NO MORE EXCUSES!
(Sermon notes take from a book called Yes, Lord, I Have Sinned: But I Have Several Excellent by James W. Moore.)
Luke 14:15-24 NIV - When one of those at the table with him heard this, he said to Jesus, "Blessed is the man who will eat at the feast in the kingdom of God." (16) Jesus replied: "A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests. (17) At the time of the banquet he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited, ’Come, for everything is now ready.’ (18) "But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said, ’I have just bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please excuse me.’ (19) "Another said, ’I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’ (20) "Still another said, ’I just got married, so I can’t come.’ (21) "The servant came back and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and ordered his servant, ’Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame.’ (22) "’Sir,’ the servant said, ’what you ordered has been done, but there is still room.’ (23) "Then the master told his servant, ’Go out to the roads and country lanes and make them come in, so that my house will be full. (24) I tell you, not one of those men who were invited will get a taste of my banquet.’"
Definition of EXCUSE - that which is to make (an offense or crime) seem less serious or some thing used to justify a fault.
Today we live in frank times, nothing is kept under hat – NOTHING
• TV & Radio try and capitalize on these issues
o Sexual Preference
o Broken Marriages
o Having Children out of Wedlock
o Uses of Drugs and Alcohol
o Living Together without being Married
• We laugh and giggle at these things
• We even applaud these issues
Our Problem is not that we hesitate to admit anything.
Our problem is that we are learning to justify everything!
We all have excuses, and can make them at a drop of the hat
Whatever we do or say we have an excuse ready to justify what we have done or what we might do in order to make it right in our eyes. But what is God seeing?
I would like to open your eyes tonight to the fact that we excuse our self in many areas and fall short in Gods glory in many different ways. Tonight we hope to take away the excuses you use to use. Let us look at some ways we excuse our selves…
We Excuse ourselves with words
• Missing church
o Hebrews 10:24-27 NLT Think of ways to encourage one another to outbursts of love and good deeds. (25) And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage and warn each other, especially now that the day of his coming back again is drawing near. (26) Dear friends, if we deliberately continue sinning after we have received a full knowledge of the truth, there is no other sacrifice that will cover these sins. (27) There will be nothing to look forward to but the terrible expectation of God’s judgment and the raging fire that will consume his enemies.
o In a certain mountain village in Europe several centuries ago, a nobleman wondered what legacy he should leave to his townspeople. At last he decided to build them a church. No one saw the complete plans for the church until it was finished. When the people gathered, they marveled at its beauty and completeness. Then someone asked, "But where are the lamps? How will it be lighted?" The nobleman pointed to some brackets in the walls. Then he gave to each family a lamp, which they were to bring with them each time they came to worship. "Each time you are here the area where you are seated will be lighted," the nobleman said. "Each time you are not here, that area will be dark. This is to remind you that whenever you fail to come to church, some part of God’s house will be dark."
o Weather, Family coming over, Clothing, Children, Bible, etc…
o I don’t steal, I obtain
o The stores overcharge anyways
o It is my fault, he made me mad, that’s why I took it
o Exodus 20:15 NLT - "Do not steal.
o It is adult, honest, realistic speech
o What it is childish, unreal and dishonest
o My boyfriend/girlfriend doesn’t understand me
o We are in love, doesn’t that make it alright?
o In relationships, where is God? Is He first or second or last?
o We are not talking about them, we are discussing them
o Rumor or talk of a personal, sensational, or intimate nature when they are not present.
o Leviticus 19:16 NLT "Do not spread slanderous gossip among your people. "Do not try to get ahead at the cost of your neighbor’s life, for I am the LORD.
o Everyone knows I have a bad temper, they should not push me
o Do you realize the damage that is left behind, the hurt and devastation?
o Proverbs 16:32 NIV - Better a patient man than a warrior, a man who controls his temper than one who takes a city.
o To overcome our own passions, requires more steady management, than obtaining victory over an enemy.
o God’s word is adamant about vengeance!
o He say’s don’t do it, but yet we do
o Do you believe in God’s word and what He says he will do?
o Romans 12:19 NLT - Dear friends, never avenge yourselves. Leave that to God. For it is written, "I will take vengeance; I will repay those who deserve it," says the Lord.
