Summary: Why Father was silent when he heard his younger SON demanded dividends? Why Father parted his property with his younger son knowing that he is going to leave him and live according to his plan? These questions are related to the foreknowledge of God.
Theme: Compassionate Father
Text: Luke 15:11-32
The Lord is good! His love endures forever!!
I greet you all in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. It is an immense joy for us to meditate the Word of God Sundays after Sundays. The topic for this Sunday meditation is “A Compassionate Father” based on the Gospel of Luke 15:11-32. “HAPPY FATHERS’ DAY” to all Fathers.
Gospel writers present Jesus Christ as the BEST TEACHER ever lived on the earth. Jesus communicated the credible insights of the Kingdom of God using Parables and stories for quick understanding and easing gripping. Jesus Christ explained the valuable and amazing Love and Compassion of God through many Parables. This parable was traditionally titled as ‘Parable of the Prodigal Son’ or ‘Parable of the Lost Son’. But, I would like to title it as ‘A Compassionate Father.’
This parable is the continuation of the other two parables narrated by Jesus Christ in this chapter. The first one talks about the loss of one Lamb out of 100 (Luke 14:3-7), the second one talks about the loss of one silver coin out of 10 (Luke 15:8-10), this parable talks about the loss of one Son out of two. The loss of a Lamb was wretched, the loss of a Coin was impoverishment, but the loss of a Son is an everlasting separation. In these parables, values are added one after the other in the ascending order according to ancient traditions, the parables begin with a lamb, progress to a Silver coin and finally ends with a SON.
Jesus narrated these three Parables of losses and regains; in the first Parable Shepherd went out and found the Lost Lamb, in the second parable the woman searches in her own house and found her lost Coin. Then in the last Parable, the Lost Son had responded to the available resources and seized the opportunity to reach his Father.
Let us mediate the following three characteristics from this Parable:
1. A Compassionate and Reaching Father
2. A Careless but Repented Younger Son
3. A Complacent and Revolted Older Son
We have to observe a few words in this Parable as noteworthy for our spiritual life: v.13 – squandered with loose living. V.17- when he came to his senses. V.20 ran, felt compassion, embraced and kissed him. V.24 – dead and alive, lost and found. V.32 dead and has begun to live, lost has been found.
1. A COMPASSIONATE AND REACHING FATHER
Jesus talked about three men in this parable – Father, Older Son and the Younger Son. The Older Son seemed to be very silent, obedient and doing the work of his father. The younger son was portrayed as disobedient, disrespectful for his father’s love and also the intrinsic value of his older brother.
The father in this parable pictured as a very loving, deeply compassionate father (Luke 15:20) with respecter of no persons. The father in this parable had honoured the request of his younger son. He had seen helplessly and painfully the rebellion of his younger Son departing from him one fine day. For many days, father waited patiently and compassionately for his lost Son to return home. The eyes of the father were kept looking day and night upon the way his son left home.
One day, his lost Son returned home with DISFIGURED FORM. Yet, the father recognised him even when he saw his lost son afar off, he ran to him with love and compassion; he hugged and embraced him, and he brought him home and celebrated the return of his lost son. He uttered a very excellent way: ‘for the Son of mine has come, he was dead and come to life again; he was lost and has been found’ (Luke 15:24).
Jesus Christ told this story not only to pinpoint the Love and Compassion of God but also the value of each soul. Jesus taught the TRUTH that all those who live in Sin are dead. All those are without Christ is dead. God is always waiting for the human race to come back to their original state of life. His faithfulness and mercy are fresh and new every morning. His outstretched arms are unfolded to receive us with gladness and joy.
Unbelieving and rational Readers and hearers ask the following questions: Why Father was silent when he heard his younger SON demanded dividend? Why Father parted his property with his younger son knowing that he is going to leave him and live according to his plan? These questions are questions related to the foreknowledge of God.
One thing, we must understand through this Parable:
God allows us to freely exercise our freewill according to our intelligentsia and have our experimental with it. Father did not play the role of a taskmaster or a ruler. He lets his Son go. The younger Son utilised the freedom to plan his own life and its course without consulting his Father. He never sought the advice and counsel of his Father. He behaved rough and rude. But Father allowed him to exercise his freedom to the end. We worship a God who gave us his image and likeness as well as freewill.