Updated: Sep 17, 2021
The last 2 weeks we heard:
David: What is God Really Like?
Geoff: Who is Our Father?
Let’s look at some familiar scriptures:
Heb. 1:1 God, who in ancient days spoke to our forefathers in many distinct messages and by various methods through the Prophets,
Heb. 1:2 has at the end of these days spoken to us through a Son, who is the pre-destined Lord of the universe, and through whom He made the Ages.
Heb. 1:3 He brightly reflects God’s glory and is the exact representation of His being, and upholds the universe by His all-powerful word. After securing man’s purification from sin He took His seat at the right hand of the Majesty on high, (Weymouth)
What is God really like? Who is our Father?
Jesus showed us the Father
NOTE: there’s a contrast in verse 1 - God spoke in ancient days by various methods through the prophets
TODAY: He is speaking to us through His Son - we know the Father by studying the Son - 1. while He walked on the Earth - 2. By RECEIVING the SON - 3. by KNOWING what the Son did for us..
It’s IMPORTANT to know where to look to discover who God really is:
Jesus is the place to look
Heb. 1:3 He is the exact representation of His being (Weymouth), the true image of his substance (BBE), and is stamped with God’s nature (MSG), the exact imprint of his nature (ESV), and expresses the very character of God (NLT), and is like him in every way (CEV), the exact representation of His nature (NAS)…
He is the TRUE and EXACT - IMAGE, NATURE, CHARACTER of the Father
This means that God’s image, His nature, His character, His essence, His substance, His imprint, His likeness was JESUS!
Def. Character: one of the attributes or features that make up and distinguish an individual.
Sample Sentence: “This is a side of her character that few people have seen.”
In the story of the prodigal: (Waiting Father)
The Jewish people listening to Jesus were introduced to a Father they previously didn’t know
This is a side of God’s character that they previously had not known
Jesus was introducing the New Covenant - it was a transitioning and the guidelines were VERY different
Did God change? No - here is what changed:
2 Cor. 5:19 For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation. (NLT)
The sin problem needed fixed
Jesus came to fix it - that changed the covenants
Stoning people for some sins in the Old - to forgiving those in the New
The law served it’s purpose
Grace is serving it’s purpose
Today: That’s Radically Different
Let’s pick up and read in Luke:
Luke 15:11 To illustrate the point further, Jesus told them this story… (NLT)
Q: What point does Jesus want to further illustrate?
Luke 15:10 In the same way, there is joy in the presence of God’s angels when even one sinner repents.” (NLT)
Jesus is making a point that God REALLY cares about sinners coming back home
Here is a bullet point summary of Luke 15:
Tax collectors and sinners came to Jesus
This made the Pharisees upset
Jesus then told these stories:
A shepherd going after one sheep
The shepherd is the pursuer of the lost sheep
The shepherd calls friends and rejoices when he finds the lost sheep
A woman who loses one of ten silver coins
The lady is the pursuer of the lost coin
The lady calls friends and rejoices when she finds the lost coin
The difference is extreme, for example in the Old Covenant you were punished for wrong doing, whereas in the New Covenant you are pursued in order to come back to the Father.
The arrival of a lost one coming home calls for celebration. No lingering guilt or condemnation.
Luke 15:11 To illustrate the point further, Jesus told them this story: “A man had two sons.
Luke 15:12 The younger son told his father, ‘I want my share of your estate now before you die.’ So his father agreed to divide his wealth between his sons.
Luke 15:13 A few days later this younger son packed all his belongings and moved to a distant land, and there he wasted all his money in wild living.
Luke 15:14 About the time his money ran out, a great famine swept over the land, and he began to starve.
Luke 15:15 He persuaded a local farmer to hire him, and the man sent him into his fields to feed the pigs.
Luke 15:16 The young man became so hungry that even the pods he was feeding the pigs looked good to him. But no one gave him anything.
Luke 15:17 When he finally came to his senses, he said to himself, ‘At home even the hired servants have food enough to spare, and here I am dying of hunger!
Luke 15:18 I will go home to my father and say, “Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you,
Luke 15:19 and I am no longer worthy of being called your son. Please take me on as a hired servant.”’
Luke 15:20 “So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him.
This is why we could say the “waiting father” or the pursuing father”
Luke 15:21 His son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, and I am no longer worthy of being called your son.
Here is what we learned so far from the story Jesus told about a Father:
One: The Father Allowed the Son to Go His Way