“God Doesn't Play by Our Rules”             

Grace or un-Grace
Luke 15:1-3, 11-32

Starting in verse 17 we get to see a real turning point in this parable. “When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.’ So, he got up and went to his father.”

He came to his senses.

Temptation and sin do an awful thing to us.

It causes us to see the world incorrectly.

We lose our sense of reality.
We see ourselves and others in the wrong light.

We see the pleasures of the world in the wrong perspective. We just can’t see clearly when we are entangled by sin, BUT, the son came to his senses!

So, the boy returns to the house where he grew up, but he has been so blinded by the world of un-grace that he does not expect to be welcomed.

In verse 20 we see a beautiful picture of God.
“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.”

“…this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So, they began to celebrate.”

This is the Love that God has for each and every one of us.

What does the father in the parable mean when he says, “this son of mine was dead…”?

Weren’t all of us dead at one time?  In this parable, death does not mean physical death.

Look at what Paul says to the Christians in Ephesians Chapter 2: “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world."

All of us also lived among them at one time…But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead…it is by grace you have been saved.”

Our God is like a Lovesick Father, who does not hold our sins against us, but throws a party when we come to Him for salvation and forgiveness!  And while we are still a long way off, He runs to us!

“Now the tax collectors and ‘sinners’ were all gathering around to hear [Jesus]. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, ‘This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.”

So, Jesus told them this parable in order to let them know what God is really about. But did the Pharisees and the teachers of the law get it?    Do we get it?

We’ll conclude tomorrow.

Message For The Day