The Great Invitation
Jesus told a parable in Luke chapter 14 concerning the Great Invitation. "A certain man gave a great supper and invited many (Luke 14:16)." As the invitation went out a series of excuses were offered. Apparently people did not want to come to the supper and offered a few excuses.
1. One guy bought some 'ground' and wanted to go and see it. Now, THAT'S exciting! 'Hey honey, look at this awesome piece of ground.'
2. Another bought five yoke of oxen. Again, excitement plus. ' Wow Honey, look at those oxen. They pull that cart so well. Better than anyone could ever have imagined!'
3. Another just got married. Here's an idea brain-ianic. Bring her!
As I read to feeble excuses I started to think of some feeble excuses we have in our culture. We just studied Am I A Fan or A Follower at our church--and I'm thinking that it was a 'nice' series but life changing? Church changing? Hmmm--Maybe not!
We are a culture of excuses. We have dropped the priority of Jesus, the kingdom of Heaven, meeting together, worship etc. to a pretty low place. We have tons of reasons why it is:
1. Inconvenient to give money to the poor, give money to missions, give money to help finance our local church.
2. Inconvenient to feed our souls. We stuff our faces regularly and can only manage 10 minutes every other day to read a few Psalms. Really?
3. Inconvenient to prayer privately or corporately.
4. Inconvenient to serve, teach a class or help a neighbour who is sick.
5. Inconvenient to visit the lonely.
6. Inconvenient to stop gossiping, stop being lazy, judgmental or indifferent.
The reason why it is inconvenient is our excuses. They are different, but not really from Luke 14.
We have dumb excuses and we need to lay those excuses on some altar somewhere and let the Holy Spirit burn those excuses up!
Here is the incredibly scary part of the parable. Jesus said, those who were invited got crossed off the list! "For I say to you that none of those who were invited shall taste my supper (Luke 14:24)."
I don't want to get crossed off the list because of one of my dumb excuses!