by Steve Wagers

Coming Home
Steve N. Wagers
Luke 15:11-24
October 14. 2007

Sermon Outline
1. The Wayward One GOES OUT!
A) His Selfish Request
1) Where it Took Him
2) What it Cost Him
B) His Sad Ruin
2. The Wounded One GIVES UP!
A) Reality Sets In
B) Humility Takes Over
3. The Welcomed One GETS BACK!
A) His Arrival was Anticipated
1) The Father Looked for Him
2) The Father Leaped toward Him
3) The Father Lunged at Him
4) The Father Loved on Him
B) His Arrival was Celebrated
1) He was Robed with Forgiveness
2) He was Ringed with Favor
3) He was Reshod with Fellowship
4) He was Rewarded with Festivity
William J. Kirkpatrick began his song writing ministry when he was a fife major to the 91st Regiment P.V. with the Union army in the Civil War. But, it was not until after the death of his first wife in 1878 was he able to devote himself full time to his great love. William wrote the tunes to many favorite hymns: "Jesus Saves, ""'Tis Sweet to Trust in Jesus," "Redeemed, How I Love to Proclaim It," and "He Hideth My Soul."
However, one of his most famous hymns was written to express his desire to see souls saved, and changed by the power of Christ. In his later years, he became a much-requested song leader at camp meetings.
In one of the meetings, a soloist had been hired to provide the special music. He had a magnificent voice, and was able to put tremendous expression into the music he sang. However, William noticed that the young man always left after he finished singing, and never stayed to hear the sermon.
Afraid that the soloist was not a Christian, William knelt in his tent and prayed long and earnestly for his soul. As he prayed, some words began to form in his mind. He wrote them down and set them to a haunting tune.
That evening, William handed the newly-written words and tune to the soloist. Visibly moved after he had sung them, the man stayed for the sermon, went to the altar that night and gave his heart to Christ. The song b ...

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