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January 21, 2022

Matthew 22 Evangelism Walks Invigorate CU Libertas

By Anne Kerhoulas, Staff Writer

Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding feast is ready, but those invited were not worthy. Go therefore to the main roads and invite to the wedding feast as many as you find.’ And those servants went out into the roads and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good. So the wedding hall was filled with guests. - Matthew 22:8-10

 

The parables Jesus told were meant to capture the imagination of his disciples and those who were listening because the kingdom of heaven He taught them about was an unimaginable place—a place so valuable you would sell everything you had to go there; a place so welcoming that anyone could enter no matter their social status.

1 brown matt 22

In Matthew 22, Jesus says the Kingdom of heaven is like a wedding feast at which the guests who were invited did not show up. So the master of the house sent the servants out to invite anyone they could find. Can you imagine? The most lavish of feasts, rejected by many and yet made available to all? This invitation is a scandalous one that is intended to challenge the hearer's assumptions about who should be invited to the wedding and who will actually come. And it’s what students at Brown University with CU Libertas were thinking about when they reached out to their peers last semester during the ministry’s Matthew 22 evangelism walks.

When it comes to the Kingdom of Heaven, the invitation to come to the feast reaches farther and wider than we could ever imagine. In our limited imaginations of what Jesus can and desires to do, we assume that certain people would never respond to the invitation to join us at church or listen to a sermon online or study the Bible with us. 

Jesus tells this parable to challenge our assumptions of who will be brought into the family of God because the reality is, the gospel does not discriminate as we do. It’s why Paul, the foremost persecutor of Jesus and his followers became his greatest apostle. It’s why CS Lewis, an atheist at one point, called himself the most unlikely convert. Who could fathom the depth of the grace of Christ and his pursuing, inviting love that beckons even the least likely to come and follow him? 

This is the vision broadening the imaginations of students of CU Libertas. Could that upperclassmen student who was so burned by the church ever be softened by the love of Christ again? Could someone with no background in Christianity hear the gospel and respond in faith? Could that friend who dabbles in new age spirituality ever see the truth of Christ? Yes, yes, and yes. 

Matthew 22 bids us, as servants of the Kingdom of God, to invite everyone with boldness and expectation into communion with Christ. As CU Libertas students have done that, they have been humbled and encouraged to see their peers responding to their invitation with eagerness and interest. Spending time in prayer together before they go out, the students ask the Lord to lead them to the right people as they disperse across campus, handing out small goodie bags with a Bible verse, a piece of candy, and information about CU Libertas events. As they start conversations, they also regularly pray for the students they encounter as a simple way to bless them.

Not surprisingly, the Lord has used this weekly evangelism walk to give students the opportunity to connect with specific friends they have prayed for over the past semester or even years. By His Spirit, he leads CU Libertas students into divine appointments as they watch their peers and friends light up at the invitation to attend an event or receive prayer.

“We prayed beforehand for God to lead us to those that need to know Him,” said Sheri Casali, a Christian Union ministry fellow at Brown. “On one of our walks, we saw a male student that comes from a Muslim background. One of the freshman women in our group knew him and has been praying for him. We stopped, talked to him, and gave him a prayer card. He started following our Instagram that day and wanted to come to our Christmas party. We are so grateful the Lord put him in our path and so encouraged to see the Lord answer prayer!”

Praise God that He continues to draw His people to Himself for His glory!

RELATED: Want to go deeper in your faith? Click here to receive a free download of Christian Union’s "Seeking God Lifestyle” Bible Course Manual.