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Summary: Characteristics of a gracious father as seen in the father of the prodigal son.

“A Gracious Father”

Text: Luke 15:11-30

Introduction: We would like to take a text that has seemingly been preached up one side and down the other, except we would like to examine the father of the prodigal instead of the son as most people do. As we examine this man we will quickly realize that he is a most gracious man indeed. There is not a lot said concerning this man in our text, but his actions speak louder than any words that we may read.

May God bless you as we consider a gracious father.

I. He is seen in our text as a Longsuffering father.

Although the word longsuffering is never actually used it is clear that he is a longsuffering or patient father. His patience is clearly seen in how he deals with both of his sons.

A. Consider his patience in dealing with his younger Prodigal son.

Notice how patiently he dealt with his persistent son.

B. Consider his patience in dealing with his older Petty son.

Notice how patient he was in dealing with his stubborn son.

II. He is seen in our text as a Longing father.

~ Luke 15:20 “And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.”

His father had been looking for him this whole time which implies that the father had a longing in his heart for his son.

A. He longed for the Presence of his son – he wanted his son to have his Relationship.

Even when the prodigal did not want to have anything to do with his father the father still wanted to have something to do with him.

B. He longed for the Prosperity of his son – he wanted his son to have his Riches.

The father knew full well that all his son would find in the far country was poverty and misery. I believe that the father had a great desire or longing in his heart to see his son prosper. The whole time that his son was wasting away in the far country the father longed for his son to come home and enjoy the riches that only he could offer him.

III. He is seen in our text as a Loving father.

~ Luke 15:20 “And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him”

A. The father’s love was Unquenchable.

The father never stopped loving his son while his son was in the far country.

B. The father’s love was Undeniable.

The father’s love was obvious. It was not just a spoken word, it was love in action.

IV. He is seen in our text as a Lavish father.

A. He met the need concerning his son’s Apparel.

~ Luke 15:22 “But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:”

B. He met the need concerning his son’s Appetite.

~ Luke 15:23 “And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:”

Conclusion: Maybe you have been in the far country seeking for something or someone to fulfill your life. The whole time you have been away the father has longed to have a relationship with you. He has never stopped loving you and he desires only the best for you. Will you arise and go to the father’s house? If you do you will be met with a gracious father with open, outstretched arms to embrace you.


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