Grace Baptist Church

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Rejoicing in Heaven

Rejoicing in Heaven

Apr 23, 2017

Passage: Luke 15:1-32

Preacher: Jared Longshore

Category: Sunday Morning

Keywords: grumbling, lost and found, parable, prodigal, rejoice


Pastor Jared Longshore opens God’s Word to Luke 15:1-32 with a message entitled “Rejoicing in Heaven.” The parables in this passage tell us about both God and ourselves. Only as we come to know God can we truly understand ourselves and our great need of and for Him.

Beginning with and concentrating on the parable of the prodigal, we see four different characters, the first of which is a graceless man. Like a Pharisee, he seems knowledgeable, obedient, seeking his idea of justice, yet he cannot help but grumble about his lot and the lot of others. Grumbling reveals the heart of this self-centered man and provides a check for us; where is our heart, do we grumble or are we content with what God has provided?

The second character is the seeking God. There is no grumbling with God. Rather than grumbling over sinners He goes and seeks after them. He uses life situations and the consequences of sin to draw sinners near to Him. Using all necessary measures, He leaves the ninety-nine and goes after the missing one. Here again the parable provides a lesson for us; God seeks us and wants us to turn to Him. There is hope for even the worst sinner.

The next character presented is the repenting sinner. He was a lost sinner who “came to himself.” The prodigal, regaining his senses, came to a point where he clearly recognized his need and his own inability to fill that need. He saw both the truth that sin leads to death and the way to avoid death was to seek forgiveness from his sins. Turning from his sin he returns to his father, confessing and acknowledging his own unworthiness. Here again, we are forced to look at ourselves and assess our standing before a holy, sinless God.

Finally, the fourth character, a rejoicing heaven, is presented. We see the magnitude of joy in heaven as sinners repent. The angels rejoice over even one repentant sinner. There is more joy over the one repentance than there is over ninety-nine people righteous in their own eyes. Sadly for the graceless man, heaven goes on rejoicing with or without him. The same is true for all of us if we fail to repent and come to the Father through the work of Jesus Christ on the Cross of Calvary. Having seen personal lessons in the first three characters we ought not to miss this point in a rejoicing heaven. Has heaven yet rejoiced over your repentance or is the rejoicing going on despite your absence. Come to Him today and be part of that rejoicing.