Dear Friends Todays liturgy represents salvation in terms if a royal banquet. The Lord, in his unlimited generosity, invites us to attend his heavenly feast. Prophet Isaiah in our first reading of today described it vividly when he said: “on this mountain, The Lord of hosts will prepare for all people a banquet of fine wines, of food rich and juicy… He will remove the mourning veil covering all peoples… He will destroy death for ever. The Lord will wipe away the tears from every check…” From the earliest of days, the prophets spoke of heaven in terms of things of ordinary life. God lead us to this holy mountain. The Responsorial Psalm expresses this reality in a moving picture.
The Lord is my Shepherd …Near restful waters he leads me…He guides me along the right path…if I should walk in the valley of darkness no evil would I fear? You are there with your staff; with these you give me comfort… Surely goodness and kindness shall follow me all he days of my life. In the Lord’s own house shall I dwell forever and forever (Ps. 23: 1-6). In our Gospel of today, Jesus was very worried that we wouldn’t come, that we would lose our way and get distracted by the fading, ephemeral and mundane realities of this world and not honour his invitation. So he told the priests and elders a couple of parables. In the first parable the king calls those invited to the banquet but they didn’t come and even went ahead to attack the king’s messengers.
This parable is aimed at Gods chosen people Israel, as they turn their back on God by not accepting his invitation. Then God in his own benevolence and kindness offers the invitation to everyone, to us the gentiles and to all of human race, and with this invitation we all are now able to come to Gods heavenly banquet and participate in it, a place where there is so much joy, peace and happiness. The second parable is about the guest that came to the feast without the wedding garment. All the guests came to the banquet to eat, drink and enjoy themselves, but only one man isn’t wearing a wedding garment and just because of his clothes he was thrown out.
The man really wanted to be at banquet, he wanted to stay but unfortunately he was thrown out because he wasn’t warring the right clothes which is suppose to make him eligible for the banquet. The clothes talked about here represent our life, since we accepted the gift of grace. Our clothes and our life are washed white at baptism, kept clean by the life we lead and the sacraments, particularly reconciliation and the Eucharist. Friends, one way or the other we all do wrong, we all sin, we all ruin the clothes we will wear to the banquet. God knows that, which is why he never stops forgiving and never stops bequeathing on us his grace and mercy.
By accepting his grace we become responsible for our lives and must try to live lives worthy of that grace, so to be proud and grateful for the clothes God has given to us. Clothes that through Grace, are so easy to clean, so easy to repair and gives us admission into the banquet of our heavenly Father. Dear friends as we see in the readings of today God’s invitation is made to all without exception; it is our personal duty to be duly prepared.
He has invited us for the banquet we need to cooperate with Him and honour His invitation by living virtuous, holy, unassuming and extolling lifestyles, so as to be partakers of his banquet and relish and savor from all that it has to offer. We really do not know neither the time nor the hour when He will come, we need to be prepared. This is why St. Paul reminds us, “You are God’s chosen race, his saints; he loves you and you should be clothed in sincere compassion, in kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with one another whenever there is an occasion to do so. Over all these clothes, to keep them together, put on love” (Col 3:12-15).