November 15, 2018

Let’s Just Preach Christ

By Grant Caldwell

During His personal ministry, Christ often taught in parables. He would use an illustration of which everyone was aware from his every day life, and would teach a spiritual lesson from it. The Lord explained this in Matthew 13, when He said that He taught in parables because some wanted to know and yet others had closed their eyes and stopped their ears so that they could not, or at least would not, understand the truth. Then, He said, "But blessed are your eyes for they see: and your ears for they hear" (Mt. 13:16). There are lessons that Christ would have men know, but only if they are willing to learn.

Primary Application

Our Object is to observe just one of Christ's parables -- the one recorded in Matthew 22. Christ here compares the kingdom of heaven to a certain king, which made a marriage for His son." He sent His servants to call those that were invited to come, but they would not. He sent other servants but still they would not come, and actually murdered the servants. The king was sorely displeased and sent His army to destroy the ones invited. Then, the king sent servants to the highways and invited all to come. "And the wedding was furnished with guests" (vs. 10).

This parable has reference to the Jews' rejection of Christ and the Gentiles being given the invitation to come unto the Lord. However, there is a secondary aspect of the parable that we would like to notice.

Secondary Lessons

The Lord observed four distinct classifications here that we will notice by order of importance. The first is the King. This is God the Father who loved man and devised a plan whereby man might enjoy a feast of spiritual blessings. This love was manifested and the plan executed in the sending of Christ (John 3:16). The second, naturally then, is the King's son, for whom the feast was prepared. The Father loved Him and set Him in authority over the church (Mt. 28:18; Eph. 1:22). The time of the feast came (vs. 3) and the third classification appears. This group may be considered in two divisions: First--"Them that were bidden" (vs. 3). Notice, the Jews were previously bidden but rejected when the time to accept Christ came (John 1:11). Secondly -- "as many as they found" (vs. 10). These Gentiles accepted and came to the Lord's feast (Rom. 1:16).

Notice now the fourth classification and the one least in importance. "And He sent forth His servants" (vs. 3). This is parallel to the one who preaches the gospel. Someone may object and say, "This is only the apostles." However, the chief role of the apostles was to "preach Jesus Christ and Him crucified" (I Cot. 2:2). And men like Timothy, Titus, Philip, etc., were constantly bidding guests to come and partake of the Lord's feast. It is to this group  preacher -- we now turn our attention.

Preachers

Often, we see men standing in the pulpit proclaiming the gospel and they appear to "think more highly of themselves than they ought to think." Those of us who proclaim the glad tidings of Christ -- whether we intend to or not -- often lose our audience entirely by an attitude that says, "I'm certainly doing a 'bang-up' job." We do not seem to realize that we are only mere servants that have been sent forth to invite all to the Feast.

This not only applies to the man in the pulpit. Before anyone endeavors to convert someone else, he should look at his own weaknesses and his own nature (Mt. 7:3-5) and understand that he is only conveying God's message and inviting people to God's feast. Many young preachers try to mimic the older and better men, and 1 would not say they cannot help us with their wisdom. But if there is any mimicking to be done, it should come as a result of our spending more time looking at the humble nature of Christ and bowing down at His precious feet. Paul asked the Corinthians, "Who then is Paul and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed even, as the Lord gave to every man? I planted, Apollos watered; but GOD GAVE THE INCREASE" (I Cor. 3:5-7). Preachers are constantly dealing with the spiritual faults of others. This is the very nature of their labors. This should, however, always be done in the realization of one's own short comings. (Gal. 6:1)

Let us remember that, whether privately, from the pulpit or over the back fence, our sole purpose is to... PREACH CHRIST AND HIM CRUCIFIED (I Cor. 1:23). The gospel is God's power to save (Rom. 1:16). We are bidding people to the Lord's feast and not our own. If this we will do, souls will be saved and we will be found pleasing in the sight of the master. (I Tim. 4:16)

TRUTH MAGAZINE XIV; 41, pp. 13-14
August 27, 1970

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