Matthew 22:11
Parallel Verses
New International Version
"But when the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes.

New Living Translation
"But when the king came in to meet the guests, he noticed a man who wasn't wearing the proper clothes for a wedding.

English Standard Version
“But when the king came in to look at the guests, he saw there a man who had no wedding garment.

New American Standard Bible
"But when the king came in to look over the dinner guests, he saw a man there who was not dressed in wedding clothes,

King James Bible
And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
But when the king came in to view the guests, he saw a man there who was not dressed for a wedding.

International Standard Version
"When the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes.

NET Bible
But when the king came in to see the wedding guests, he saw a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And the King entered to see the guests and he saw a man there who was not wearing a wedding garment.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"When the king came to see the guests, he saw a person who was not dressed in the wedding clothes [provided for the guests].

Jubilee Bible 2000
And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man who did not have on a wedding garment,

King James 2000 Bible
And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man who had not on a wedding garment:

American King James Version
And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment:

American Standard Version
But when the king came in to behold the guests, he saw there a man who had not on a wedding-garment:

Douay-Rheims Bible
And the king went in to see the guests: and he saw there a man who had not on a wedding garment.

Darby Bible Translation
And the king, having gone in to see the guests, beheld there a man not clothed with a wedding garment.

English Revised Version
But when the king came in to behold the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding-garment:

Webster's Bible Translation
And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man who had not a wedding-garment:

Weymouth New Testament
"Now the king came in to see the guests; and among them he discovered one who was not wearing a wedding-robe.

World English Bible
But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man who didn't have on wedding clothing,

Young's Literal Translation
'And the king having come in to view those reclining, saw there a man not clothed with clothing of the marriage-feast,
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

22:1-14 The provision made for perishing souls in the gospel, is represented by a royal feast made by a king, with eastern liberality, on the marriage of his son. Our merciful God has not only provided food, but a royal feast, for the perishing souls of his rebellious creatures. There is enough and to spare, of every thing that can add to our present comfort and everlasting happiness, in the salvation of his Son Jesus Christ. The guests first invited were the Jews. When the prophets of the Old Testament prevailed not, nor John the Baptist, nor Christ himself, who told them the kingdom of God was at hand, the apostles and ministers of the gospel were sent, after Christ's resurrection, to tell them it was come, and to persuade them to accept the offer. The reason why sinners come not to Christ and salvation by him, is, not because they cannot, but because they will not. Making light of Christ, and of the great salvation wrought out by him, is the damning sin of the world. They were careless. Multitudes perish for ever through mere carelessness, who show no direct aversion, but are careless as to their souls. Also the business and profit of worldly employments hinder many in closing with the Saviour. Both farmers and merchants must be diligent; but whatever we have of the world in our hands, our care must be to keep it out of our hearts, lest it come between us and Christ. The utter ruin coming upon the Jewish church and nation, is here represented. Persecution of Christ's faithful ministers fills up the measure of guilt of any people. The offer of Christ and salvation to the Gentiles was not expected; it was such a surprise as it would be to wayfaring men, to be invited to a royal wedding-feast. The design of the gospel is to gather souls to Christ; all the children of God scattered abroad, Joh 10:16; 11:52. The case of hypocrites is represented by the guest that had not on a wedding-garment. It concerns all to prepare for the scrutiny; and those, and those only, who put on the Lord Jesus, who have a Christian temper of mind, who live by faith in Christ, and to whom he is all in all, have the wedding-garment. The imputed righteousness of Christ, and the sanctification of the Spirit, are both alike necessary. No man has the wedding-garment by nature, or can form it for himself. The day is coming, when hypocrites will be called to account for all their presumptuous intruding into gospel ordinances, and usurpation of gospel privileges. Take him away. Those that walk unworthy of Christianity, forfeit all the happiness they presumptuously claimed. Our Saviour here passes out of the parable into that which it teaches. Hypocrites go by the light of the gospel itself down to utter darkness. Many are called to the wedding-feast, that is, to salvation, but few have the wedding-garment, the righteousness of Christ, the sanctification of the Spirit. Then let us examine ourselves whether we are in the faith, and seek to be approved by the King.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 11. - The king came in to see the guests, who by this time had taken their appointed places at table. This second portion of the parable teaches that admission to the visible Church is not all that is required; there is also a scrutiny to be undergone and an award to be made. And that this investigation is keen and searching is denoted by the verb used, θεάσασθαι, which means not merely, to see casually, but to gaze upon with the intent of seeing the real nature and character of an object. The king makes his appearance in the banqueting hall, not to feast with the guests, but to welcome them, and to examine if they are properly ordered, served, and fitted for the high honour accorded to them. How close and personal is this inquiry is shown by the immediate detection of one unseemly guest among the multitude. The time when he thus comes is, in one view, the day of judgment; but such visitation and scrutiny are always recurring, as at solemn seasons, in days of trial, sacred services, holy communion, when he searches men's hearts, and sees if they are prepared for his presence. Which had not on a wedding garment; οὐκ ἐνδεδυμένον ἔνδυμα γάμου: not garbed in wedding garment, the genitive expressing the peculiar character or quality of the garment. Wordsworth compares similar phrases: Luke 16:9; 2 Thessalonians 2:3, 9; James 1:25; 2 Peter 2:1, etc. It is said to have been an Oriental custom to present each guest invited to a royal feast with a festive robe to be worn on the occasion, as nowadays persons admitted to the royal presence are clothed with a caftan. Traces of the custom have been found in Genesis 45:22; Judges 14:12; 2 Kings 5:22; 2 Kings 10:22; but they are not very convincing. The Romans seem to have had such a custom, the robes being called "cenatoria." Thus Martial, 10:87, 11, writes -

