Luke 14:15-18 NIV

15 When one of those at the table with him heard this, he said to Jesus, “Blessed is the one who will eat at the feast in the kingdom of God.”

16 Jesus replied: “A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests. 17 At the time of the banquet he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’

18 “But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said, ‘I have just bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please excuse me.’19 “Another said, ‘I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’

20 “Still another said, ‘I just got married, so I can’t come.’

There is a group who are referred to as 'many guests' who refuse to come to a banquet and give many excuses after having been given an invitation

Did Christ have a particular group in mind in the above text?

3 Answers 3


Was Christ referring to a particular group in the parable of the great banquet in Luke 14

"Yes, Jesus is referring to a particular group, in this parable, the anointed brothers of Christ referred to by Paul as the partakers of the heavenly calling.( Heb 3:1 )That heavenly calling includes service as heavenly priests of God and of Christ during Christ’s thousand-year reign. (Rev. 20:4-6)

The NT gives emphasis to this particular group,the anointed brothers of Christ referred to as the "firstfruits "to God and the Lamb, they will be resurrected to heaven,and their number is given as 144,000. They must ‘do their utmost to make their calling and choosing sure.’ (2 Peter 1:5-11)

The expressions "firstfruits"(Rev. 14:4),"little flock" (Luke 12:32 NASB), "least brothers/sisters " (Mt 25:40 NASB),"chosen ones", (Luke 18:7 NET) "saints", ( Romans 1:7 NASB) "Israel of God" (Gal.6:15-16) refer to the same group of people which are partakers of the heavenly calling, it is this group that will inherit the Kingdom of God in heaven. ( Romans 8:15-17, 1 Peter 1:3-4, Gal. 4:6-7 )

Hebrews 3:1 NASB

Jesus Our High Priest

3 Therefore, holy brothers and sisters, partakers of a heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our confession: Jesus;

Revelation 20:4-6 (NET)

4 Then[a] I saw thrones and seated on them were those who had been given authority to judge.[b] I also saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of the testimony about Jesus and because of the word of God. These[c] had not worshiped the beast or his image and had refused to receive his mark on their forehead or hand. They[d] came to life[e] and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. 5 (The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were finished.)[f] This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is the one who takes part[g] in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them,[h] but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousand years.

Revelation 14:1-5 (NASB)

The Lamb and the 144,000 on Mount Zion

14 Then I looked, and behold, the Lamb was standing on Mount Zion, and with Him 144,000 who had His name and the name of His Father written on their foreheads. 2 And I heard a voice from heaven, like the sound of many waters and like the sound of loud thunder, and the voice which I heard was like the sound of harpists playing on their harps. 3 And they *sang [a]a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders; and no one was able to learn the song except the 144,000 who had been purchased from the earth. 4 These are the ones who have not defiled themselves with women, for they are celibate. These are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever He goes. These have been purchased from mankind as first fruits to God and to the Lamb. 5 And no lie was found in their mouths; they are blameless

Jesus said the meek will inherit the earth (Matthew 5:5)

Who are those that will inherit the earth? Jesus in the parable of the sheep and the goats, (Matthew 25:34-46 NASB )said that during his parousia (presence) will gather the nations, he will separate people one from another, just as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will put the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on his left.” In this parable, Jesus makes mention of three groups of people, the "sheep", the "goats" and in verse 40 he makes mention of "least of his brothers/sisters".

As mentioned by Jesus in the gathering of the nations (Mt 25:33) he will put the sheep on his right, this implies a position of favor, this group the "meek" or "sheep-like people" will inherit the kingdom of God on the earth. Jesus said:“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth."(Mt 5:5 NET). Similarly, the Psalmist said: " But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace." Psalm 37:11 KJV) and,

Revelation 21 :3-4 NET reads:

"And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying: “Look! The residence[c] of God is among human beings. He will live among them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them. 4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death will not exist anymore—or mourning, or crying, or pain, for the former things have ceased to exist.”

Matthew 6:10 NASB

Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven.

Isaiah 11:6-9, 65:21-25. Psalm 72:16, Rev.11;18 , Acts 24:15, John 5:28-29


Let us begin by noting the following texts:

  • 2 Cor 5:14, “…we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died.”
  • 2 Cor 5:18, 19, “…God was reconciling the world to Himself in Christ …”
  • 1 Tim 2:3, 4, “For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.”
  • 1 Tim 2:6, “[Jesus Christ] gave Himself as a ransom for all people.”
  • Titus 2:11, “For the grace of God appeared bringing salvation to all people.”
  • Heb 2:9, “But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honour because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.”
  • 2 Peter 3:9, “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”
  • 1 John 2:2, “He Himself [Jesus] is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours [Christians to whom John writes] only but also for the whole world.”

Thus, God calls ALL people to repentance and salvation. Paul states it this way:

  • Rom 5:15, “But the free gift is not like the offense. For if by the one man’s [Adam’s] offense many died, much more the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abounded to the many.” [Note the same word, “many” applies to all people.]
  • Rom 5:18, “Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all people, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all people, resulting in justification of life.”

Thus, the "many" that Jesus called is everyone.

So, who are the "many guests" that are invited to marriage banquet of the Lamb? Everyone. Unfortunately, according to Jesus parable in Luke 14, a large number of people reject the invitation of Jesus and do not want to go the banquet.


Luke 14:16 Jesus replied: “A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests.

This means that some people were not invited initially.

Gill refers to this initial group of people as mainly Jews:

And bade many. This first bidding more especially respects the Jews, who are said to be "many", in reference to the promise made to Abraham, that his seed should be as the stars of the heavens, and as the sand of the sea

Benson, Matthew Henry, Barnes, Jamieson-Fausset-Brown, and Cambridge Bible all express similar sentiments.

After the initial invitations and rejections, the parable continues:

21 “The servant came back and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and ordered his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame.’

That's the second set of invitations.

22“ ‘Sir,’ the servant said, ‘what you ordered has been done, but there is still room.’

23“Then the master told his servant, ‘Go out to the roads and country lanes and compel them to come in, so that my house will be full.

That's the third set of invitations.

Matthew Poole interprets it this way:

Christ’s primary intention by this parable was certainly to foretell the rejection of the Jews for their contempt of his gospel, and the reception of the Gentiles. They were those who were first bidden, that is, called and invited by the preaching of John the Baptist, Christ himself, and the apostles, to the receiving of Christ, that so they might be prepared for the marriage supper of the Lamb, mentioned Revelation 19:9. The Gentiles, as a more rustic people, are set out under the notion of such as were in lanes, streets, and highways.

Was Christ referring to a particular group in the parable of the great banquet in Luke 14?

According to some commentators, the initial group refers to the Jews. The later groups refer to the Gentiles.

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