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Jesus' View of the Father B

Grace To You / John MacArthur
The Truth Network Radio
March 17, 2022 4:00 am

Jesus' View of the Father B

Grace To You / John MacArthur

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March 17, 2022 4:00 am

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God is love embraces and carries us along. That's the kind of love he hasn't sold. He was a long way off. He soon I didn't wait for a speech he didn't say what I want to say when he gets the runner after man is the initiator note to truly enjoy God you must understand his love.

What is God's love like and how do you know if he loves you.

Is it the size of your bank account or the state of your health or the square footage of your house. John gives you a practical vision of what the love of God looks like.

As he explains the parable of the prodigal son. What does this popular passage reveal about God's character and what about his love for you find out. Now here's John MacArthur with today's message. I believe without a doubt this is the single greatest statement on the character of God, and it's in Luke 15, Luke 15. Verse 11 and he said, a certain man had two sons in the younger of them said to his father. Father give me the portion of goods that follow community divided under them is living and not many days after that, the younger son gathered all together and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living. And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in Atlanta began to be in want anyone enjoying himself to a citizen of that country and sentimentalist fields to feed swine and he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat but no man gave unto him.

And when he came to himself. He said many of my father's hired servants have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger. I will arise and go to my father and will Sandy and father. I have sent against heaven and before the no more worthy to be called thy son make me as one of thy hired servants. And he arose and came to his father when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him, and the sun set on him. Father, who I have sinned against heaven and in thy sight, and no more worthy to be called thy son but the father said to his servants, bring forth the best robe and put it on him and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet and bring the fatted calf and kill it and let us eat and be merry for this my son was dead and is alive again. He was lost and is found. And they began to be merry. I was older son was in the field and as he came and drew near the house. He heard music and dancing any call or the servants and asked what these things meant and he said in him. My brother's comment and I father has killed the fatted calf, because he hath received him safe and sound was angry and wouldn't go in therefore came his father out and entreated him and he answering said to his father. These many years do I serve the neither transgressed I at any time thy commandment. And yet thou never gavest me a kid that I might make merry with my friends. But as soon as this thy son was, who hath devoured thy living with harlots, thou has killed for him the fatted calf. He said in him soon. Thou art ever with me and all that I have is thine. It was fitting that we should make Mary and be glad for this thy brother was dead and is alive again and was lost and is found. What a great story.

Listen people, that is not the story of the lost son that is the story of a loving father and listen to me, a loving father who loved to sign under two different conditions with the same love the very same love. Look at the story again verse 11, a certain man at two sons, the younger of them said to his father, give me the portion of goods. It falls to me unless younger son had a right to part of the inheritance. The older son got two thirds and if there were only two that would mean 1/3 of the inheritance was in, but it was always the case that he waited till his father died and then received 1/3 of the estate, but he wants and he wants it now which means the father in responding to his request would have to literally liquidate his estate and converted into enough cash to give the sun what he asked for in the sun got what he asked for the end of verse 12 he divided under them is living. He liquidated everything he hadn't put it in the care of his sons, he bestowed upon them all that he possessed verse 13. Not many days after that, the younger son gathered all together, took his journey into a far country, and wasted his substance with also toss dissipation.

The word literally means wastefulness access while extravagance squandering it doesn't tell us what he did his dirty minded brother assumed that he wasted on the harlots but he didn't have that information that was just a slanderous state. We don't know what he did with, but he ruined himself by wasting it all and then he faced a double disaster. Verse 14 he had spent everything in there arose a mighty famine in the land and he began to be in want isn't bad enough that he wasted his substance, but now there's a famine in the land food is at a premium he can't get a job and nobody's going to give them anything is out of money and the famine is hit. Food is scarce food is high price. Nobody's giving it away and nobody's offering jobs because there's no money for anything but food.

Verse 15 he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country and he sentimentalist fields to feed swine Jew feeding pigs when you can't get any lower than that how degrading Leviticus 11 seven says they were unclean. What's he doing feeding them.

The old saying among the Jews was made a curse. Come upon the man who cares for swine.

That's how low it is that he is stooped, he would've fain filled his belly.

