Join Us Today!

Join our non-denominational community with 10,000+ members and more than 50,000 monthly visitors today. Engage in bible discussions, studies, prayer support and friendly fellowship.

Prodigal Son

Discussion in 'Parables of Jesus' started by Chad, Mar 2, 2009.

  1. The Prodigal Son (Lk 15:11-32)

    INTRODUCTION

    1. With the parable of "The Prodigal Son", Jesus reaches the apex in His response to the charge against Him by the Pharisees and scribes...
    a. Their accusation? "This man receives sinners and eats with them." - Lk 15:2
    b. His response? Three parables in which He illustrates "The Father's Yearning Love For The Lost" (Hendriksen)...
    1) "The Lost Sheep" - Lk 15:3-7
    2) "The Lost Coin" - Lk 15:8-10
    3) "The Prodigal Son" - Lk 15:11-32
    2. The parable of "The Prodigal Son" has been called...
    a. "The pearl and crown of all the parables" (Trench)
    b. Evangelium in Evangelio (i.e., The Gospel within the Gospel)
    3. While it is commonly called "The Prodigal Son" (prodigal meaning "wasteful")...
    a. It can rightfully be called the parable of "The Loving Father" (Wiersbe)
    b. For it reveals more about the love of the father than of the sinfulness of the younger son
    4. The parable also reveals much about the heart of the unforgiving elder son, whose purpose in this parable is to rebuke those unwilling to reach out and receive the lost who repent

    [Let's begin our study of this "pearl and crown of all the parables" by reading it in its entirety, and then examining its major features (please read Lk 15:11-32)...]

    I. ANALYZING THE PARABLE OF "THE PRODIGAL SON"

    A. HIS DEPARTURE FROM HOME - Lk 15:11-13a
    1. The younger son asks his father to give him his portion of the inheritance due him
    a. According to the Law of Moses, the eldest son received a double portion - cf. Deut 21:17
    b. Since there were two sons, the younger son would receive one-third
    2. Like so many impatient young people today, the younger son...
    a. Desired to be free from parental restraints
    b. Desired to have his father's inheritance "now"
    3. The father grants him his request, and the younger son soon takes all that he has to a distant country

    B. HIS LIFE ABROAD - Lk 15:13b-19
    1. With "prodigal" (wasteful, extravagant) living, he soon depletes his possessions
    2. His poverty is complicated by a famine striking the country
    3. In desperation, he hires himself to another to feed his pigs
    a. This would be most degrading to a Jew, for pigs were considered unclean - cf. Lev 11:7
    b. According to Hendriksen, there was a saying current among the Jews at that time: "May a curse come upon the man who cares for swine!"
    c. With great hunger, he would have gladly eaten what was given to the pigs
    4. He finally comes to his senses...
    a. Recalling how well fed were his father's hired servants
    b. They had plenty, and here he was, perishing with hunger! -- So to hunger and humiliation, there is now added homesickness
    5. He resolves to return home...
    a. To confess his sin against heaven (i.e., God's will) and his father
    b. To confess his unworthiness to be called his father's son
    c. To be made only like one of his father's hired servants
    C. HIS RETURN HOME - Lk 15:20-32
    1. Warmly welcomed by his father - Lk 15:20-24
    a. Carrying out his resolution, the prodigal son returns home
    b. While still a great way away, the father sees him (had he been looking for his son?)
    c. The father's great love is immediately evident...
    1) He has compassion
    2) He runs to greet his son
    3) He throws his arms around his son's neck
    4) He kisses him
    d. The son quickly confesses his sin, and his unworthiness to be called a son
    e. But before he can even say "Make me one of your hired servants", the father joyfully calls upon his servants to...
    1) Bring out the best robe and put it on him
    2) Put a ring on his hand, and sandals on his feet
    3) Kill the fatted calf in order to celebrate his return -- All of which serve to reinstate the son as a person of importance and authority
    f. What this means to the father is touchingly summarized in these words...
    1) "for this my son was dead and is alive again"
    2) "he was lost and is found" -- Certainly any parent can relate to the emotions expressed by this father!
    2. Jealously rejected by his brother - Lk 15:25-32
    a. The elder son, returning from the field, wonders what the celebration is about
    b. When told by one of the servants, he angrily refuses to go in
    c. The father comes out, and pleads with him...
    1) The elder son's complaints:
    a) For many years he had served his father
    b) He had never transgressed his father's will
    c) The father had never provided such a celebration for him
    d) But when the son who squandered his father's inheritance with harlots returns home, the fatted calf is killed for him!-- Isn't it easy to sympathize with the elder son?
    2) The father's response:
    a) Note first how tenderly the father treats THIS son (addressing him as "child" in the Greek)
    b) He recognizes the elder son's faithfulness ("you are always with me")
    c) He reassures the son that the remaining inheritance is his ("all that I have is yours")
    d) Yet the father maintains that it is right to celebrate...
    1/ "your brother..." (note the contrast)
    a/ The elder son had called his brother, "this son of yours"
    b/ The father emphasizes the brotherly relation, "your brother"
    2/ "...was dead and is alive again, and was lost and is found." (repeating what was said to the servants in Lk 15:24)
    [So ends this "pearl and crown" of all the parables, leaving us with a sharp contrast between the love of the father and the jealousy of the elder brother. No further explanation is given, but none is really needed if we just contemplate upon this parable in its context.

