Amazing Grace, Unfailing Love
In Jesus’s most memorable & moving parable we see the father’s amazing love restoring the lost son in several ways:
- Identity & intimacy (the sandals of sonship)
- Worth & value (the cloak of family & kinship)
- Belonging, trust & significance (the ring of authority)
- Provision & protection (a household where all the father has is yours)
- Celebration (of the individual & loving relationships)
We read about it in Luke 15:11-32. The first thing the father called for was the best robe.
So he got up and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was moved with compassion for him, and ran and embraced him and kissed him. And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ But the father said to his servants, ‘Quickly bring out the best robe [for the guest of honor] and put it on him; and give him a ring for his hand, and sandals for his feet. And bring the fattened calf and slaughter it, and let us [invite everyone and] feast and celebrate; for this son of mine was [as good as] dead and is alive again; he was lost and has been found.’ So they began to celebrate. Luke 15: 20-24
The fathers great love meant that the son never completed his contrite speech.
He was interrupted & caught up in a powerful embrace that demonstrated how much he was loved.
Actions so often speak so much louder than words. His son was alive & home.
This was quickly followed by putting the true servants to work.
They were instructed to quickly bring the best robe, the father’s own robe, to clothe his son.
This robe was a ceremonial robe that belonged to the father & was reserved for guests of honour.
Amazingly the father is honouring the son who had so cruelly dishonoured him (by requesting an early inheritance & leaving home).
Even more amazingly the father is doing this publicly. In full sight of all & to top that off there would be a celebration about it too.
The lost son had thought himself unworthy to be counted a son & had resigned himself to servitude at best.
How powerful these gracious actions & lavish gifts must have been. They spoke & signified family & kinship.
What better way to restore worth & bestow lasting value. This is who you are & this is where you belong.
Clothing the son with the robe communicated that he was honoured, valued & back where he truly belonged.
This parable is a portrayal of our return to relationship with God our Father through Christ our Saviour.
When we come to our senses by accepting the sacrifice of Christ we too are clothed with a robe – the robe of His righteousness (Isaiah 61:10; Ephesians 4:24, 6:14). We put on & clothe ourselves in Christ (Romans 13:14; Galatians 3:27).
We are greatly valued & highly honoured as sons & joint heirs of God (Romans 8:17).
What a mighty privilege we have of being clothed in Christ’s righteousness.
Just amazing!!! Bask in the warmth & depth of His great love for you & grace toward you.
Rest secure in the honour & value the Lord bestows upon you.
Be content in who & where you belong.
- Do I feel fully unworthy in any way before my heavenly Father?
- In what ways do I feel honoured & valued by my heavenly Father?
- Meditate upon the power of actions & what they signify.
A song related to this theme:
Thank you for Your amazing grace & unfailing love,
That in Your great compassion & love you welcome me home & gloriously celebrate my return.
Thank you for clothing me In Christ’s righteousness,
And for the lavish ways you bestow honour & value to me.
Abba, Father, I stand in awe of your mighty love & grace,
Thank you that I belong to You.
In Jesus mighty Name.
Written by Gareth Jones