Matthew 22:2-3 "The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a marriage feast for his son, and sent his servants to call those who were invited to the marriage feast; but they would not come.
This is the time of year when its good to think about Thanksgiving. For while we know that God gives us each day our daily bread, during the harvest, we can see how God is giving us not only the bread for today, but for many days to come. It is good to thank God for sending the rain and the sun, for preserving us from harm and peril, and having planted the seed, allowing us to see the harvest. And if we need God to provide for us our daily bread, that is everything that is needed for our body, we also need God for that which we need in our soul - for our soul needs to know that we have peace with God - yet sin separates us from God and robs us of peace. We know we are all sinners, because of the 10 commandments, which we have not kept, from the testimony of our conscience, and because the scriptures assure us that we all sin much daily, and that the wages of sin is death. We come to church to hear the good news of the forgiveness of sins which is ours in Jesus Christ. Because Jesus is our Savior, we have life and hope, peace and joy, we have reason to give thanks and praise - because although we have by our words and deeds earned God's wrath and condemnation, God has had mercy on us, forgiven us our sins, made us children of God, and given us everlasting life. It is these things that cause us to look at Sunday mornings as a time when we are invited to a marriage feast.
One of the most amazing things about God, is his boundless love - God wants all men to be saved, God wants everyone to know about Jesus, about the forgiveness of sins, God wants everyone to know his love, peace, and joy - but the devil doesn't want anyone saved - he wants everyone to suffer with him in Hell forever. So it is that while God invites all to this great feast - many just don't make it. So many things to do - and they think they don't need God.
And that points to one of the biggest problems of all - for we learn in the First Commandment, I am the Lord your God, you shall not have any other God before me. What does this mean? We should fear love and trust in God above all things. Any time God doesn't come first, it is probable that we have an other god, and that is a sin, and the wages of sin is death, and we will surely perish without the forgiveness of sins which come to us in Jesus Christ. There is nothing we can do to earn the forgiveness of sins for ourselves. Without Jesus we will perish.
But coming to church is not enough by itself. There are some who come to church and do not hear the good news because they are sleeping. There are some who come to church and do not hear the good news because they are busy with other things. There are some who come to church and want to hear the good news, but are distracted. We cannot trust in ourselves, our salvation is not in ourselves. We trust in the mercy of God and rely on the love we have come to know in Jesus our Savior - We are not saved because we come to church, but we are saved by Jesus blood and righteousness.
We are sinners, and we thank God for his grace, his mercy and his love, which are ours in Jesus Christ - this is our hope, this is our faith, this is where we find peace, not in what we do, but in what God has done for us in Jesus.