I held up the soft velvet slacks that matched my black suede heels and set off the sparkling sapphire earrings and necklace my husband had given me. Perfect for my nephew’s wedding–except for one thing. “Lord, where do I find the right black velvet top?”
The name of a store came to mind. As unlikely as it seemed to me, I went.
Up and down the aisles of thrift store clothing, I checked one possibility after another. Too big. Too small. Too revealing. Material too different. Ugly buttons. Hopeless!
On the way out, my gaze skimmed absently over a rack of items to be re-hung. Wait!
I snatched a black velvet top from the rack. Right size. Right neckline. Right sleeve length. A perfect match for the slacks. Thanking the Lord, I headed for the checkout.
Most of us try to select the right clothing to attend a wedding celebration, but Jesus told the story of one who did not.
It seems a king held a great wedding feast. When the banquet was ready and the hall filled, he came to greet his guests and noticed one who was not appropriately clothed. “Why?” the king asked.
The man didn’t answer. He had no excuse. Because the king had provided wedding garments for those who didn’t have them, the man’s lack of proper clothing was nothing but outright rebellion. He wanted to be included, but on his own terms.
The king wasted no time. He had the man thrown out (Matthew 22:1-14).
One day God will call us to the Wedding Feast of the Lamb. We each are to arrive appropriately clothed in the beautiful garment Jesus purchased for us by his death on the cross. His Word says Jesus gives this spotless garment of his righteousness to all who meet certain requirements–believe he is God, admit they are sinners, and accept his blood-bought forgiveness.
While many believe in more than one way to heaven, the truth is that, like the king is Jesus’ story, only God can say what he requires. Do we want to enjoy eternity in heaven? Then it must be on his terms–which he makes lovingly clear in his Word.
Focus: (Jesus speaking) I am the way … no one can come to the Father except through me” ~ John 14:6, New Living Translation.
What do you think about God’s requirements for enjoying eternity in heaven, and why?