This past Sunday we dove deeper into the story of The Prodigal Son, and introduced a new character referred to as the “Third Son”.
What difference does believing that Jesus Christ is the Son of God make in your life?
This is an important question when we celebrate the empty tomb of Jesus Christ.
James 2:19-20 Do I hear you professing to believe in the one and only God, but then observe you complacently sitting back as if you had done something wonderful? That’s just great. Demons do that, but what good does it do them? Use your heads! Do you suppose for a minute that you can cut faith and works in two and not end up with a corpse on your hands?
The Prodigal Son:
– younger son demands “his due”
– he gets out of town on his adventure
– everyone wants to party with him
– the money and the friends run out
– he’s reduced to feeding pigs in a heathen land
– he decides to return home
– his father sees him coming, runs to meet him
– he is accepted, restored back to the Father
The Elder Brother:
– He hears the celebration and is angry the younger is forgiven, refuses to celebrate.
– The Father is caught between the joy of one son’s return and the condemnation of the other.
– The Father declares that the only response when the dead come back to life and that which was lost is found is to celebrate.
The Third Son – Jesus Christ, the teller of the story:
Why did Jesus come from Heaven to this earth?
John 3:16-17 For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.
The message of the third Son is clear: God is not interested in having slaves.
– those who serve out of fear and obligation (like the prodigal)
– those who serve him but without love and relationship (like the elder son)
What God wants is sons and daughters restored back to His heart and home, destined to live with Him forever.
Paul made this profound synopsis of the reason Jesus came to the earth:
1 Timothy 1:15 It is a trustworthy statement, deserving full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners,
Jesus came as a Son to represent the heart of the Father to everyone who would listen.
John 5:19 Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner.
Everything Jesus promised originated from the Father’s heart.
Here is what He promised:
Matthew 11:28 – rest
John 4:10 – living water
John 6:37 – acceptance
John 8:32 – truth
John 10:10 – abundant life
John 14:27 – peace
Matthew 9:2 – forgiveness of sins
John 17:25-26 “O righteous Father, although the world has not known You, yet I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me; and I have made Your name known to them, and will make it known, so that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.”
Jesus came to reveal the Father’s love.
Church can become an obligation we pay to give an approving nod to the belief we have grown up with. And that’s tragic.
Above all else, the Third Son in the story came to tell you, the Father is waiting and watching for your return! Jesus wants to lead you back to the Father’s house!