What Jesus Did! 'The Loving Father' — Luke 15:25-30

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

"The older son was in the field. He came closer to the house. He heard the sound of music and dancing. So the older son called to one of the servant boys and asked, 'What does all this mean?' The servant said, 'Your brother has come back. Your father killed the fat calf to eat. Your father is happy because your brother came home safely!' The older son was angry and would not go in to the party. So his father went out to ask him to come in. The son said to his father, 'I have served you like a slave for many years! I have always obeyed your commands. But you never killed even a goat for me! You never gave a party for me and my friends. But your other son has wasted all your money on prostitutes. Then he comes home, and you kill the fat calf for him!'"
— Luke 15:25-30 NLT
Illustration of Luke 15:25-30 NLT —  The son said to his father, 'I have served you like a slave for many years!

Key Thought

There is no doubt that the behavior of the older son is horrible and selfish. "I've been working hard (lit. "slaving") for you all these years ..." reveals his attitude about his service to his father. He doesn't see what the younger son has discovered; it is better to be a slave in the father's house than to be without the father! What is amazing is the grace of the father. He loves both sons. He has given the inheritance to both sons. So he does what a father would have never been expected to do in that day: he goes out to console his pouting and selfish son and invite him to the banquet. Jesus' point is that our Heavenly Father doesn't want any child to be lost—not the rebellious child and not the self-righteous child. The bottom line is that the Father loves each and every one of us and wants us all to be a part of his celebration of grace no matter the place we are now!

Today's Prayer

Father, thank you for your unselfish and inexhaustible love. Without your grace I would be lost. With your grace, I give thanks in anticipation of the great celebration of your grace before your throne. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Ephesians 2:8-9
  • Matthew 25:21
  • Psalm 21:6


About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.