We Excuse our selves with Scapegoats & Blaming Others
• Adam blamed Eve, Eve Blamed the serpent
• It is not my Fault, it never is!
• We need to accept our shortcomings and have God fix them.
• Try apologizing instead of pointing blame, accept your doings be responsible.
We excuse ourselves by Blaming our Past
• We hold racial ideas, sexual prejudice, and beliefs against each other
• Adam & Eve - sin
• My mom & dad always did it this way, and I’m not going to change it now
We excuse ourselves by Blaming Evil Spirits
• The devil made me do it!
• We say we were weak and the enemy tempted me
• A woman bought a extravagant dress, and the husband asked why did it have to be so extravagant, She said the devil made me buy it, husband asked, why didn’t you say get behind me Satan?, She said he did and said it looked as good in the front as it did in the back, so I bought it
• Are we really that helpless? Would our God leave us like that? NO!
• We just don’t rely on Him, but use Him when we need Him
• He told us He would never leave us nor forsake us!
What does Christian Faith say about excuses?
• God see through all our excuses
o God knows us from the inside not the outside
o You can not con God
o Our excuses seem frail and feeble under the light of God
The parable in the beginning
• We can make excuses for something we want to do or not do.
• God sees through them
• You ever think your excuses are keeping you out of God’s party, His kingdom, His presence?
• God is more interested in forgiving our Sins then in hearing our excuses
o Christ came to show us that forgiveness is at hand
o Prodigal Son parable in Luke 15, we all know it
Son coming home practicing his excuse
He comes home and recites excuse, father interrupts the excuse
He doesn’t want to hear it he wants to get on with party
Forgiveness was there, all he had to do was receive it
Bring out the best robe, give him a ring, Let’s have a feast
My son was dead but he is alive again!
• What God wants from us is not Excuses but Repentance
o What is said by the lips is not nearly as important as what happens in the heart
o Pastor Going to heaven and getting points, he needs 100
43 years service = 1 point
Visited shut ins = 1 point
Worked with young people = 1 point
Developed some Scout programs = 1 point
• 96 points still needed
He says, except for the grace of God that is all I have!
St. Peter Grace of God = 96 points, you may enter
What God wants in not excuses, but repentance and commitment. Yes we all have sinned, the bible tells us that, but we need not make up excuses, God sees through them and see through you.
• Are you willing to quit making excuses and serve God wholly and fully!
• Are you willing to live like you serve a living God?
In This Parable We See Many Things
• The man who was giving the banquet is God
• The slave that He sent out is Jesus.
• The people that Jesus was sent to are the Jews.
• So it is the Jews that got the first invitation to the dinner
o Those are the ones that made the excuses.
o Each one has an excuse as to why they cannot come,
o They think they are good reasons but we will see that they are not.
• Then the man sends His slave out into the streets and lanes of the city.
o Now we should understand that in the streets and the lanes of the city there are only other Jews.
The man (God) has not yet given up on the Jews,
Even though the first chosen ones have rejected his invitation.
• Some have come back with the slave to the dinner and have accepted the invitation.
• There is more room; all the chairs around the table are not yet taken.
• So next the man tells the slave to go out into the highway and hedges,
o Go out into the world and compel the Gentiles to come to my dinner.
o You see there is room for them at the table as well;
o A lot of room.
• In other words here, God is telling Jesus to go to the Jews first and then go to the Gentiles as well.
• Go tell everyone Jesus that I want to see them in my kingdom, and the room is bountiful.
• But God is angry here because He has invited His chosen people to come to His dinner and they all made excuses after excuses.
• The parable only gives three excuses but I would say that the man invited many and they all had excuses along the line of the ones given in the parable.