In the parable of the Great Banquet, Jesus says in Luke 14:18 Jesus said, “but they all alike began to make excuses.” Remember, the invitation giving the day of the banquet had already been extended and accepted weeks earlier. But these people began to make lame excuses at the last minute. In the Middle East, to decline an invitation from a great man was like a slap in the face, an massive insult. In verse 21, we are told the owner of the house became angry. God is still angered by the empty excuses people try to offer Him.
Remember an excuse is actually like gift-wrapping for a lie. Our culture has refined the art of making excuses. There are even a multitude of web sites suggesting hundreds of excuses you can give for any situation. They even have them divided into categories. For instance, there are excuses to use if you are caught sleeping at work. A couple of the excuses are: “They told me at the blood bank that this might happen.”
There were three excuses given in Jesus’ parable. They are the same excuses people are giving to God today. On the surface, they may appear to be legitimate reasons, but when you examine them, you’ll discover they are empty excuses they gave simply because they didn’t want to attend the party.
Excuse #1 is “I’ve got to take care of my stuff!”
The first man said he just bought some land and he had to go examine it. Now, how many of you would buy a piece of property without seeing it first? This man represents folks who are so possessed by their possessions they are controlled by them. They spend their lives buying more and more stuff and then they have to spend all their time protecting and maintaining and using all their stuff. Jesus said, “A man’s life does not consist of the abundance of his possessions.” (Luke 12:15).
Tomorrow we will take a look at the next two excuses.