Summary: A Father’s Day message from the parable of the prodigal son.
SPECIAL DAY: FATHER’S DAY
TEXT: LUKE 15:11-32
TITLE: “THE LOVING FATHER”
INTRODUCTION: A. I like this little prayer for dads:
Mender of toys, leader of boys,
Changer of fuses, kisser of bruises,
Bless him, O Lord.
Mover of couches, soother of ouches,
Pounder of nails, teller of tales,
Reward him, O Lord.
Hanger of screens, counselor of teens,
Fixer of bikes, chastiser of tykes,
Help him, O Lord.
Raker of leaves, cleaner of eaves,
Dryer of dishes, fulfiller of wishes,
Bless him, O Lord.
B. Three boys were bragging about who had the better father:
The first boy says, “My Dad scribbles a few words on a piece of paper, he calls it a
poem, and they give him $100.”
The second boy says, “That’s nothing. My Dad scribbles a few words on a piece of
paper, he calls it a song, and they give him $1000.”
The third boy says, “My Dad is ever better than that. He scribbles a few words on a
piece of paper, calls it a sermon, and it takes 6 or 8 men just to collect all the money!”
1. My own dad taught me how to be a man: to work hard, to be honest, to do
everything you can the best you can, and to love your family
2. You are most blessed if you had a caring, loving father to bless your life
C. The model for all fathers is our Father in heaven
1. The passage we’re going to look at this morning has been known as the parable of
the prodigal son.
a. The bulk of the story is about the younger son who disrespectfully leaves his
b. Another portion of the story is about the older son who didn’t understand what
relationship to the father is all about.
c. The focus of the story is on the great and gracious love of the father
2. Wm. Barclay: “There is no chapter of the New Testament so well known and so
dearly loved as the 15th chapter of Luke’s gospel. It had been called the gospel in
the gospel; as if it contained the very distilled essence of the good news Jesus came
3. Let’s look at this well-known passage and see what Jesus wants us to understand
--Lk. 15:11-12 – Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons. The younger one said to his father,
’Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them.”
A. When the younger son asked for his share of his father’s estate, his request was legal but cruel
1. According to the Old Testament law, the younger son was entitled to 1/3 of his father’s estate and it
was acceptable for a man to divide his estate among his heir while still alive.
2. It was cruel because the son was basically saying: “I wish you were dead! I’m tired of you and want
to be free from your control over my life.”
a. The younger son’s attitude was marked by sinfulness and selfishness
b. He had decided he knew more about how to live life than his father did.
3. The father, lovingly and graciously allowed his son to choose his own path
a. Dad gave his son the required portion of his own life’s work
b. The younger son wanted what his father could give him but he did not want his father.
B. For the person who refuses to place his faith in God and give their life over to the Lordship of Jesus
Christ, that describes how they live their lives.
1. The lost person lives their life living as if God were dead
2. They say to God, “Give me!”
--They want what He can give them but do not want Him
--Lk. 15:13 – “Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and
there squandered his wealth in wild living.”
A. “Far country” represents anyplace that you’ve tried to go to get away from God
B. The younger son lived by worldly philosophies that say, “Enjoy today!” “Go for the gusto!” “Get all
you can while you can!” “Life’s a party so have a blast!”
--Lk. 15:14-17 – “After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he
began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his
fields to feed pigs. He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave
him anything. When he came to his senses, he said, ’How many of my father’s hired men have food to