NIV Once-A-Day Walk With Jesus Devotional

Excuses: Obstacles to the Gates of Heaven

Ben Franklin was right. There has seldom been a man good at making excuses who was good at anything else.

Good intentions. Not enough time. Too many responsibilities. The bottom line in each case is the same: The job just doesn’t get done.

The revivalist Charles Finney offers this warning about the danger of coming to God with excuses rather than repentance.

Walk With Charles Finney
“It seems to be a law of human nature that when a person is accused of wrong, either by the conscience or any other agent, he must either confess or justify.

“This is the reason why people make so many excuses and why they have so great a variety.

“But nothing can be more grievous in God’s sight than excuses made by those who know they are utterly false.

“Sinners don’t need their excuses. God does not ask for even one. He does not require you to justify yourself — ​not at all.

“I can remember the year I lived on excuses and found them to be obstacles in the way of my conversion. As soon as I let these go completely, I found the gate of God’s mercy wide open.

“And so, sinner, will you.”

Walk Closer to God
As you read Jesus’ parables and Mr. Finney’s words, do you grow uncomfortable?

That’s God’s way of demolishing your carefully constructed refuge of excuses in order to expose your heart to the truth.

Someday you will face up to your excuses — ​either in judgment or repentance. God will see to that.

But why wait? Excuses can be deadly.

“But God, you don’t understand . . .”

Indeed, he does. And once you realize that, you can’t ignore him any longer.