“And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.”—Luke 15:20.
1. The condition of many seekers – 5:16
2. The matchless kindness of the Father – 20:11
The following are select quotes from this sermon.
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O you who know the Lord… while we talk of what he is willing and able to do to the far off sinners, let your souls leap with joyous gratitude at the recollection of how he received you into his love, and made you partakers of his grace in days gone by.
…the sinner is a long way off from God when you consider his utter want of strength to come to God. Even such strength as God has given him is very painfully used. God has given him strength enough to desire salvation, but those desires are always accompanied with deep and sincere grief for sin.
if you had to come to God by the way of your own righteousness you would never reach him, for he is not thus to be found. Christ Jesus is the way. He is the safe, sure, and perfect road to God. He who sees Jesus, has seen the Father; but he who looks to himself will only see despair. The road to heaven by Mount Sinai is impassable by mortal man, but Calvary leads to glory; the secret places of the stairs are in the wounds of Jesus.
I recollect a young prodigal who was received in the same way. Here he stands, it is I, myself. I sat in a little chapel, little dreaming that my Father saw me; certainly I was a great way off. I felt something of my need of Christ, but I did not know what I must do to be saved; though taught the letter of the Word, I was spiritually ignorant of the plan of salvation; though taught it from my youth up, I knew it not. I felt, but I did not feel what I wished to feel. If ever there was a soul that knew itself to be far off from God, I was that soul; and yet in a moment, in one single moment, no sooner had I heard the words, “Look unto me and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth,” no sooner had I turned my eyes to Jesus crucified, than I felt my perfect reconciliation with God, I knew my sins to be forgiven. There was no time for getting out of my heavenly Father’s way, it was done, and done in an instant; and in my case, at least, he ran and fell upon my neck to kiss me. I hope that will be the case this morning; before you can get out of this place, before you can get back to your old doubtings, and fearings, and sighings, and cryings, I hope here the Lord of love will run and meet you, and fall upon your neck and kiss you.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon