These Are the Days—Luke 17:22-37

Jesus’ teaching in Luke 17:22-37 pertains to his Second Coming and shouldn’t be avoided or thought to fall into some category of things “panning out” in the end, but carefully studied.

Matthew talks about his glorious return in Matthew 24:29-31. Paul elaborates on the event in 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10. The Apostle Peter also talks about the days leading up to the Lord’s return in his second letter (2 Peter 2:4-6) using the days of Noah and Sodom as examples. There are, of course, other passages that address the Lord’s return directly or indirectly. What follows is my collective understanding of this blessed hope, but anchored in Luke’s account in Chapter 17, since this is a verse-by-verse study.

These instructions follow Jesus’ exchange with the Pharisees in verses 20 and 21, about them missing out on the presence of God in the here and now. A crying shame.

The disciples had pushed to the back of their minds his statement in Luke 9:22: “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, be killed and then raised up on the third day.” So in 17:22 he reminds them of an anxious future state of affairs.

22 And He said to the disciples, “The days will come when you will long to see one of the days of the Son of Man, and you will not see it.”

There’s a saying that goes “you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone.” For the disciples, times would never be better than those days accompanying the Lord on his earthly mission. He would send them his Holy Spirit when he left, yes, but his physical presence is what they’d soon yearn for, even but for one day. It’s what we all yearn for as we still live through the days Jesus describes in verse 22.

 23 “They will say to you, ‘Look there! Look here!’ Do not go away, and do not run after them.”

Knowing that we will be vulnerable during our wait, Satan will attempt to use our eagerness to fill the void, that is, if the Holy Spirit hasn’t. The devil will have our heads spinning with false messiahs if we let him. “Look there! Look here!” (See 2 Peter 2:1-3) Jesus warns (“do not go away, and do not run after them”) and Paul in Ephesians 6:11, tells us to stand firm against his schemes. “Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.”

24 “For just like the lightning, when it flashes out of one part of the sky, shines to the other part of the sky, so will the Son of Man be in His day.” 

The illustration of lightning flashing in the sky is all too familiar to me living reportedly in the lightning capital of the world. Indeed, the heavens light up with just one bolt. When he returns on His Day, those present will be blinded by his light.

25 But first He must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation.”

But first things first. He’d have to suffer a gruesome death, be buried, and rise again. Worse perhaps was the rejection he encountered at the hands of his own people.

 26 And just as it happened in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man: 27 they were eating, they were drinking, they were marrying, they were being given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all. 28 It was the same as happened in the days of Lot: they were eating, they were drinking, they were buying, they were selling, they were planting, they were building; 29 but on the day that Lot went out from Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all. 30 It will be just the same on the day that the Son of Man is revealed. 31 On that day, the one who is on the housetop and whose goods are in the house must not go down to take them out; and likewise the one who is in the field must not turn back. 32 Remember Lot’s wife. 33 Whoever seeks to keep his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it.“

One thing I noticed right away reading this passage was the difference in the use of days and day. There are the days of Noah and Sodom, and the days of the Son of Man (Jesus Christ). At the conclusion of the days of Noah and Sodom, there was a day of judgement. When the days of the Son of Man suddenly conclude, there will be the day of our Lord, which always alludes to inescapable final judgment. Those affected will wish to be back in the days of the Son of Man (v. 22) when there was still time.

In Noah and Lot’s days, life was as it is now, in the sense of the normal things you’d expect to be occurring (pertaining to life in general). Then it happens…

34 I tell you, on that night there will be two in one bed; one will be taken and the other will be left. 35 There will be two women grinding at the same place; one will be taken and the other will be left.”  

These verses have been erroneously interpreted and taught as referring to the Rapture of Christians. The woman “taken” is supposed to rise to meet the Lord in the air. I’ve heard this “take” even from esteemed pastors. But the opposite is true. Those taken have been judged. Those left populate the Kingdom of God. Verse 36 is thought to be added to the original text.

37 And answering they said to Him, “Where, Lord?” [meaning where are they taken?] And He said to them, “Where the body is, there also the vultures will be gathered.”

