This sermon is part of the sermon series "The Heart". See series.
If you've picked up nothing else from our study over these past weeks, I hope you've absorbed this simple truth: the heart of God throbs for human hearts. There is nothing about you that matters so much to God as the condition of your heart. There is nothing to which God is more committed than the healing of your heart from all that hurts and hinders it. But there's a second very important truth I hope you've also absorbed over the course of our studies these past weeks and it is this: God can only save hearts willing to be found.
If the Gerasene man had not been willing to throw himself at the feet of Jesus; if the Samaritan woman had not been willing to stay with Jesus at the well; if the younger son had not been willing to turn his heart toward home; if the elder brother remained unwilling to accept his father's invitation to come into the house, the restoration of their hearts could not happen. In the same way, unless you and I are willing to get close enough to God to let him transfuse our hearts with the life-blood of his heart, then healing for us cannot happen.
God invites your heart to a banquet.
This is why I want to look with you today at one further teaching of Jesus on this subject. In Luke chapter 14, Jesus tells the story of a "certain man [who] was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests." Now, it helps to understand that throughout the New Testament, the image of a "great banquet" is used as a metaphor for the place where God addresses our deepest needs. Whether it is at the last supper described in the gospels or at the marriage supper of the Lamb described in the Book of Revelation, these images of great banquets symbolize God's heart-throbbing desire to accomplish three vital transformations in ...
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