Verse 16 says with the husks literally the word is caribou pods he would've filled his belly with the caribou pods that were the food for the pigs but nobody would give him the pig food because you could need a human so you fed a pig because you could eat a pig. Humans drained the resources pigs were the resources pigs are more valuable than people so nobody gave him anything. Verse 17 he came to himself. Disillusionment began to set in, and he finally came to his senses and he began to reason. How many of my father's hired servants have bread enough and to spare, and I am perishing with hunger.

By the way, the word hired servant is most interesting. It doesn't mean a household slave. It doesn't mean a contracted servant. It means a day laborer. He says even the people passing down the road that my father hire for one days work have food to eat. Even the day laborers, even the guys just took on for the spare days.

Verse 18 I will arise and go to my father and say to him when he rehearses his little speech, father, I've sinned against heaven and before the end of no more worthy to be called thy son make me as one of thy day laborers just treat me like a guy looks on for the day so I have something to eat. Some people said that he had an ill advised motive because his motive was food but listen, it went much deeper than that. He didn't just go with the plan to say I'm hungry. Went with a plan to say I have what I've seen. I believe it's a classic confession. I believe he really express the sorrow in his heart, and it wasn't the sorrow that he lost his fortune and it wasn't the sorrow they didn't have any food he wasn't sorrowful for what he lost he was sorrowful for what he had done and that's classic confession when you really sorry that you got caught lawyer only sorry that your resources are gone. That's not true repentance when you're sorry because you sinned against heaven, the Jewish euphemism for God because they wouldn't speak his name when you've sinned against God in your sorry that's classic confession.

So he comes to his father. Verse 20 and he arose and came to his father why love that Jesus didn't say he went to his home. He returned to his farm. He came to his village.

He says he went to his what father it was the relationship Jesus was emphasizing that the location and what happened I love this. Here's the main character in the story when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed you know what happened. The sunset and father have sinned against heaven and eyesight. No more worthy to be called thy son and before I could even say make me as one of your day laborers. The father set the party and most little gods like that's what counseling was. Verse 22. The father said to his servants will bring the best robe and put it on him and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet and bring the fatted calf and kill it. Let's even be married for this my son was dead and is alive again. He was lost, but he's finally began to be married. God's attitude that's God's attitude just to prove it to you look back. Verse eight chapter 51 woman having 10 pieces of silver loses one piece doesn't she light a lamp and sweep the house and seek diligently as you find it when she found she calls her friends and her neighbors together, saying, rejoice with me, for I found the fees which I lost phrases. Likewise, I say and you there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over what one sinner that repents to see that's just another illustration of the father's July when a sinner, see Thomas. The story verse 24 wind it up and I want you to get these points not list as I read the story this week. It dawned on me like a bull out of the sky, but the same five truths I saw in John five are illustrated right here that Jesus is giving here the illustration for the theological statement of John five. What was the first great truth that Jesus uttered in John five. The father is what one with his son. The father is one with his son. But in verse 19 he says I'm no more worthy to be called thy son make me as one of thy hired servants. That's going to be my speech.

I'm going just ask to be a servant, but he gets there. And in verse 21 before he can even get it out of his mouth. The father embraces him and loves him and get the fees going and says this my son verse 24 father sees the relationship restored. He sees his dead son alive. His lost son found so does Jesus say in John 14.

I go to prepare a place for you because in my father's house are many dwelling places. It doesn't say mansions in the Greek heaven is in a bunch of mansions down the street for blocks over there and six to the right is yours. It says this in my father's house are many rooms. I'm not live in six blocks to the right and down the block on women in the father's house on one of his family.

That's the kind of God. I have he's one with his sons tremendous truth.

Secondly, the father loves his son verse 20 but when he was yet a great way off, his father saw and how you think he saw no lights on just what the father been doing since he went away what Watson for Watson, the father saw the long way off, and he knew he was assigned. How do you know I'll tell you how father knows what his son walks like I can look into crowd pick up my kids.

Just the weather, had Bob's way to move your feet father loves the son he saw him. He's always the initiator always the initiator he goes to find the sun is out there scanning the role God is the initiator God is doing a lot of embraces and carries us along. That's the kind of love he has and so when he was a long way off.

