Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Things You Wouldn't Think Exclude You from Heaven

 We’ll praise Jesus today, everyone. I wanted to make a simple message on something that will keep us out of heaven, but that a lot of us haven't thought of. When we think of being excluded from heaven, we think of blatant rebellion against God, things like drugs and alcohol, cheating on your wife, murder, all the lusts of the flesh that we know are evil, all the things that are contrary to the Holy Spirit, and things that the Apostle Paul lines up. In one of the Apostle Paul's letters, he talks about the fruit of the Spirit being love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. But then on the other hand, you have all these things that are the fruits of the flesh that lead to hell, you know, lying, cheating, hatred, murder, envy, selfishness, all of those things that we know lead to hell. But there is something else that Jesus talks about quite frequently that we also need to pay attention to, because even if you're not sinning in this way, this one thing can still keep you out of the Kingdom of God. So what is it? We're going to read the parable that Jesus spoke about this, and I think that you'll understand as we read this parable what Jesus is talking about. This is found in Luke chapter 14.

Jesus said,  “A certain man gave a great supper and invited many, 17and sent his servant at supper time to say to those who were invited, ‘Come, for all things are now ready.’ 18But they all with one accord began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a piece of ground, and I must go and see it. I ask you to have me excused.’

So the question here is, is it evil to buy a piece of land? How many of us have bought a house, or rented an apartment, or bought a new property? But that is an excuse that this person's making.

19And another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I am going to test them. I ask you to have me excused.’

So how many of us have bought a vehicle, or went out and bought a tractor? How many of us are farmers, or take care of the land? Maybe you bought a cow, a horse, you bought something, and it was an excuse to go out and use that piece of machinery, because after all it was a good cause, you're taking care of your family and others, and it's for your work anyway. So the first guy bought a piece of land, please excuse me. The next guy bought a yoke of oxen, please excuse me.

20Still another said, ‘I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.’

So another thing that sounds good, you're getting married, so please excuse me. How many of us have been in a relationship, or gotten married, and that also distracted us from doing God's work? So this person also made the same excuse,  I'm married, I can't come.

21So that servant came and reported these things to his master. Then the master of the house, being angry, said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in here the poor and the maimed and the lame and the blind.’ 22And the servant said, ‘Master, it is done as you commanded, and still there is room.’ 23Then the master said to the servant, ‘Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled. 24For I say to you that none of those men who were invited shall taste my supper.’ ” 

That is a scary thing that God is saying, because these people that are excluded from His Kingdom, that don't get to see the wedding supper, they're not excluded for looking at pornography or getting drunk, they're not excluded for murder or lying or cheating on their wife, none of those big sins that we think of, their sin that kept them out of the Kingdom of God was their wife getting married, paying attention to their wife, but not doing the work, not coming into the wedding supper of the Lamb. They bought something for their work, to till the field, they bought a tractor, they bought a new vehicle, they bought land, and all those things in the world seem good. But these are the things that are keeping many people out of the Kingdom of God, and the scary thing is that God says, all those people that were invited, yet they fell into the trap of those things and were not fruitful, none of them were invited to actually come into the wedding supper. This represents Christians who were invited by God to come in and to dine with Him and to eat His food, yet they always made excuses, they always said, “I'll serve you later God, first let me go to college, first let me get a job, first let me get married, first let me buy a car, first let me buy this property.” And they grew up, they did get married, and God was patient with them, they bought a house, God was patient with them, but they continued to say, “I'll serve you later God, I'll be a testimony for you later God.” And they went their whole life putting God in the back of their mind, and putting off God, they would say, “well let me serve you once my children are grown”, and then they would say, “well actually God, let me serve you after my grandchildren are grown, so they continue to make excuses about their wife, their property, their house, their job”, and all of these things seem good, it's not what you consider to be sin. But this is what Jesus says will eliminate people from the Kingdom of God, He says that none of those who are invited that do this will enter into His Kingdom.

This is scary guys, because this means that we have to go above and beyond just stopping on sin, we have to be fruitful, and not let these things of life choke us out. Remember the four soils, within these four soils, sin of course choked people out, but also the worries of the world, the desire of riches, all the pleasures of life, these also choke people out, especially Christians. So if we want to enter into the Kingdom of God, we have to be producing good fruit, which means we're praying and asking Jesus how to best serve Him, how to use all of our resources to glorify Him, and not just putting God off, or saying, we’ll do your work later, because I've entered into this marriage, so I need to take care of my wife first, I can't serve you God, or I have this work, my new business, so I can't serve the Lord. We need to make sure that we're really seeking first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness.

I also need to keep myself in check, you need to keep yourself in check, none of us are above the words of Jesus. We need to make sure that we are listening to what Jesus said and putting it into practice. Are we living by the Word of God, are we eating Jesus' flesh and drinking His blood like He has asked us to do? Or are we like the Christians that go out and they're always making excuses why they can't follow God, why they can't preach the gospel, why they can't tell their children about Jesus, why they can't be separate from the world? Are we the Lord's children bearing good fruit daily and hourly, or are we about to be cut off because we're so wound up in the world with things that look good that were unfruitful for the Kingdom of God? May the grace of Jesus be with you.