Come to the party

Things I miss about teaching at SCHOOL – the excuses children make.

I was late for class because i was fighting with a kid who said that you werent the best teacher in the world
on the way to school i was feeding the ducks and my homework fell in
i made my homework into a paper plane and it was highjacked
I ate my homework because I didn’t have any ice cream, but it had all the answers on it so it made me smarter.
I was late for class because the bell rang before I got here!!
Dear School: Please ekscuse John being absent on Jan. 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, and also 33.
The train had a puncture

WORK EXCUSES

I cant come to work because I lost the house keys, I’m locked in.
It is against my religion to work on Mondays and Wednesdays.
I’d love to come to work today, but I got on the wrong train and I’m now in Edinburgh.
I cant come to work because the aliens are coming tonight and I’m baking cakes to give to them as peace offerings.
I am not coming in because I tried to dye my hair blonde, but it came out green!
“I am converting my calendar from Julian to Gregorian.”
“The dog ate my car keys. We’re going to hitchhike to the vet.”
I’m calling in because I am sick: sick – of work!

GENERAL EXCUSES

Id love to but… Im teaching my cat to sing.
I’d love to but… my dogs teaching me to bark.
i’d love to, but ……. i gotta go walk my turtle.
I’d love to but……..I’m migrating south for the winter.
I’d love to but… I’m trying to be less popular.
I’d love to but… None of my socks match.

Crazy excuses – but none as crazy as the excuses offered by the party guests in the story Jesus told.
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 have just got married, so I can’t come.’

These could sound plausible reasons for missing even a banquet until we read carefully.
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.
In those days people didn’t have diaries or organisers or even calendars. So when they gave a banquet, the host would do the invitations in two stages. Firstly, weeks or months ahead, he would say, “Would you like to come to my banquet?” and people would say yes please or no I can’t. Then, ON THE DAY, when the banquet was prepared, the host would send a message to those who had already accepted his invitation saying, today’s the day, the banquet is ready, come and eat!
So that’s why these excuses are so crazy. These are people who had ALREADY accepted the invitation who ON THE DAY are saying “I can’t be bothered to come!

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.’
In Jesus’s time NOBODY would buy a field without seeing it first!

19 “Another said, ‘I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’
Nobody would buy oxen without trying them out first!

20 “Still another said, ‘I have just got married, so I can’t come.’
In Jesus’s day, nobody would get married on short notice! When they accepted the invitation to the Banquet they would have been planning the wedding already!

Banquets
CIVIC DINNER –
SALTERS COMPANY University College – Main Hall of Durham Castle
11 / 13 courses

GOD is giving a banquet: picture of all the blessings of salvation
Wonderful food,
Wonderful companionship
Not just heaven
– not just pie in the sky when you die but cake on your plate while you wait! Eternal life which begins now and which even death cannot take away.

God’s banquet is the greatest joy anybody can experience. How crazy that people make excuses!

The first said, ‘I have just bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please excuse me.’
Field = possessions – lots of people put money and possessions before God!

Matthew 6:19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

19 “Another said, ‘I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’
Oxen = work – lots of people say they haven’t time for God because they are too busy with work!

Luke 12:16 And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man produced a good crop. 17 He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’
18 “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. 19 And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of good things laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.” ’
20 “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’
21 “This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself but is not rich towards God.”

20 “Still another said, ‘I have just got married, so I can’t come.’
For lots of people, their relationships are more important to them than God is!

Luke 8:19 Now Jesus’ mother and brothers came to see him, but they were not able to get near him because of the crowd. 20 Someone told him, “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to see you.”
21 He replied, “My mother and brothers are those who hear God’s word and put it into practice.”
GOD is more important than anybody else. Knowing God is more important than any other relationships!

Lots of people have excuses about why they don’t come to church.

I don’t like going to church because the priest is too loud, the choir can’t sing, and the man behind me keeps coughing!
I don’t want to go to church because my kids don’t want to go and I can’t find a babysitter for them.
God can hear me worship from home.
They don’t sing the songs I like.
The whole service caters to young people.
The whole service is designed for old people.
The sermon is too long.
I have nothing to wear.
Church Excuse: Veni, Vidi, NoN-Velcro. (I came, I Saw, I didn’t stick around.)

Hear God’s wonderful invitation to His banquet for EVERYBODY!
Isaiah 55 “Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters;
and you who have no money, come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost.
2 Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labour on what does not satisfy?
Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare.
3 Give ear and come to me; hear me, that your soul may live. ….
6 Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near.
7 Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts.
Let him turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on him,
and to our God, for he will freely pardon.

What a wonderful invitation God gives to US ALL!
your soul will delight in the richest of fare.
Let him turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on him,
and to our God, for he will freely pardon.

There are many people who like to accept the invitation God gives, but don’t turn up for the banquet! People who want God’s blessings but when the time comes can’t be bothered to turn up. People who like the idea of salvation but can’t be bothered to enjoy it! CRAZY!!

But God really wants people to enjoy the blessings of his salvation!

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.

Today for mother’s day many many women will have received invitations. To go for a special meal. To spend time with their children and their families. I am sure all those mothers will have accepted those invitations!

And I am very sure that when the time arrives for the meal, or somebody comes to collect them, these mothers won’t be making silly excuses. They wont be saying “I can’t be bothered to come!”

So what is our response to the invitation to God’s banquet? Are you coming to the party?

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