"Pugnorum reus ebriaeque noctis,
Cenatoria mittat advocato."
But the fact remains that this guest had not presented himself in attire befitting the solemnity; in his everyday garb, and with no proper preparation, he had dared to come to this great festival. What is the spiritual meaning of the wedding garment is much disputed. It is evidently some virtue, or quality, or mark which conditions admission to the enjoyment of the kingdom of God. On the one hand, it is said that both bad and good guests wear it, and its possession does not alter the character of the wearer. Dress is something external and visible, therefore the garment cannot represent an inward grace or feeling, but some outward token by which Christians are distinguished, such as open reception of baptism and sacraments, and public profession of the faith. On the other hand, it is contended that the whole matter is spiritual, though veiled in material forms, and is concerned with man's moral and spiritual nature. Hence it by no means follows that the wedding garment is not intended to have a spiritual signification. Ancient commentators universally look upon it in this light. Some regard it as an emblem of faith in Christ; others, of faith and love combined. "Habete fidem cum dilectione," writes St. Augustine, 'Serm.,' 90, "ista est vestis nuptialis." But it must be observed that faith of some sort was shown by accepting the invitation; so this could not be represented by the special garb which was absent. Others, again, see in it good works, or humility, or the purity effected by the grace of the Holy Spirit. Some moderns take it of "imputed," others of imparted, righteousness, bringing their controversies into the King's presence. chamber. The English Church, taking the marriage feast as a figure of the Holy Communion, applies the wedding garment to that cleansing of the conscience which enables persons to come holy and clean to that heavenly feast (see the first Exhortation to Holy Communion). This is legitimate, but too restricted in its reference. The feast denotes the present and future kingdom of God; the entrance to this is a matter of free grace; the garment is moral fitness, the life and conduct dependent on the due use of God's grace. This is in the power of all who have received the call; they have to act up to the high calling, to be wholly, heartily, really what they profess to be. The scrutiny, whether made in this life or in the life to come, shows how grace has been used, if we have put on Christ, if we have kept our soul pure and white, unsullied by sin, or washed clean by penitential tears and the blood of Christ (see Revelation 19:8). The metaphor concerning this robe of righteousness is found in Isaiah 61:10, "He hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with a garland, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels." Commentators compare (but with doubtful appositeness) Zephaniah 1:7, 8.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

And when the king came in to see the guests,.... Professors of religion, members of churches, whom God takes particular notice of; he is an omniscient being, and his eyes are upon all men and their actions, and especially on such as are called by his name: he takes notice how they behave in the exercise of grace, and discharge of duty, and distinguishes hypocrites from real believers; the latter of which he has a special affection for, makes rich and large provisions for them, and protects and defends them; he knows them that are his, and gives them marks of respect; and he spies out such as are not, and will in his own time discover them, to their utter confusion and ruin. There are certain times and seasons, when God may be said to come in to see his guests; as sometimes in a way of gracious visits to his dear children, when he bids them welcome to the entertainment of his house, and invites them to eat and drink abundantly: and sometimes in a way of providence, against formal professors and hypocrites; and at the last judgment, when he will separate the sheep from the goats, and discern between the righteous and the wicked:

