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October 8, 2013

The Father’s Heart

Throughout scripture we’re told we serve a perfect and holy God but sometimes we overlook the fact that he loves to bless his children. In Matthew 7:11 Jesus said, “If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!”

In the parable of The Prodigal son, once the son woke up and realized that his dad had hired workers who were better off than he, suddenly his situation became clear. So, he plans a little speech. He thinks there is no way his dad will take him back because he’s hurt him so deeply. But, if he goes back and begs him, maybe he’ll take him on as a hired worker and at least he would get something to eat, so he begins walking home. Although he had a clear picture of his own condition, he had no clarity at all about the character of his father.

That’s what makes this next verse so powerful. The father totally shocks his son with his reaction. In Luke 15:20 it says, “So he got up and went to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.” Underline the phrase he ran to his son. It’s the only time in Scripture where God runs. Now, notice the contrast between when the son left home and when he returns. When he left home, he was running away as fast as he could, he was proud and rebellious. When he returned home, he was walking and he had lost everything including his pride. The son was walking, but it was the father who now ran to him. The son said, “Dad, I’m so sorry. Please forgive me. I know you can never take me back, but at least take me on as a hired hand.” The father held him and hugged him and kissed him and said, “You’re my child. I don’t care where you’ve been or what you’ve done. You’re my child. Welcome home.” This is a true picture of our perfect, loving, Heavenly Father.