Gods Love Versus Human Love
We all have different types of acquaintances. They do all sorts of things, and are always so happy to tell us what absolutely naughty things they did. One of those, Jeremy, is from a very spiritual background. He is a kind hearted person, who helps the poor. He is however gets involved with things that ain't godly.
And although he is elderly, with children who are married, he still struggles. He is aware of his ways. I have known him for sometimes, and my interpretation of his life has made me think about Gods love reflected in the Parable of the Prodigal son.
Upon the return of the lost son, his father treats the young man with a generosity far more than he has a right to expect. He is given the best robe, a ring for his finger, and sandals for his feet (Luke 15:22). Clothing here being a symbol of the change in status. In this instance, clothing and accessories represent his rebirth and newfound state.
When my friend Jeremy decides to come back to the Lord, Jesus will receive him and forget all the years of sin. Every dirty action. Every dark practice. He will restore him and give him status. He will be like a new person. He will no longer remember his sin.
That is the nature of the love of our God.
Roman's 8:1 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus”.
So the prodigal son, and Jeremy, have to forgive themselves also. And accept their restored status as children of God. Otherwise, they will continue treating themselves as servants, as the prodigal son expected from his father. That will make the father much happier.
The older son, in contrast, seems to think in terms of "law, merit, and reward", rather than "love and graciousness." He may represent the Pharisees who were criticizing Jesus.
Aren't we not like this most times. We think that because we have served in church for 30 years, and that we have prayed for so long, that we are better than those Jesus has welcomed back. And that our reward here on earth, and in heaven above has to be greater than for the new converts.
St Augustine is a perfect example of a person who changed late in life, and went on to become a saint! A saint! Saint Mary of Egypt is another saint, who was in serious bondage. And even after conversion, many mothers would never have allowed their sons to marry such a person. But that is the nature of our Lord Jesus. She is a saint.
Psalm 103:12 As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
Those who are living in sin, this is a promise by God. Those who have committed the vilest of offences, if we truly repent, Jesus will not remember our sins anymore.
Isaiah 55:8-9 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
He is not man. He does not judge as we do. Because He knows we are like grass. Like worms. We are born today. We die tommorow. He accepts whoever is willing to change.
As for my friend Jeremy, he will probably die a saint. And I will probably not make it to heaven. That's the harsh reality.
Is your Love like that of Jesus, or that of the elder son?