    But to make sure we don't overlook the obvious, just a few thoughts in regards to...]

    II. APPLYING THE PARABLE OF "THE PRODIGAL SON"

    A. THE MAIN ELEMENTS ARE EASILY DISCERNED...
    1. The father symbolizes our heavenly Father
    2. The prodigal son in coming home represents the penitent sinner
    3. The elder brother reflected the attitude of the self-righteous Pharisees and scribes - cf. Lk 15:2

    B. THE KEY LESSONS SHOULD BE EVIDENT AS WELL...
    1. Our heavenly Father loves His children
    a. Even when they turn away from Him, His hearts yearns for them in love
    b. But especially when they return with a penitent attitude
    1) There is "joy in heaven" - Lk 15:7
    2) There is "joy in the presence of the angels of God" - Lk 15:10
    3) It was right to "make merry and be glad" - Lk 15:32
    2. The faithful children of God need to understand the proper way to receive the erring child who returns to God
    a. Not with any sibling jealousy, but with joyous celebration! - Lk 15:32
    b. With a strong reaffirmation of love:
    1) As illustrated by the father in the parable
    2) As Paul instructed the Corinthians in 2Co 2:6-8
    CONCLUSION

    1. "The Prodigal Son", along with the two previous parables, was told by Jesus to teach these important lessons to the Pharisees and scribes

    2. Yet while directed toward them, imagine how these parables comforted the hearts of those "tax collectors and sinners" who had drawn near to Jesus to hear Him! - Lk 15:1
    a. Though considered unacceptable by the religious elite, they learned that they could be accepted by God!
    b. That God was seeking for them, and would lovingly receive them if they would repent! -- Is this the same message we convey to those lost in sin, but who are willing to draw near and listen to the gospel?
    3. We must never forget that it was Jesus who said:

    "Those who are well do not need a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance." (Lk 5:31-32)

    Dear friend, have you like the prodigal son "come to himself", realizing how far one falls when they turn away from God?

    May you be moved to repentance this by parable, "the gospel within the gospel"; and may you never forget that your heavenly Father anxiously awaits your reconciliation with Him!

    Together with God, we offer you the gospel of Christ (cf. Mk 16:15-16) as a message of reconciliation:

    "Therefore we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ's behalf, be reconciled to God." (2Co 5:20)
     
    rag4aCrown likes this.
  2. Love it Chad!

    haven't we all been there at one time or other, and to some degree.

    I for one am so thankful that even when we are unfaithful, God remains faithful.

    As a child I was abandoned, and at the age of 13 was basically left to figure out Life, and what to do with it all on my own.
    Hurt, and scared I turned my back on God, for I blamed him for what my Mother had done.
    Her false accusations cut me like a knife, and I said in my heart, "If that is what God does for you, I want no part of him."

    For 10 years I wondered in the wilderness, but He never let me go.
    He was there all the time, and at just the right time ,called me home.
    He never forsook me, and like the prodigals Father was just watching and waiting , and received me back with loving ,open arms.