The word for vultures can mean eagles, but the context here is one of judgment, and we rarely see eagles gathered as we do vultures. Matthew 24:28 says, “Wherever the corpse is, there the vultures will gather.”

As I understand it, those on the planet at that time of Christ’s return will be the “ungodly” going about their daily business, a remnant of believers (the “elect” or “chosen ones” in Matt. 24:31) hiding out in the “four corners” of the earth, and those on the housetop or in the field who have one last chance to head for the hills (Luke 17:31).

Moreover, the times or days of the Son of Man go “on the clock” following the Rapture, at the start of the seven-year tribulation. So there will be a final day that can be somewhat “predicted.” It’s much like watching the ark under construction.

Again, it is important to remember there was a day and hour that the door to the ark finally slammed shut with only eight people inside, and the city of Sodom was incinerated.

For the vision is yet for the appointed time;
It hastens toward the goal and it will not fail.
Though it tarries, wait for it;
For it will certainly come, it will not delay.

Habakkuk 2:3

Like language incorporated into legal documents to address the seriousness of compliance, the readers of this passage must “govern themselves accordingly!”

Posted in Bible study, Commentary, Luke | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Have You Noticed?

11 While He was on the way to Jerusalem, He was passing between Samaria and Galilee.
12 As He entered a village, ten leprous men who stood at a distance met Him;
13 and they raised their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!”
14 When He saw them, He said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” And as they were going, they were cleansed.
15 Now one of them, when he saw that he had been healed, turned back, glorifying God with a loud voice,
16 and he fell on his face at His feet, giving thanks to Him. And he was a Samaritan.
17 Then Jesus answered and said, “Were there not ten cleansed? But the nine—where are they?
18 “Was no one found who returned to give glory to God, except this foreigner?”
19 And He said to him, “Stand up and go; your faith has made you well.”

Luke 17:11–19 (NASB95)

Not only had the Samaritan man been obedient to someone he should hate, he made the connection between his healing and God’s hand. The nine were no doubt ecstatic but for some reason (we can only speculate) failed to recognize who healed them. One wonders if they even made it to the priests given the freedom that they all suddenly enjoyed.

There are many takes on this miracle. I’ve heard many from the pulpit. Rightly so, most come down hard on the nine ungrateful lepers. But he who is without sin, cast the first stone! Honestly, at times I’ve witnessed the hand of God in my life, and in my exuberance, I haven’t immediately turned back and fallen at his feet. But it’s not only when a mountain has been moved on my behalf that I’m to give him glory, but in everything!

In everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Constantly we should be rerolling this tape in our minds, “Thank you God, thank you God, thank you God!” And we should be seeing God’s hand in everything we do and encounter. “Everything he does is magic, every little thing,” to borrow from the Police song.

That may be Jesus’ point in bringing up the Kingdom of God (Luke 17:20-21). The only sign of its coming arrival the people needed was God on two feet. The Kingdom of God was in their midst! Only the Samaritan leper seemed to notice.

Posted in Devotionals, Luke | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Just a Few Things

“So you too, when you do all the things which are commanded you, say, ‘We are unworthy slaves; we have done only that which we ought to have done.’ ” Luke 17:10 (NAS)

Read Luke 17:7-10

We tend to think only the “above and beyond stuff” is worthy of the response “well done good and faithful servant.” To this point Matthew 25:21 says, “His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’”

In business you get nowhere if you just do the minimum (they call that these days “quiet quitting”). You must grow and prosper the company, and to do so you hire special people to do special things over and beyond. It’s different in God’s work though. The more you know about what He expects the less you actually think you are doing that which is special and commendable.

Case in point. I’ve noticed in interviews with World War II heroes the familiar refrain, “I just did what anyone else would do.” That is to say, they did what was expected.

Perhaps all of our service falls into the category of what is expected. Maybe it’s just a few things we’re asked to do. Perhaps the bar is not set at winning over an entire continent of people for Christ. Maybe God simply wants me just to be a faithful husband and father, period.

Just so you know, our verse describes an “unworthy” slave, meaning worth nothing over and beyond the room and board owed him for discharging his duties, lest we get carried away with the common understanding of translations “useless” and “unprofitable.”

