Small Group Questions Week 53
The Gospel of Matthew
Week 53 – The Royal Invitation
Last week we covered a lot of Scripture (Matthew 21:12-46). One theme bound it all together,
however—the issue of authority. In that passage, we saw Jesus exert His authority from God when He cleansed the temple and then corrected the religious leaders when they admonished Him for not publicly admonishing the people who were publicly praising Him. We also saw Him then admonish (through the telling of two parables) the religious leaders for their ungodly leadership. As we might expect, they did not take this well and furthered their plans to get rid of Him.
This week we will study another parable that helps us to understand some realities about the kingdom
of heaven. Jesus is continuing to speak to the same religious leaders that we covered in last week’s study.
Likewise, authority is still the topic at hand. Through this parable of a wedding feast thrown by a king for his son, Jesus gets to the heart of the issue of those who have challenged Him about His authority.
• Have you ever declined an invitation to a wedding? If so, why? How did the people who invited you respond?
If you are married, did anyone decline an invitation to your wedding? What were your thoughts about the
excuse that was offered? How did it make you feel at that time?
• Have you ever crashed a wedding banquet? If so, why? Did you get discovered? Share the story.
Scripture/Storying: Matthew 22:1-14
• Jesus begins this parable by saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to...”. How would you sum
up the comparison that He makes? (What does this parable teach us about the kingdom of heaven?)
• This parable is in both the gospel of Matthew and the gospel of Luke. Take a moment to read Luke’s version (Luke 14:16-24). In Luke, there are three specific excuses for why people who were invited to the king’s banquet declined the invitation. What reasons are given? What excuses have you heard people give for not following Jesus? What have you said or done in response to hearing someone’s excuse?
• What would you say to someone today who was offended by Jesus’ harsh treatment of those who declined
the king’s invitation (v7)?
• What makes the ones who declined the invitation “not worthy” in Jesus’ eyes (v8)? What makes someone
worthy in this sense? Why do you think Jesus makes worthiness a critical issue? How do you view
yourself...worthy or not, and why?
• What is your explanation for how both the “bad and good” make it into the wedding feast (v10)?
• Why do you think the king takes issue with the man who was not wearing wedding clothes (v11-13)? ...and
why do you think his response is so extreme? What is your reaction to how he is treated, and why?
• What is your understanding of this saying that Jesus uses to conclude the parable, “For many are called, but few are chosen.” (v14)? Does it apply to you also? If so, how? If not, why not?
• What have you learned from this parable and its discussion that you will apply to your life?
Pray that we will be open to hearing when God calls and be eager in following Him to the utmost.