The Prodigal Love of God
Day 236: The Prodigal Love of God
Luke 15:20 (AV) — 20 And he arose, and came to his father. But 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.
The passage of Luke 15:11-32 has come to be known as The Parable of the Prodigal Son.
To be prodigal, according to Webster's 1828 dictionary, means "one that expends money extravagantly or without necessity; one that is profuse or lavish; a waster."
This parable is perhaps the most famous of all, giving hope to many who have wasted their lives on sinful living because it reveals something about God that is just so hard to believe: He is prodigal in His love.
Alex Early, in his book, The Reckless Love of God, comments on this parable of Jesus:
Though more space in Scripture is dedicated to describing the son, this story says a lot more about the father than the rebel. The only thing more reckless than the son's rebellion is the father's grace. This is what grace actually looks like—it's extravagant and completely over the top. It appears wasteful, excessive, and totally senseless.
Did you catch that? "The only thing more reckless than the son's rebellion is the father's grace." Think about that for a minute and let it sink in.
God's grace has been lavishly poured upon you saint of God. Undeserving wretches that we are, God loves us although we waste so much of His grace by living lives that are so unthankful and unthoughtful of His tremendous and magnificent love!
Contemplate the depths of God's love. It's unfathomable. That's the perfect word to describe it. A fathom was a form of measurement used to sound the depth of the sea. A fathom was usually the length by which a man may extend his arms. Try it. Try to fathom the love of God. Paul said that we could comprehend with all the saints the capacity of God's love:
Ephesians 3:17–19 (AV) — 17 That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; 19 And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.
And we do: It is limitless. It is prodigal. Extravagant.
Allowing the reality of God's love to transform us is a lesson God wants us to know concerning Him,
Jesus loves me this I know,
for the Bible tells me so.
That immeasurable love is something, not to check off a list of facts, but to break our hardened hearts, and cause us to weep that God would love even us. But it does us no good while we stay away from the Father's house and play in the pigpen. No, we need to come home, back to the Father's arms of love. That poor son spent all he had in the far country trying to buy what the Father already had for him: love, companionship, and provision.
Proverbs 10:22 (AV) — 22 The blessing of the LORD, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it.
God's blessings bring contentment and joy. The only difference between the two was sorrow. Sorrow is always attached to the pleasures of sin.
'Love to miserable sinners,
Love unfathomed, love to death,
Was the only end and motive,
To resign His gracious breath.'