What Is Holding You Back?

This week’s church wide lesson included Doctrine and Covenants 58:8-11

And also that a feast of fat things might be prepared for the apoor; yea, a feast of fat things, of wine on the blees well refined, that the earth may know that the mouths of the prophets shall not fail;

Yea, a supper of the house of the Lord, well prepared, unto which all anations shall be invited.

10 First, the rich and the learned, the wise and the noble;

11 And after that cometh the day of my power; then shall the apoor, the lame, and the blind, and the deaf, come in unto the bmarriage of the Lamb, and partake of the csupper of the Lord, prepared for the great day to come.

If you read that and get confused about why the rich and learned, wise and noble are invited first it is important to head over to the new testament and read the parable which is being referred to.

Luke 14:16-23

16 Then said he unto him, A certain man made a great supper, and bade many:

17 And sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now ready.

18 And they all with one consent began to make aexcuse. The first said unto him, I have bought a piece of ground, and I must needs go and see it: I pray thee have me excused.

19 And another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to prove them: I pray thee have me excused.

20 And another said, I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.

21 So that servant came, and shewed his lord these things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the ahalt, and the blind.

22 And the servant said, Lord, it is done as thou hast commanded, and yet there is room.

23 And the alord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and bhedges, and ccompel them to come in, that my house may be filled.

So the master of the house invites a bunch of people, these were not poor people. They had means and probably lots of other blessings in their lives. You can see that because one bought land and one bought 5 oxen – not inexpensive things – and one got married which often takes money or a dowrey.

All of the people he had invited had some excuse not to come to the feast that they had been invited to. Evidently they weren’t sure of the timing of the feast or they may have put it on their calendar I guess. So the servant goes back to the master and told him that nobody was coming. Imagine how hurt you would feel if you put in all that work and preparation and nobody cared enough to come.

The master says to go out and invite the poor and the maimed and the halt and the blind. and then he sends the servant again to the very edges of society to the highways and the hedges. He says to compel them to come so that the house will be full.

I have a few questions.

1. What is the meaning of compel here? Strong’s translation from the original Greek says the word means necessitate. Thayer’s definition says necessitate, compel, drive to, constrain a. by force or threats b. by permission entreaties c. by other means.

I’m going to assume that the Lord would not compel us to come by threats or force. But he may use all other means to encourage us or persuede us to come to His feast.

2. What is making the people say they can’t come? It is the business of living. It is everyday things. They don’t know it is going to be amazing when they get there so they stick to their own plan.

3. What do you think would have helped them to make the decision to join the feast? I think there are a few things but the fist thing that came to my mind was they don’t have a relationship with or feel close to the master of the house. Think of some parties you’ve been invited to in the past. Think of one that when you got the invitation it went right on the calendar and nothing could keep you away. Now think of an invitation you got and you thought you might go if nothing better was going on or you just neglected to add it to your calendar. Now compare the people who were throwing those two parties and how you feel about them.

Maybe some answers

So now let’s put these things into practice. How can we incorporate these things into our lives? Let’s go back to the questions one by one and see if we can think of anything we might change in our own lives to be ready for the call.

1. To answer this and put myself in here I like to think of myself as the servant and Jesus as the master. Did you ever have a person who you were asked to visit with and that person would jsut always say they were fine and wouldn;t want you to come over to see them in person? Did you give up then or did you keep calling and asking about them and their life and becaome a friend until they trusted you. hat could be considered compelling – just over a long time. Are you talking abuot the Gospel of Jesus Christ whenever you have an opportunity so you an help with the gathering?

2. Is the business of living keeping you from being fully commited? Are you missing the Savior’s call to you through the Holy Ghost asking you to come along? What can you rearrange so that you can be fully ready for when you are asked to come to the Lord’s house? None of the things in the parable were bad things/sin. But we must always be ready to choose the better part.

3. How can you/I increase our closeness to Jesus Christ? How can we improve our relationship and how can we increase our capacity to receive revelation and act on it when it comes? The answer to this question will be different for all of us but I know that if you ask Heavenly Father that question you will receive an answer and then it will be up to you to move forward.

Today I watched a movie about Grace Kelly about a short period of her time as Princess of Monaco called “Grace of Manaco“. At one point she was speaking to a priest who she had a good friendship with and the priest said something that I thought was so true. He said, “True love is devotion.” And I wrote that down immediately. True love isn’t fairy tales, it is sticking with the one you love. It made me consider about my devotion to the Lord. Am I where I want to be as far as my love for Him is concerned. Of course we all have a lot of growing to do but I think these self relective moments are useful to help us to continue to grow in the ways the Lord would have us.

Just one more question. Is this parable related to our every day Gospel Feast or does it have to do with our eternal reward? Today I’m going to say that it’s both and this life is helping us to prepare for the life to come and so a focus on service and ministering and gathering together will be amazing practice for the eternities.

Let me know if you have any further thoughts about this beautiful parable.

Photo by Kim Daniels on Unsplash


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