Luke 15 paints a wonderful picture of what the heart of God looks like. In this chapter Jesus is explaining God’s love. Matt Chandler said that Luke 15 is, “one parable…It’s like a Quentin Tarantino movie that switches around and you’re not really sure what happened. All the sudden there is one story and then there is another story but it is all one movie. That is what happens in this text, you have three separate stories that are really one movie.” Although titles don’t mean a big deal in the end, but for me this is not about a “Prodigal Son” as much as it is the story about a loving father.
Reading the first two verses of Luke 15 will help us understand the rest of the chapter. The Scriptures tell us, “Now all the tax collectors and the [a]sinners were coming near Him to listen to Him. 2 Both the Pharisees and the scribes began to grumble, saying, ‘This man receives sinners and eats with them.’” (Luke 15:1-2).
The Scribes and the Pharisees were better than you and I are. They prayed more. They memorized more Scripture than you do. Compared to them we are, “a junior varsity who will never touch the field.” One of the requirements to be a Pharisee was to have memorized the Torah. Some were so serious they only took a certain number of steps on the Sabbath. You might have a Jesus shirt for every day of the week but they would be like, “That’s all you got is five?”
The third parable that Jesus tells his audience is the story of Prodigal Son. This is a story about a son who wants his father’s inheritance, spends it all through loose living, and ends up hungry working in a pig pen. When he finally comes back to his senses, he is reminded of his father’s love.
Many people are on the discontent treadmill. They think that they will be satisfied if they only had that car, relationship, house, perfect body, or career. They chase and chase after these things thinking that the things and people will satisfy them. My friends only God can cause you to be content with what you have. The prodigal son was on this discontent treadmill. He had a great life with a father and brother that loved him. Instead of staying there he went after all this stuff to satisfy him. Instead he was left feeling alone. There is nothing wrong with having things as long as things don’t have you. The discontent treadmill tells you that, “What you need to be happy, is actually more than what you already have.”
If you believe in Christ as your savior, you are made holy. This word for holiness is twofold which means that something is set apart and complete. God is holy; this definition explains to us that God is complete in and of Himself. Yet even though he does not need us, He wants us! He is chasing after us! God is not on a treadmill, He is on the road of contentment running towards us. My message to you is simple, open your arms and run towards Him in the same way.