In the parable of the Prodigal Son in Luke 15, Jesus taught some revealing lessons about the nature of God. One of the things that Jesus did for us is to reveal to us what God is like. One of the ways He did this is by telling earthly stories with heavenly/spiritual meanings. That is what He did in this parable.
One of the main things that this parable teaches us is what God thinks of sinners who come to him. He “runs” out to meet them. Then He “brings out the best” for them and changes them for the better. When the Prodigal came home the father said to his servants, “Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet and bring the fatted calf here and kill it, and let us eat and be merry” (Lk. 15:22-23). The father brought out the best for a son who was unholy, unworthy, and undeserving. God, our Heavenly Father, has done the same for us. Think about it:
HE BRINGS OUT THE BEST TO US –God gives us everything we have. He gives us “life, breath, and all things” (Acts 17:25). He gives us “richly all things to enjoy” (1 Tim. 6:17). He gives us “every good and perfect gift” (James 1:17). We owe God for every aspect of our existence. But the greatest gift He ever gave to us is His Son. The best gift of all was given when God sent his Son to die for us. “Unto us a…son is given” (Isa. 9:6). This was Isaiah’s way of presenting the truth found in the most familiar verse in the Bible: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son…” (John 3:16). He brought out the best of Heaven and gave Him to us. God came running to us in the Person of His Son. He brought out the best to us.
HE BRINGS OUT THE BEST FOR US – Because God brought out the best to us, He also brings out the best for us. The Prodigal Son was dressed in a robe and blessed with a ring. He had a garment and an ornament. The father did for the Prodigal what the Prodigal could not do for himself. He extended forgiveness, freely and fully. There was no interrogation, no investigation, and no aggravation. He needed no explanation. All he needed to know was that his boy came home. This illustrates how God accepts us where we are when we come to him. It does not matter how horrible the sins, how many the “hog pens,” or how long it has been. He is always ready to run to forgive us and favor us with His presence, pardon, provision, and peace. All we have to do is come. And we can come just like the song says, “Just as I am without one plea, but that thy blood was shed for me.” Christ became for us “wisdom from God and righteousness and sanctification and redemption” (1 Cor. 1:30). Therefore He brings out the best for us.
HE BRINGS OUT THE BEST IN US – The Prodigal had a robe and ring and a heart made to sing. The Bible says “they (including the son) began to be merry” (Lk. 15:24). He had a garment and an ornament to help him forget about his past predicament. The Prodigal was given a new life. He was dressed and blessed and given his father’s best. The same is true with us. God brought out the best to us and He brought out the best for us, so that He could bring out the best in us. It is God who works in us “both to will and to do for His good pleasure” (Phil. 2:13). He is “working in” us the things that are “well pleasing in His sight” (Heb. 13:20). We are “being transformed” by the “Spirit of the Lord” (2 Cor. 3:18) and are “being renewed day by day” (2 Cor. 4:16).
The Prodigal was blessed because his father brought out the best to him (his father’s presence). The Prodigal was blessed because his father brought out the best for him (his father’s provision). The Prodigal was blessed because his father brought out the best in him (his father’s peace). And our Father brings out the best in us.
With these thoughts in mind, read Isaiah 61:10 which states:
“I delight greatly in the Lord; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.” We can say that He is “my God,” because He has brought the best to us (His presence). We can say that He has “clothed me with garments of salvation” and “a robe of righteousness” because He has brought out the best for us (His provision). Therefore, we can say, “I delight greatly in the Lord; my soul rejoices” because He brings out the best inus (His peace).
Thank God for Jesus!