No matter what we’re called to do, after completing the work, we should think and say, “we have only done that which we ought to have done.” All glory to God.

I recall Olympic champion Sydney McLaughlin unapologetically give glory to God after winning the gold medal in the 400 meter hurdles in Tokyo in 2021. To paraphrase her standard response to her many victories and world records, “I put in the work, the rest I just give all the glory to God.”

In a well-oiled church, service opportunities are abundant. But they’re on someone else’s checklist, not yours. It’s easy to feel guilty when you repeatedly say “no” to requests to “serve.” But the real question is whether you are doing your “few things.” Remember the dynamic preacher Apollos? Paul failed in his attempt to recruit him.

But concerning Apollos our brother, I encouraged him greatly to come to you with the brethren; and it was not at all his desire to come now, but he will come when he has opportunity. 1 Corinthians 16:12

He was already hard at work at his “few things.”

Perhaps all God wants is someone faithful, sensible, and reliable at work where he or she has been placed by His hand. Certainly He’s put us all in charge of at least a few things!

“Who then is the faithful and sensible slave whom his master put in charge of his household to give them their food at the proper time?” Matthew 24:45

Jesus Christ while on earth was the greatest servant of all. In his “high priestly prayer” in the garden, as found in John 17, he goes through a list of his “accomplishments,” all apparently his expected duties while on earth (note my emphases below).

4 “I glorified You on the earth, having accomplished the work which You have given Me to do.”

6 “I have manifested Your name to the men whom You gave Me out of the world.”

8 “The words which You gave Me I have given to them.”

12 “While I was with them, I was keeping them in Your name which You have given Me; and I guarded them.”

22 “The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one.”

26 “I have made Your name known to them, and will make it known.”

It is interesting that at the start of (Matthew 3:17) and during his ministry (Matthew 17:5) God the father commended Jesus. “This is my son in whom I am well pleased,” even though He had not yet fully discharged these responsibilities (see John 17:26 above). The important thing is he was where he needed to be, doing what he ought to do. So then, it’s our position, not our perspiration that God commends.

Warren Wiersbe in his commentary on this teaching says this,

“As His servants, we must beware lest we have the wrong attitude toward our duties. There are two extremes to avoid: merely doing our duty in a slavish way because we have to, or doing our duty because we hope to gain a reward.”

So stop feeling guilty about not doing what you haven’t been called to do, or put out that you’re not getting your just due (praise and adoration) for what you are doing, and without pretense faithfully, sensibly and reliably do the few God-chosen things you have been called to do, and then, to the rest, to God be the glory.

Posted in Bible study, Devotionals, Luke | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Lesser to the Greater

5 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” 6 And the Lord said, “If you had faith like a mustard seed, you would say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and be planted in the sea’; and it would obey you. Luke 17:5–6 (NAS)

Practicing the Christian faith is no cake walk. Rebuking and forgiving are advanced tasks carried out only in the power of the Holy Spirit (Luke 17:4).

Even so, the weighty burden to pull off Christ’s teachings was beginning to cause the apostles’ shoulders to sag. Thus the exclamation from them, “Increase our faith!”

With a modicum of faith, Jesus said, say as small as the tiniest of seeds, the mustard seed, his men could uproot and levitate a thirty-five foot mulberry tree and drop it into the nearby Sea of Galilee.

Again, a mind-boggling reply to a seemingly simple request. But it was genius, of course. Who is faced with such a daunting task? Most of us are worried about finishing a tough project, a couple of incorrigible kids, or stretching a paycheck. Jesus argues from the lesser to the greater in this instance, knowing full well our trials and tribulations require less “heavy lifting,” but nonetheless, a full measure of faith.

The logical argument normally put forth, often by Paul, was from the greater to the lesser. For example, Romans 8:31–32.

31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?

It seems easier to follow Paul’s logic, although tossing the mulberry tree in the sea is actually far less of a challenge to God (in theory) than delivering up one’s own Son as a sacrifice for our sins.

