Saturday, October 1, 2011

Having a Big “But” Can Keep You Out Of Heaven

(This is in "preaching outline" form)
Luke 14:15-24 (ESV)
15 When one of those who reclined at table with him heard these things, he said to him, “Blessed is everyone who will eat bread in the kingdom of God!” 16 But he said to him, “A man once gave a great banquet and invited many. 17 And at the time for the banquet he sent his servant to say to those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’ 18 But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a field, and I must go out and see it. Please have me excused.’ 19 And another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to examine them. Please have me excused.’ 20 And another said, ‘I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.’ 21 So the servant came and reported these things to his master. Then the master of the house became angry and said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly to the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in the poor and crippled and blind and lame.’ 22 And the servant said, ‘Sir, what you commanded has been done, and still there is room.’ 23 And the master said to the servant, ‘Go out to the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled. 24 For I tell you, none of those men who were invited shall taste my banquet.’ ”

Here are a few of the “buts” that are all too common among us:

But Everybody Else Is Doing It (a rationale for sinful behavior) 1. God is a non-conformist.
Every great man of God that was used of God was a non-conformist. The Bible tells us, “to be not conformed to this world.” Rom. 12:2
2. Noah in his day was different.
3. Enoch did not conform to the world. He walked with God.
4. Abraham was a non-conformist. Everybody else went to Sodom and Gomorrah.

But Times Have Changed (meaning the Bible is outdated)
1. They sure have, but that doesn’t change God’s word.
2. Politics change – Society changes – Customs change – Fashion changes, but God’s Word does not change.
3. In these days of inflation the wages of sin is still the same.

But I Don't Believe Like You Do
Some say they were brought up in such and such a church or in another religion. It doesn’t matter how you were brought up. The Bible says “You must be born again.”

But It Doesn't Matter What You Believe As Long As You Are Sincere
1. Satan uses this excuse more than any other to send people to Hell.
2. You may have Faith but unless you faith is in Jesus Christ, you can’t be saved.

But I Don't Understand It (ignorance as an excuse)
1. Rom. 1:20 says they are without excuse. There is no excuse for not being saved.
2. We live in a realm of things we don’t understand. – Electricity – Life (1st birth) –But we believe it.

But I'm Going To Wait
The Bible is full of people who put it off, who said, “I’m gonna wait”.
1. The rich young ruler
2. The rich man in Torment
3. Felix
4. Agrippa

But I'm Just Too Bad
1. In Acts chapter 2 Peter saw some of the men who had crucified Jesus believe.
2. Paul the Apostle called himself “the chief of sinners.” I Tim. 1:15

If you were sitting on the railroad tracks and a train was coming. You could make one of three decisions:
1. You could totally ignore the train and live like it was not coming. – Until it hit you.
2. You could say, “It’s a long way off. I still have time. I’ll just wait until it gets closer." – Problem is, you are still sitting on the track!
3. You could heed the warning and get off the track and be saved.

Only one of these responses will save your life. Which one have you made?

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