He so they didn't wait for a speech he didn't say what is going to say when he gets going to handle… Wait for speech. He has compassion was moved with pity in his bowels that the Greek says his stomach begin to turn in the emotion turnover in his stomach and he was feeling deeply the love of his son and he rattled man that he wisely ran because God is always the runner after man is always the initiator of salvation. The Bible says he fell on his neck, passionate embrace and then it says he kissed imminent uses the term in the Greek.

That means he kissed him repeatedly and fervently just kissed him and kept on kissing him and kissing him kiss. That's God. See that's God.

People who settle Lincoln oatmeal dance and all you know I've seen in my life and she said I'm so afraid God won't accept me, not the God that Jesus talked about you, except you were in fact he'll run embrace you before you utter a word list of people. That's what God's light. He makes his children, one with him and he loves his children was the third thing I saw here the same as Jesus told talked about in John five father blesses his children, and even if your parents and sinner who deserves nothing and you come back. What does he say verse 22 bring the best robe and put it on him shoes on his feet. Why the best robe listen to me functional at the best robe meant that was the sign of belonging in the family when you are the role of the family room that was your identity. He's one of us shoes on his feet. What is that slaves went barefoot. Three men wore shoes, three men wear shoes slaves go barefoot you put on your shoes, I've set you free your assignment noticeably blessed and then he called for the fatted calf and he called for a feast and he called for merriment and they sang in a made music and they celebrated and they danced the father blesses his son stay with the boy didn't deserve it. That's not the point. It's the nature of the father. That is the issue.

If God gave us what we deserve, we could pack up the world and just forget it. Fourthly, he gave authority to his son. You'll notice in verse 22. Very quickly he says put a ring on his hand. This is a signet ring and symbolizes family authority when anything was done officially by the family was sealed in the signet ring of the family was impressed in the steel and that was authority. If you had that ring you could literally sign with the seal of the family and just as God committed all authority to the sun so marvelously.

When you become a child of God does God commit his authority to you. You can act in his behalf, asked one after the spirit is come upon you, you shall be my witnesses. You will act in my behalf.

Whoever sins you remit shall be remitted. Whoever sins you retain shall be rotated here are the keys to the kingdom go to your my emissaries. You are an ambassador of Jesus Christ. Second Corinthians 511.

Think of it, God has made us one with him.

God has loved us. God has blessed us. God has given us authority to act in his behalf in the world and even put his son so that we may manifest Christ finally we said the John five Jesus said God honored his son and surely we see that here.

He said at the end of verse 23. Let us eat and be merry. He commanded everybody to celebrate everybody to honor that son that had been dead and was now alive stage on which the story really saying its context was. Don't miss this, Jesus is talking to the Jew covenant wise. They were all sons of God according to the Abraham a covenant they were children of God children by circumcision children physically, but some of them were wayward sons who had gone off and flirted with other gods and committed their spiritual adulteries. They had sinned against God, they had been the prodigal's, but when they came back to God. He embraced love you and I in the same way are children of God. All of us in terms of creation in terms of the physical. We've all been created by God. We all come under the umbrella of his Providence.

What summer wayward sons and when those wayward sons come back in loving concern. Repentance embraces but there's another alternative to. That's the second son we close with this, just briefly now his elder son was in the field and as he came and drew near the house. He heard music and dancing, and he called one of the servants and asked what these things meant. Now listen get the picture.

This is the sun that never went anywhere. You know, this is the Pharisees. They own around the temple all tie down around God's skirts, as it were, all the time. They were always involved in the religious.they never drifted away.

They kept the letter of the law. Look what it says, down there in verse 29. These many years of I serve the I have never transgressed your commandments and you never gave me any feast. No one because you never knew you were a sinner so you have your religious men embraced in the religious man turned away would prove they prove the falseness of their religion, their whole attitude shows that their obedience was out of a grim duty not love the attitude of an utter lack of sympathy.

They treat their brother in such a horrible way self-righteous. Why is my father doing this for now. He's a sinner over the story, the publican sinner, where in the corner. Will God be merciful to me sooner Pharisees that I thank you and I'm not like this. 30 sinner is the older brother out of the father treat the older brother. I love this verse 31.