Posted in Devotionals, Luke | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Nip it in the Bud

3 “Be on your guard! If your brother sins, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. 4 “And if he sins against you seven times a day, and returns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ forgive him.” Luke 17:3–4 (NAS)

This admonition puts me squarely out of my comfort zone. I am very capable of spotting the sins of others, but not at rebuking these sins. It is more likely for me to complain about the sinning to a third party than to directly confront the sinner. And there’s always the hesitancy and fear of confrontation, then perhaps more so the feeling that who am I to talk, sinner that I am?

But this passage seems to concern the one-on-one sin that must be directly dealt with particularly among Christians for repentance and restoration to occur. Such activity is vital in the Body of Christ. If done correctly, regularly, and with reciprocity, it allows love to reign supreme. If it’s absent strife ensues (Euodia vs. Syntyche, Philippians 4:2).

If this process does take place, the purpose should not be to exact a pound of flesh, but to forgive and forget. Jesus spots these specific dangers upfront though: repeat offenses and the failure to release the sinner from bondage. As the Lord does with us, time and time again he forgives and forgets. Ad infinitum. We should be prepared and willing to do the same.

One other thing. If this process follows initial petty misunderstandings, it’s easy. When allowed to fester, things can get ugly. Best to nip it in the bud.

Posted in Devotionals, Luke | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Stumbling Blocks

1 He said to His disciples, “It is inevitable that stumbling blocks come, but woe to him through whom they come! 2 “It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were thrown into the sea, than that he would cause one of these little ones to stumble. Luke 17:1–2 (NAS)

This passage should haunt every step a father takes in raising up his children. The dad can create certain “stumbling blocks” by his words and deeds . When sets of eyes are watching you, rest assured what you say and do will grant permission to your progeny to follow rhe same courses in the future.

I am glad the Lord used a graphic illustration to remind me of the consequences of being a bad role model. Early on, in response to this very verse, and the versions in Matthew and Mark (Matthew 18:6, Mark 9:42), I decided to withhold permission to my kids by what I said or did in certain “gray areas” well known as stumbling blocks. I did not want them to hang the bad influences like a millstone around my neck. The world has enough of its own, by the way.

Did this strategy work now that they’re grown? For the most part yes. Certainly my conscience is clear.

In general, when Jesus says, “Woe to,” take it to heart.

Posted in Devotionals, Luke | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

No Returns

And besides all this, between us and you there is a great chasm fixed, so that those who wish to come over from here to you will not be able, and that none may cross over from there to us.’ Luke 16:26

There’s a saying “to hell and back.” No one has made this journey except perhaps the Lord himself. In the time between his death and resurrection, 1 Peter 3:19-20 seems to indicate his living spirit paid a visit to demons confined to hell to pronounce his victory over evil and death.

19 In which He also went and made proclamation to the spirits in prison, 20 who once were disobedient when the patience of God kept waiting in the days of Noah, during the construction of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through the water.

In this account, the days of Noah are relevant in understanding the point of Matthew 16:19-31, the story of the rich man and Lazarus; there are “no returns.”

Peter reminds us only eight persons were saved from the Great Flood when the door of the Ark slammed shut. To rest in the bosom of Abraham you must believe while you still have breath!

Jesus tells of the horrible reality of dying without having trusted him in your lifetime. There’s a wide chasm fixed between the rich man and Lazarus. Both men are very much alive as they respectively endure agony and ecstasy. No deal can be struck for a drop of water to sooth the tongue, or even to get a message of warning out to loved ones.

We also know that the rich man’s agony is unrelenting and severe. We know that it is experienced in full consciousness and to the Nth degree. We know that his regret is just as persistent. There will never be a second in all of eternity that he will not think back to when there was an opportunity to exit the road to perdition.

On the other side Lazarus rests comfortably in Abraham’s bosom, a picture of what it means to be safe and sound. There is no way to venture over to the other side and no desire to. As unyielding is the rich man’s pain, is Lazarus’ sweet comfort.

While Jesus did not seem to plead with his audiences, when the consequences of unbelief are contemplated in the context of irrevocable damnation, we should be concluding our gospel presentations with, “I’m begging you, please!”

An answer “no” or “not yet” should be horrifying to those who know the truth. As one continues to walk away, the chasm only grows wider.

Hear this.

For He says,“At the acceptable time I listened to you, And on the day of salvation I helped you.” Behold, now is “the acceptable time,” behold, now is “the day of salvation.”