    He Loves us so very much, and is patient, and long suffering, never forsakes us , faithful in all his promises, and I for one, Love him so!

    What a privilege we have, to belong to The King of Kings, and to be loved so by him.:friends::love:
     
    rag4aCrown likes this.
  3. When God Ran

    I have been the prodigal son as well.

    Has anyone heard a song by Phillips, Craig and Dean called
    "When God Ran".

    Read the story of the prodigal son, then listen to this song.
    See if you can keep your eyes dry.
     
  4. When God Ran

    Almighty God, the great I am
    Immovable rock, omnipotent, powerful, awesome Lord
    Victorious warrior, commanding King of Kings
    Mighty conqueror, and the only time
    the only time I ever saw Him run

    CHORUS:
    Was when He ran to me, He took me in His arms
    Held my head to His chest, said “My son’s come home again”
    Lifted my face, wiped the tears from my eyes
    With forgiveness in His voice He said,
    “Son do you know I still love you?”
    He caught me by surprise when God ran

    The day I left home I knew I’d broken His heart
    And I wondered then if things could ever be the same
    Then one night I remembered His love for me
    And down that dusty road ahead I could see
    It was the only time – it was the only time I ever saw Him run

    And then He ran to me, He took me in His arms
    Held my head to His chest, said “My son’s come home again”
    Lifted my face, wiped the tears from my eyes
    With forgiveness in His voice He said,
    “Son do you know I still love you?”
    He caught me by surprise as He brought me to my knees
    When God ran – I saw Him run to me

    BRIDGE:
    I was so ashamed, all alone and so far away
    But now I know He’s been waiting for this day

    I saw Him run to me, He took me in His arms
    Held my head to His chest, said “My son’s come home again”
    Lifted my face, wiped the tears from my eyes
    With forgiveness in His voice I felt His love for me again

    He ran to me, He took me in His arms
    Held my head to His chest, said “My son’s come home again”
    Lifted my face, wiped the tears from my eyes
    With forgiveness in His voice He said, “Son”, He called me Son
    He said, “Son do you know I still love you?”
    He ran to me and then I ran to Him
    When God ran
     
  5. Amen, The story of our lives........Praise God!
     
  6. Did my message from here yesterday, love this story.

    NC
     
  7. Amen: a very important message for Gods people, and how they should forgive one another their trespasses. We also see the glorious grace of God in this.

    God bless
     
  8. The Prodigal son is the Gentiles, they will one day obey God's commandment.

    Then the jealous son is the Jews, because they are going to say, they have kept all the Fathers's commandments.

    Moreover the Father will say to the jealous son
    Luk 15:31 'My son,' the father answered, 'you are always here with me, and everything I have is yours.

    What is God's commandments?

    Luk 1:5 In the days of King Herod of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly order of Abijah. His wife was a descendant of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.
    Luk 1:6 Both of them were righteous in the sight of God, and they lived blamelessly according to all of the commandments and regulations of the Lord.

    I doubt there is NT at that time, NT was written 200 years after Christ.

    What is the Law and Commandments of God?

    Its the 1st five books of Moses.

    Check the Bible yourself and research on what I have shared.

    The Messiah is not the End of the Law.

    Rom 10:4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness for everyone who believes.

    The word end there is not something that is over or finish.

    The Greek word there is Telos meaning:

    τέλος
    telos
    tel'-os
    From a primary word τέλλω tellō (to set out for a definite point or goal); properly the point aimed at as a limit, that is, (by implication) the conclusion of an act or state (termination [literally, figuratively or indefinitely], result [immediate, ultimate or prophetic], purpose); specifically an impost or levy (as paid): - + continual, custom, end (-ing), finally, uttermost. Compare G5411.

    It actually means: Goal.

    Lets retranslate that verse.

    Rom 10:4 For Christ is the "Goal" of the law for righteousness for everyone who believes.

    God Bless.

    Num 6:24 May the LORD bless you and take care of you;
    Num 6:25 May the LORD be kind and gracious to you;
    Num 6:26 May the LORD look on you with favor and give you peace.

    Amen
     

Share This Page

Users Who Have Read This Thread (Total: 0)