In the world but not of it

August 13, 2010

God wants a full house…

Filed under: Uncategorized — In the world but not of it @ 5:00 am

But they all with one [accord] began to make excuses. Luke 14:18

Some years ago Premier Khrushchev was speaking before the Supreme Soviet and was severely critical of the late Premier Stalin. While he was speaking someone from the audience sent up a note: “What were you doing when Stalin committed all these atrocities?”

Khrushchev shouted, “Who sent up that note?” Not a person stirred. “I’ll give him one minute to stand up!” The seconds ticked off. Still no one moved. “All right, I’ll tell you what I was doing. I was doing exactly what the writer of this note was doing–exactly nothing! I was afraid to be counted!”

The parable that Jesus told in Luke 14:16-24 is one on the reality of excuses and central to this parable are the excuses that are offered. The excuses are different, but really all the same – they all with one accord began to make excuses.

We make excuses and they are fashioned for convenience, and are clung to in desperation.

The first two excuses have to do with material things and are actually quite lame but perhaps not too different from some of the ones we’ve made at times. After all, who really buys a piece of land first, and then goes to check the quality and value of it?

If you have already bought ten oxen, what is the use of testing them after you have already bought them? When we buy something new, we are almost always preoccupied by it.

Preoccupation with the things of the world is a common excuse for not following Jesus.

The third excuse has to do with a man who puts his family before the Lord. Perhaps in our society “putting family first” is seemingly the right thing to do but how can a man truly look after his family if his relationship with the Lord is not first, not preeminent?

These excuse makers condemn themselves; their excuses are only a thin veil hiding the fact that they do not want to come. In fact, the underpinning of the excuses we make is really a lack of desire and interest. It is another form of stating that this is not important enough to us…

But despite the many excuses people make for not committing their lives fully to Him, the Lord continues to reach out. Later in the parable Jesus uses the phrase “compel them to come” (V23) as a way to describe the urgency with which the Father wants people to join this feast, this kingdom…

God wants a full house…

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