2 Corinthians 6:2
Posted in Devotionals, Matthew | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Getting in Line

15 And He said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves in the sight of men, but God knows your hearts; for that which is highly esteemed among men is detestable in the sight of God. 16 “The Law and the Prophets were proclaimed until John; since that time the gospel of the kingdom of God has been preached, and everyone is forcing his way into it. Luke 16:15–16 (NAS)

Expressways in my county are notorious for forcing multiple lanes of traffic into one lane at major junctions. At the last minute cars forcibly attempt to wedge in to make their connection. This is how Jesus described the common man’s interest in the “good news” of the kingdom, a response at which the eavesdropping Pharisees scoffed.

They were also triggered by Jesus’ takes on money and marriage. They did not find greed and divorce detestable and marginalized the law’s teaching on these subjects to fit their proclivities. Jesus, on the other hand, did not come to dispense with the law but to fulfill it (Matthew 5:17). He also said, “it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one stroke of a letter of the Law to fail” (Luke 16:17).

Since the law was only kept by one man to the letter and in its truest spirit, and was such a high bar to scale, it’s no wonder the people were forcing their way into the line forming behind him.

Posted in Devotionals, Luke | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Little Things Matter

“He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much.” Luke 16:10 (NAS)

Luke 16:1-13, The Unrighteous Steward

It’s the little things that matter. We tend to live our lives as though they aren’t open for inspection, but they are to God.

If we are cavalier in the management of the basic things of life, serving as God’s steward will not be an option. For example, you cannot serve in church leadership if you are reproachable, so says Paul (1 Timothy 3:2).

There are many who are shrewd and make millions, but is God impressed? I don’t want to be commended for my shrewdness but my faithfulness. Actually, He wants us shrewd in the use of our time, talent and treasure for his Kingdom.

In the end we’ll stand alone before Jesus and give an account. Therefore, we must realize early on that we’re not strong enough to dig and too ashamed to beg (16:3). We’ll not have time to retrace our steps, fix things and cut deals.

I’ve always valued having done things faithfully over a long period of time, exercise, time at one job, marriage to one woman, early morning Bible reading, etc. But this is only possible by starting early, setting patterns of faithfulness, and following them routinely day in day out.

It’s not too late to start though. After all, they’re just little things.

Posted in Devotionals, Luke | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

A Man Had Two Sons

The familiar story, The Prodigal Son, could be told from the very first verse.

And Jesus said, “A man had two sons.” Luke 15:11 (NAS)

I feel inadequate to add my two cents to it because scholars, preachers, professors, and teachers have already set us straight on what this parable does and does not say. They are careful to warn against the urge to allegorize from its characters and elements. The less didactic, present company included, should glean from its low hanging fruit and let it teach itself. Why tell a 20 minute story to start your sermon about a story the Lord himself cleverly crafted, or get lost in the theological weeds telling it? So succinctly, it is a masterful tale of human nature, grace and disgrace, hoping and believing all things, forgiveness, pride and jealousy, and repentance and restoration,.

All this being said, I thought it might be interesting to profile the starring characters, to reverently build their backstories from clues in the text. One thought is clear though, only when the Lord has invoked a change of heart can a change of heart occur. Sadly, as this story ends, some serious issues in the heart of the eldest son are unresolved and deserve an epilogue.

As a father of four, the first three being boys, I am well aware of the tricky dynamics of budding masculinity. I am also the first born of two sons, so I can understand the psyche of the prodigal’s crotchety brother. The second born was a free spirit, early on itching to sow wild oats. He was not responsible but likable and lovable. His brother towed the line, expecting reward for good behavior. The eldest enjoyed too much adult conversation early on by rank and thought himself to be wiser than he was, and was quietly building a dossier of his father’s shortcomings and foibles. He certainly had his brother’s predilections pegged.

The “old man” was generous to a fault. He desired to please and obviously had difficulty saying no. There is no hint that he wanted the young whippersnapper to learn the hard way. He probably admired his oldest and thought of him as an ally, but was oblivious to his glibness. He had a soft spot for the youngest and probably thought him to be delightful and entertaining. When wayward, he’d talk his way back into the father’s good graces. It is no wonder that when presented with the youngest’s bold request, he quickly acquiesced without sensing that this was a very bad idea. It is important to note the story makes no mention of a discerning wife and partner who might have seen things a different way!

