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The Hounds of Heaven Pursuing You - We Are All Prodigal Children of God
by Jack Wellman
2010-05-29 09:39:24
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prepareformassdwordpressdcom_400Who pursues us like no human lover ever would? Who would go to the ends of the earth to draw us to Himself? Who looks for us and seeks us out to no end? Who has released the hounds of heaven to retrieve us? Who will never leave, nor forsake us? God is Who.
We might think that we have chosen God, but scripture indicates that God has been lovingly and patiently pursuing us all of our lives. Those who are Christians or may some day become Christians, are being continually pursued as a lost love does their soul mate. The pursuit is relentless, it is effectual, it is with great intensity that God the Father seeks those to whom will be His children for now and for eternity. And God never gives up this pursuit.
Jesus, Paul and even the Father indicate that the hounds of heaven go after and actively seek and pursue those of His. The Good Shepherd leaves the 99 to seek out that which is lost and rejoices when it is found. You, if you are a Christian, are being sought, and if Christ’s, bought, with the greatest price imaginable. The Father seeks us and the cost of His own Son is not held back.
John 6:70 is where Jesus tells the disciples, "Did I Myself not choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?"
John 10:3 He says, "To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out."

John 10:29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand."

Matt. 18:12 -14 Jesus says, “What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off? And if he finds it, I tell you the truth, he is happier about that one sheep than about the ninety-nine that did not wander off. In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should be lost.”
Parable of the Lost Coin Luke 15:8-10 “Or what woman, having ten silver 3coins, if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp, sweep the house, and search carefully until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls her friends and neighbors together, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the piece which I lost!’ Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
The Father
Look at the compassion of the Father regarding his prodigal son.. It was extremely undignified and rare for a father of that culture to run after a son, especially one that had forsaken him. And he lovingly embraces his son and kisses him on the neck.
Luke 15:2--32 tells the story of the prodigal son and it relates to all prodigals, whether they be sons or daughters: “But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. The son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your so‘. But the father said to his servants, 'Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let's have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.' So they began to celebrate. Meanwhile, the older son was in the field. When he came near the house, he heard music and dancing. So he called one of the servants and asked him what was going on. 'Your brother has come,' he replied, 'and your father has killed the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.' The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him. But he answered his father, 'Look! All these years I've been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!' " 'My son,' the father said, 'you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.' "
John 10:29 Jesus tells them plainly that, “My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand."
God the Father draws us to Jesus. (John 6:44). It is not our own awareness that we are sinful people that first turns us to God. Rather, it is God who in his mercy awakens that awareness within us in a similar way to how Jesus summoned Lazarus from the dead (John 11:43-44).

Ephesians 1:4-6 is where Paul says, “For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.”
The Bible emphasizes that there is no one who seeks God (Romans 3:11) and that our “Salvation does not, therefore, depend on man's desire or effort, but on God's mercy” (Romans 9:16).

Paul continues in Romans 8.30, saying that "Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified."
So remember that you are a precious child of Gods. He loves you so much that He pursues you with an effectual love an pursuit that is so relentless, its as if the hound of heaven have been release to search you out, to seek you, to bring you into the Father’s love to be embraced as His own child who He loves and cherishes without end. Just as a parent would be desperately seeking out a lost child, so does the Father seek out those whom He has called and like the Prodigal Father, He sees you off from a far distance, and while you are still a far distance away, He comes running after you to embrace you and to celebrate. You are the apple of His eye. He throws a feast in your honor and now that you are home, He loves you, kisses you, and embraces you and welcomes you to remain with Him forevermore.


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Emanuel Paparella2010-05-29 10:26:15
Jack, if I may pick up on that that Pauline statement in your otherwise inspiring comments on the parable of the Prodigal Son, i.e., Rom. 3:28 implying justification by faith alone, there is a different view in the New Testament and it is that of James (2:14-26) where he tells us Christians that you cannot show that your are saved without works, and that faith without works does not save. I think you would agree that had you said to the cold and hungry homeless that you kindly helped “Go in peace brother for your faith has justified without doing anything to relieve his suffering, would have been is a poor example of Christian practice. At the last judgment we will be judged by what we did to the least of our brethren and therefore as Christ also hints at, there will be many surprises; those who thought they were saved to their surprise will find that they are not exactly because of what they did, or better what they did not do to the least of their brethren. This is the dread about salvation about which Kierkegaard (a Protestant) speaks about in his philosophy of religion.
Some say that it was those contradictions that brought about the Protestant Reformation but in reality it is a mere red herring. Both writers mention “works.” This apparent contradiction is solved when we realize that Paul was speaking of those good works that an unsaved person tries to do in order to win God’s favor or work his way to heaven. James on the other hand was referring to those good works that a saved person performs which gives evidence of a real, living, saving faith. I thought this point needed to be clarified.

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