he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment; by which is meant, not good works, or a holy life and conversation, nor any particular grace of the Spirit, as faith, or charity, or humility, or repentance, or any other, nor the whole work of sanctification, nor the Holy Ghost, but the righteousness of Christ: for though good works are the outward conversation garments of believers, and these greatly become them and adorn the doctrine of Christ, yet they are imperfect, and have their spots, and need washing in the blood of Christ, and cannot in themselves recommend them to God; and though the Holy Spirit and his graces, his work of holiness upon the heart, make the saints all glorious within, yet not these, but the garment of Christ's righteousness, is their clothing of wrought gold, and raiment of needlework, in which they are brought into the king's presence: this, like a garment, is without them, and put upon them; and which covers and protects them, and beautifies and adorns them; and which may be called a wedding garment, because it is that, in which the elect of God were betrothed to Christ; in which they are made ready and prepared for him, as a bride adorned for her husband: and in which they will be introduced into his presence, and be by him presented, first to himself, and then to his Father, without spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing. This man had not on this garment, this robe of righteousness; it was not imputed to him; he had no knowledge of it; or if he had any, it was only a speculative one; he had no true faith in it; he had never put on Christ, as the Lord his righteousness; he had got into a church state without it, though there is no entrance into the kingdom of heaven but by it.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

11. And when the king came in to see the guests—Solemn expression this, of that omniscient inspection of every professed disciple of the Lord Jesus from age to age, in virtue of which his true character will hereafter be judicially proclaimed!

he saw there a man—This shows that it is the judgment of individuals which is intended in this latter part of the parable: the first part represents rather national judgment.

which had not on a wedding garment—The language here is drawn from the following remarkable passage in Zep 1:7, 8:—"Hold thy peace at the presence of the Lord God; for the day of the Lord is at hand: for the Lord hath prepared a sacrifice, He hath bid His guests. And it shall come to pass in the day of the Lord's sacrifice, that I will punish the princes, and the king's children, and all such as are clothed with strange apparel." The custom in the East of presenting festival garments (see Ge 45:22; 2Ki 5:22), even though nor clearly proved, Is certainly presupposed here. It undoubtedly means something which they bring not of their own—for how could they have any such dress who were gathered in from the highways indiscriminately?—but which they receive as their appropriate dress. And what can that be but what is meant by "putting on the Lord Jesus," as "The Lord Our Righteousness?" (See Ps 45:13, 14). Nor could such language be strange to those in whose ears had so long resounded those words of prophetic joy: "I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for He hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, He hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels" (Isa 61:10).

Matthew 22:11 Additional Commentaries
Context
The Parable of the Banquet
10"Those slaves went out into the streets and gathered together all they found, both evil and good; and the wedding hall was filled with dinner guests. 11"But when the king came in to look over the dinner guests, he saw a man there who was not dressed in wedding clothes, 12and he said to him, 'Friend, how did you come in here without wedding clothes?' And the man was speechless.…
Cross References
2 Kings 10:22
And Jehu said to the keeper of the wardrobe, "Bring robes for all the servants of Baal." So he brought out robes for them.

Zechariah 3:3
Now Joshua was dressed in filthy clothes as he stood before the angel.

Zechariah 3:4
The angel said to those who were standing before him, "Take off his filthy clothes." Then he said to Joshua, "See, I have taken away your sin, and I will put fine garments on you."

Matthew 22:10
So the servants went out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find, the bad as well as the good, and the wedding hall was filled with guests.
Treasury of Scripture

And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment:

when.

Matthew 3:12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, …

Matthew 13:30 Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest …

Matthew 25:31,32 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels …

Zephaniah 1:12 And it shall come to pass at that time, that I will search Jerusalem …

1 Corinthians 4:5 Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who …

Hebrews 4:12,13 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any …

Revelation 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall …

which.

2 Kings 10:22 And he said to him that was over the vestry, Bring forth vestments …

Psalm 45:13,14 The king's daughter is all glorious within: her clothing is of worked gold…

Isaiah 52:1 Awake, awake; put on your strength, O Zion; put on your beautiful …

Isaiah 61:3-10 To appoint to them that mourn in Zion, to give to them beauty for …

Isaiah 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are …

Zechariah 3:3,4 Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel…

Lamentations 5:22 But you have utterly rejected us; you are very wroth against us.

Romans 3:22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ to …

Romans 13:14 But put you on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for …

Galatians 3:27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.

2 Corinthians 5:3 If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked.

Ephesians 4:24 And that you put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness …

Colossians 3:10,11 And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after …

Revelation 3:4,5,18 You have a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their …

Revelation 16:15 Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watches, and keeps …

Revelation 19:8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, …

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