The Father's Joy

Chester Droog

READ : Luke 15:11-31

Our third parable in the 15th chapter of the gospel of Luke, like the other two, has joy as its theme. In one of the best known parables, Jesus describes the Father’s joy when a lost son or daughter turns from sin and accepts forgiveness through Jesus Christ.

The parable makes it clear that it is a deep, heartfelt joy. It arises out of the return of a much loved son who has come home after years of separation and sin. It is an unashamed joy. The son has not yet reached the gate to the village where the elders sit, when the father throws his arms around him, kisses him and welcomes him back. The father might well have bowed his head in shame, but no, he rejoices in the return of the son. It’s a restored joy. The servant is ordered to clothe the son with the best robe in the house, put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. The prodigal is clearly restored to the position of a son. It’s a shared joy. “Bring the fatted calf . . . let’s have a feast and celebrate.” There is no greater cause for rejoicing than when a sinner turns to Christ.

In all of this we have a picture of the joy of our heavenly Father when sinners come to themselves, repent of their sins and seek forgiveness through Jesus Christ.

PRAYER

Father, give me a glimpse of heaven’s greatest joy that I too may rejoice. In Jesus’ name. Amen.