He said son so the Pharisees were within the purview of the Abraham a covenant they had received the physical seed of Abraham. They were the received recipients of the covenants and the adoptions and the promises is Romans 945 tell they had all their thesis on your with me and all that I have is yours. It's all yours for the taking and you always hung around your order loving father he loves even the legalist he loves. Even the Pharisee, but it was so fitting that we should make Mary and be glad for this.

Your brother was dead is a lie was lost and found, was you see the love of God or to a kind of father means loved so much.

The one who came back we love no less the one who didn't even know he stayed around the religious things you never knew God and never tapped his resource. The story never ends never tells what happens with older brother know why because when Jesus preached this message. The story had been told we know how it ended.

The Pharisees cried for his blood.

And if the story had run full course. The elder brother would've turned his back on his father. What is God like you know what he's like he's like you can see in the worst sinner vilest sinner, something glorious and magnificent and he wants to set his affection on it make it one of them some love bless their authority to an honor that individual. No wonder Jesus said, have faith in God. If that's the kind of God we can have faith in spirit. Thank you father thank you Joy that's in our hearts because you ran one day through your arms around us when we were working. We didn't deserve it.

She loved us anyway thank you for being such a father to us that you are to Jesus Christ, making this one with you loving us. Blessings, giving us authority and honor, praising Jesus you been listening to John MacArthur, Chancellor of the Masters University in seminary as he shows you the incredible love of God, a love that the Lord has for you. If you follow the Lord Jesus. Today's lesson is part of John's current study on grace to you titled enjoying God. John, this is always been one of my favorite sermons that I've ever heard from you.

The parable of the lost son and it's good to be reminded, as you explained. This story is not so much about the rebellious son.

It's really about the loving father and this really holds a memorable place in your ministry. In fact the only time I recall hearing an audible gasp from the congregation was when you preached on this parable yet and that's exactly right. The parable clearly is about the father because he is the hero in the parable. I think people know generally about the story of the prodigal son. Some people think it's a story illustrating bad parenting and how to fix your parenting really has nothing to do that, but it is one of the greatest of all the parables and it particularly brings honor to our Lord Jesus Christ because he is the loving father in the parable, who forgives the repentance son, the book that I wrote on this called the prodigal son was previously titled a tale of two sons, and it is a tale of two sons, but the title of didn't really identify with the familiar story so we changed to the prodigal son. It's the story of the prodigal that holds richer truth then most people would ever realize everybody knows the story, but what they don't seem to understand is this is one of the greatest of all biblical revelations on salvation on forgiveness on redemption and it's about the father, and two kinds of sinners, the kind that will be forgiven and redeemed, and the kind that will not. This is a shocking story as most of our Lord's parables do this has a shock at the end the is the reason people gasped when I came to the end of this parable. When I was preaching. It the book, the prodigal son pulls you into this most famous of Jesus parables, and it also pulls you in a Middle Eastern culture and challenges your thinking shows you the practical implications of this story for your life. 240 pages available from Grace to you right and this book is an ideal complement to John's lesson today and tomorrow on grace to you. It can also be a helpful evangelistic tool.

It's a great resource to put in the hands of an unbeliever to order John's book, the prodigal son. Contact us today. Call us toll-free at 855 grace or visit our website The title the book again. The prodigal son you can order a copy for yourself and perhaps an extra one for someone you love when you call us at 855 grace or shop online at TTY.and when you visit Make sure to download the study Bible.

It's a free app that gives you the full text of Scripture in the English standard King James and new American Standard version along with instant access to thousands of online resources and with an in app purchase.

You can also download the notes from the MacArthur study Bible.

That's an additional 25,000 notes to help you understand what you're reading and apply it to your life, the app again. It's titled the study Bible is free to download from once more.

That's our website. now for John MacArthur and the entire grace to you staff, I'm Phil Johnson.

Thanks for tuning in today and make sure you're here tomorrow when John looks at what Scripture teaches you about the holiness of God and how his holiness should compel us to worship. It's another half hour of unleashing God's truth one verse at a time on grace

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