Monday, April 16, 2012

Do We Really Know Our Father

How well do we know our Father in heaven? We say we know Him, but are we like the story with the prodigal son?

We remember the story of the prodigal son, where he wanted his inheritance so he could run off and live life the way he thought he wanted to. But then when he gets out in the world and spends all of his inheritance he ends up so poor, he is eating with the pigs. So he decides to return home and his father welcomes him with open arms, a loving heart, and without condemnation.

Luke 15 v 21-22...And the son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight, and am no longer worthy to be called your son.' But the father said to his servants, 'Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet.'....

It goes on to say they killed a fatted calf and had a big party welcoming his son home. The father said, my son was lost but now he is found. Let's have a party.

Now another important part of this story is the other son. We sometimes concentrate so much on the prodigal son, that we miss the other point here. The older son who stayed at home, gets so upset when his father throws a party for his brother, because he is thinking, how can you throw a party for such an irresponsible person. He squandered all of your money and then runs out and wants to come home and you reward him. He is saying in the story, I have been here with you always and worked hard for you and yet you have never killed a calf for me so that I may have a party with my friends. I have stayed here and obeyed your every command.

Here is the important thing to get from this part of the story. The older brother was trying to live by law and not love. He was trying to do all that he could to make sure he kept his inheritance. He didn't really know his father's heart. He didn't realize that his father loved him no matter what, and all that he had was his to start with. It was his because of his father's love for him, not because he earned it in any way.

Luke 15 v 31....And he said to him, 'Son, you are always with me, and all that I have is yours."...

This is a story of Jesus' love for us. He is always with us, He loves us unconditionally, and we can not do anything to earn His grace and forgiveness. His forgiveness is there when we come to Him. His arms are opened wide waiting for us to return to Him. AMEN!

Romans 8 v 1...There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit....

Another example is the story of the talents. A man left his servants with his goods while he was gone. One he gave five talents, another two, and another one. The story tells us the one with five invested and made five more to give back to his master, the one with two did the same, but the one with one talent dug a hole and hid his talent.

This story is yet again showing us where the guy with the one talent did not have a good opinion of who his master was. This story is about knowing who the Lord is. This guy says, 'Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown. So I hid your talent, look here is what is yours', and gives Him back one talent.

First of all, He didn't know the Lord at all. Never was Jesus a hard man. Once again the servant did not really know his Master.

We could even use the story of Mary and Martha. When Jesus came to visit, and Martha was running around like a chicken with her head cut off trying to fix and make everything look just right and taste just right, while Mary was sitting at Jesus feet resting in His teaching. When Martha complained and told Jesus to tell Mary to help her, He told her Mary had chosen the good part which would not be taken away from her.

You see while Martha was busy working trying to earn His favor, Mary was spending time getting to know her Lord on a more personal basis.

Luke 10 v 40-42...But Martha was distracted with much serving,and she approached Him and said, "Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me." And Jesus answered and said to her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her."....

You see Martha did not really know her Lord. She thought that He would be more concerned with the way everything looked and how well the dinner went instead He is more concerned with our hearts. He would rather that we know Him and that we rest in Him and let Him carry our burdens.

Now I ask you again, How well do we know our Father? What opinion do we have of Him? Do we see Him for the loving, caring Father that He is?

He loves us so much and without condemnation. Rest in Him. Get to know Him on a personal basis. How?


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