It is clear that the youngest had a plan he needed to fund. He only had a third of his father’s estate coming and the proceeds had to be transportable, fungible, and liquid, so he cashed out. He therefore left a lot on the table to do what he did, to be able to gather it up and go. If he had stayed put, his inheritance would have grown, with access to fixed assets later on. The clear recipient of his rashness was his older brother, who probably thought and vocalized the idea to be hairbrained and shortsighted when he heard of it, and likely predicted his brother would squander it in no time based on past experience.

In the end, the budding prodigal was enabled and in a short matter of time on his way. It’d be unlikely that he’d be cut any slack if he returned, though, as his father stuck with protocol in doling out his lot in life, and his big brother would hold his feet to the fire. He had passed the point of no return.

In a distant foreign land, sans any semblance of the ethical and moral restraints of his father’s faith, the prodigal plunged into riotous living. The money he had in his bag flowed through his fingers like water. For a brief time he was high on life and pleasure, but in the morning reality and regret set in with his hangover. He had lost everything. To eat he’d have to find a job, and it’d be slopping pigs, the ultimate humiliation. That he got himself hired in a foreign country in a time of famine is indicative of his powers to persuade, and it was at this dead end that he came to his senses.

If the prodigal had not “come to his senses” and admitted he had sinned against God, it would have been just another artful way of extricating himself from a self-inflicted jam. His plan in the Lord’s story is absent any angle to restore his privileges. If accepted back he’d be a hired hand first to his father and then to his brother. There was no way around it. He was focused on that sole objective and no other scenario crossed his mind as he set a course to return. It was on that slog back home that he, now a shadow of himself, appealed even more desperately for God’s mercy.

There was not a day gone by that the father was not hoping that his son would return. He did not know how far he’d fallen or if he was even alive. The absence must have been long enough to start losing hope given his reaction when the son returned. He always had one eye on the winding road below. It had become an obsession to cast a glance there repeatedly like a nervous twitch. He finally saw a lonely figure moving toward the house and he quickly gathered up his tunic and sprinted down the path, casting any care aside for the potential humiliation that this act might bring, let alone that he was up in years.

When they met the father loudly wept on the son’s neck. As the wayward son gave his well-rehearsed speech, his father was preoccupied with unbridled joy. In his exuberance he ordered the servants to fetch a festal robe (Zechariah 3:4) and sandals, and put his signet ring (Genesis 41:42) on his son’s finger. These were clear signs of full restoration to the family.

In those days, there was always one calf that was fattened in anticipation of an unplanned celebration, and this would be one for the ages, for his son was dead and now alive!

The older son was unaware of his brother’s return as he arrived back from his dutiful labor in what would eventually be his field. He asked a servant about the ruckus inside and was told the news. Rather than be joyous himself, he was ticked, and turned and began walking away fuming. It might be better said in a jealous rage. Hearing that his older son had been told the happy news, the father immediately went outside to fetch him. Despite his pleading, the older son could only compare and contrast his loyalty and righteousness with the hedonism of his brother. The father rightfully fired back, reminding him that all he had was his, and that what was lost had been found!

This is our God, who puts our sins as far as the east is from the west and remembers them no more. He does not exact his pound of flesh when we go astray as we all do, but restores us to our rightful place in His presence. This is his response to repentance and confession. He does not walk away in disgust but weeps on our neck and then celebrates. He is full of compassion, mercy and grace.

9 He will not always strive with us,
Nor will He keep His anger forever.
10 He has not dealt with us according to our sins,
Nor rewarded us according to our iniquities.
11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
So great is His lovingkindness toward those who fear Him.
12 As far as the east is from the west,
So far has He removed our transgressions from us.
13 Just as a father has compassion on his children,
So the Lord has compassion on those who fear Him.
14 For He Himself knows our frame;
He is mindful that we are but dust.

Psalm 103:9–14 (NAS)
Posted in Devotionals, Luke | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment