7 耶穌注意到有些客人替自己挑選筵席上的首位，就用比喻對大家說： 8 「你被請去參加婚宴的時候，不要坐在首座上，恐怕有比你更受尊重的客人也在被邀請之列。 9 那個邀請你們的主人要上來對你說：『請讓座給這一位吧！』那時候，你會覺得很難為情，不得不退到末座。 10 你被請的時候，就去坐在末座，讓主人來對你說：『朋友，請上座。』這樣，你在賓客面前就有光彩。 11 因為上帝要把自高的人降為卑微，又高舉自甘卑微的人。」 12 耶穌又對宴請他的主人說：「你招待午飯或晚餐的時候，不要邀請你的朋友、弟兄、親戚，或是富有的鄰居，恐怕他們要回請你，還了你的人情。 13 你要請客，就請那些貧窮的、殘疾的、跛腳的、失明的； 14 這樣，你就有福了，因為那些人無力報答你。在義人復活的時候，上帝要親自報答你。」
7When he noticed how the guests picked the places of honor at the table, he told them this parable: 8“When someone invites you to a wedding feast, do not take the place of honor, for a person more distinguished than you may have been invited. 9If so, the host who invited both of you will come and say to you, ‘Give this man your seat.’ Then, humiliated, you will have to take the least important place. 10But when you are invited, take the lowest place, so that when your host comes, he will say to you, ‘Friend, move up to a better place.’ Then you will be honored in the presence of all your fellow guests. 11For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.” 12Then Jesus said to his host, “When you give a luncheon or dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or relatives, or your rich neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. 13But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, 14and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”
- At a banquet, Jesus commented on the behaviour of the guests, who competed with each other for “places of honour”. The scrambling for position Jesus observed reflected the heart attitude of the Pharisee’s guests. As Jesus pointed out, it was also foolish, as it exposed a person to the danger of embarrassment if asked to go down lower. Jesus also had advice for His host. Don’t use the dinners for social advantage, or to seek a favour. God’s kingdom is open to everyone, especially those that can never return the favour. God will repay us in eternity.
- How do things like customs and status get in the way of my loving others in family, church, workplace, or community?
- What does it mean today for me to throw a party for “the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind”? Who would I invite? What would it be like?
- Talk with Jesus about this idea and share the insights with a few close friends. Make plans to do it.
Parents guide the discuss Questions 3 & 4 above with children. Identify some appropriate ways to “throw a party”, or a kind act to someone in need. Decide Follow up on the activity on Ch 10.