Jesus had no illusions as to the general reception of His Kingdom. He knew that many, from the religious leaders of His own nation and people of the nation itself, to the distant Gentiles, would flout Him and His offer of eternal redemption. They would give the most trivial excuses, preferring for themselves the husks of the world. Webster defines the word excuse as “1. a plea or explanation given in defense of one’s conduct, 2. a release from obligation, duty, etc., 3. something that excuses; an extenuating or justifying factor, and 4. a pretended reason for conduct; a pretext.”
- Study the definitions of excuse. In our parable, all who were invited requested that they be excused. Which of the four definitions best applies?
- The man who had bought the field asked to be excused from the feast. What are some of the excuses offered today for not serving God? What is the basic reason behind all these excuses?
- One of the most commonly offered rationalizations for making an excuse in our day is the thought, I’ll do it later. What is the danger of procrastination regarding one’s eternal destiny?
- What was Adam’s excuse for having eaten the forbidden fruit (Genesis 3:12)? Did God excuse Adam? Why or why not?
- The man who had married a wife said, “I cannot come.” In reality, do you think he could have gone? Explain.
- If you were a pastor, how would you want a person to react when you asked him to do something in God’s service? With reference to this thought, explain 2 Corinthians 8:12.
- What often results when one asks to be excused from doing a specific task in God’s service?
- What is the feast to which all are invited (Revelation 19:9)? What awaits those who accept the invitation to God’s great feast?