrangements)
    – b a
    Nov 15, 2019 at 12:27

2 Answers 2


I concur with the alert observation and analysis of the original question that this would indicate that they expected a lot of guests.


The signs Jesus did every day were bread from heaven, but the cross was like a wedding feast, so great was this work of God.

Jesus picked up a cross everyday when He faced the Pharisees and was saved by God, everytime His words were supported by Scripture, His works were supported by healing and feeding, resulting in increasing of the faith of His followers. This is how He ate food that the world had no idea about, and how He showed His followers examples of how they could also receive bread from heaven, to feed yet more people, increasing their faith, to turn them to follow God. He invited the whole of Israel to the wedding feast, the Cross, the greatest work of God manifested in His life, because when He was raised up, He would draw the whole world to Himself, but when Israel refused the food, the whole world became eligible to become blessings, like Jesus. BUT THE WEDDING GUESTS HAD TO UNDERSTAND THAT THE WORKS WERE MEANT TO MOTIVATE THEM TO PICK UP THEIR OWN CROSSES TOO, THAT THAT WAS THE REAL PURPOSE OF THE GREAT WORKS PREVIOUSLY DONE, INDICATED BY COMING PREPARED, WEARING WEDDING GARMENTS, BEING READY TO OBEY, USING THE GIFTS LIKE CAPITAL TO GROW THEIR BUSINESS, TALENTS TO INCREASE PROFITS! They should have built up their faith. Should have allowed the revelation to take root and let it prepare them to pick up their own cross, to feed others spiritual food, living waters, through the Holy Spirit, contribute to the festivities of the Wedding, when God did great works in saving.

Matthew 22:11“But when the king came in to look over the dinner guests, he saw a man there who was not dressed in wedding clothes, 12and he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without wedding clothes?’ And the man was speechless. 13“Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, and throw him into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ 14“For many are called, but few are chosen.”


Matthew 25:1“Then the kingdom of heaven will be comparable to ten virgins, who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. 2“Five of them were foolish, and five were prudent. 3“For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them, 4but the prudent took oil in flasks along with their lamps. 5“Now while the bridegroom was delaying, they all got drowsy and began to sleep. 6“But at midnight there was a shout, ‘Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ 7“Then all those virgins rose and trimmed their lamps. 8“The foolish said to the prudent, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ 9“But the prudent answered, ‘No, there will not be enough for us and you too; go instead to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.’ 10“And while they were going away to make the purchase, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast; and the door was shut. 11“Later the other virgins also came, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open up for us.’ 12“But he answered, ‘Truly I say to you, I do not know you.’ 13“Be on the alert then, for you do not know the day nor the hour.


14“For it is just like a man about to go on a journey, who called his own slaves and entrusted his possessions to them. 15“To one he gave five talents, to another, two, and to another, one, each according to his own ability; and he went on his journey. 16“Immediately the one who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and gained five more talents. 17“In the same manner the one who had received the two talents gained two more. 18“But he who received the one talent went away, and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.

19“Now after a long time the master of those slaves came and settled accounts with them. 20“The one who had received the five talents came up and brought five more talents, saying, ‘Master, you entrusted five talents to me. See, I have gained five more talents.’ 21“His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’

22“Also the one who had received the two talents came up and said, ‘Master, you entrusted two talents to me. See, I have gained two more talents.’ 23“His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’

24“And the one also who had received the one talent came up and said, ‘Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow and gathering where you scattered no seed. 25‘And I was afraid, and went away and hid your talent in the ground. See, you have what is yours.’

26“But his master answered and said to him, ‘You wicked, lazy slave, you knew that I reap where I did not sow and gather where I scattered no seed. 27‘Then you ought to have put my money in the bank, and on my arrival I would have received my money back with interest. 28‘Therefore take away the talent from him, and give it to the one who has the ten talents.’

29“For to everyone who has, more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but from the one who does not have, even what he does have shall be taken away. 30“Throw out the worthless slave into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth

All Scripture from the NASB.

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