Easter Sunday, my friend leans over the church pew and says, “I notice you’re alone. Do you have plans today?”
I shake my head.
“Then come to our home for ham dinner.” Her smile is warm like fresh-baked Hot Cross Buns.
“Thank you for the invite. Very thoughtful of you, but….”
“Come. You don’t need to bring a thing.”
“I’ll think about it.”
But a dozen excuses prevents me from accepting her kind invitation.
No doubt….my loss.
What excuses did people make when Jesus invited them to,“Follow me.”
- “Permit me to say goodbye to those at home.” Luke 9:61
- “He became very sad; for he was extremely rich.” Luke 18:23
- “This is a diffcult statement; who can listen to it.” John 6:60
- “They loved the approval of men….” John 12:43
- “He has a demon and is insane. Why do you listen to him?” John 10:20
Pride, unbelief, lovers of money, other people’s opinion, personal safety.
Are the excuses any different today?
What about when bad things happen to good people?
Is that a valid excuse to not follow Jesus?
Remember Job? God described Job as a “blameless, upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil.” And yet, Job suffered the loss of his children, property, health. What made it worse…
God Allowed it
Even so, Job didn’t use his miserable circumstances as an excuse to take his wife’s advice, “Curse God, and die.”
Instead he said, “Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity?”
Then he later added, “I know that my Redeemer lives, And at the last He will take His stand on the earth.” Job 19:25
“I know my Redeemer lives.”
Do you know Job’s Redeemer? Do you know this Man, Jesus who was …
- Delivered up by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God.
- Nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put to death.”
Do you know that…
- God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death.
- Since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power. (Acts 2:23, 24)
Jesus, our Redeemer lives. He’s seated in heaven at the right hand of God.
Some people will hear the Resurrection message on Easter and respond exactly like the men in Athens when they heard Paul declare that God raised Jesus from the dead. (Acts 17:30-32)
They will sneer!
They will find an excuse to turn down the invitation to believe in the name of Jesus, and follow Him.
But Praise God’s Holy name, there will be others who will hear the same message and say….
“We shall hear you again concerning this.”
Which person are you?