Luke 14:12-14 Then said he also to him that bade him, When thou makest a dinner or a supper, call not thy friends, nor thy brethren, neither thy kinsmen, nor thy rich neighbours; lest they also bid thee again, and a recompence be made thee.13 But when thou makest a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind:14 And thou shalt be blessed; for they cannot recompense thee: for thou shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the just.
Jesus was invited to a feast at a religious leader’s home. He observed how many of the other guests wanted to sit in the seats of honor at the banquet. He told those that were invited that they should go and sit in a place of less honor, then if you had a place reserved for you in a more prominent position you could get an upgrade. (John Ashley paraphrase) Otherwise if you are seated in a place that was reserved for someone more distinguished that yourself, you would be asked to move and would be embarrassed.
He then turns His attention to the host of the feast. Jesus tells him something that I am sure he had never even considered before. Don’t invite you friends to your feasts that can pay you back. Invite those that would never be able to reimburse you: the poor the maimed, the lame, the blind. The people that have probably never experienced that type of celebration themselves. The outcome of such an invitation would be a blessing and a reward in the resurrection.
Many times we go out of our way to help, encourage and be a blessing to those that can return the favor. It’s only natural to invite folks over for dinner that have had you to their home, otherwise that just wouldn’t be fair. Jesus is teaching us today that we need to be a blessing to people that we should never expect any return from this side of heaven. There are people all around us that could use some encouragement that may never say thank you or return the favor, but we need to be willing to reach out to them.
The greatest thing we can do for anyone is to speak the gospel to them. There is no way for anyone to repay the Lord for what he has done for us, or the person that shared Christ with us. Yet, we pick and choose those that are lovely or we perceive to be “savable” to witness to. Those that are in the pits of despair are usually people that understand they have a need. Those are people that are hurting and could use some love and care. We should not exclude anyone from the greatest gift ever given in our Savior Jesus Christ.
The Lord told the Pharisee that invited Him to the feast, that if He would invite those that could never pay him back, that he would be blessed in his deed. We need to take a look around us today and see who it is that we could be a blessing to, that may never be able to pay us back. Therein lies the blessing. Remember Jesus said “It is more blessed to give than to receive.
Let’s try to encourage a broken soul today.