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Lost (Prodigal) Son - Luke 15:29-32

Lesson # Lost (Prodigal) Son - Luke 15:29-32
Study Material - Lost (Prodigal) Son - Luke 15:29-32

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Lost (Prodigal) Son
Luke 15:29-32

29 And [de] he answering [apokrinomai] said [epo] to his father [pater] , Lo [idou] , these many [tosoutos] years [etos] do I serve [douleuo] thee [soi] , neither [oudepote] transgressed I [parerchomai] at any time [oudepote] thy [sou] commandment [entole] : and [kai] yet [kai] thou [didomi] never [oudepote] gavest [didomi] me [emoi] a kid [eriphos] , that [hina] I might make merry [euphraino] with [meta] my [mou] friends [philos] :
30 But [de] as soon as [hote] this [houtos] thy [sou] son [huios] was come [erchomai] , which [ho] hath devoured [katesthio] thy [sou] living [bios] with [meta] harlots [porne] , thou hast killed [thuo] for him [autos] the fatted [siteutos] calf [moschos] .
31 And [de] he said [epo] unto him [autos] , Son [teknon] , thou [su] art [ei] ever [pantote] with [meta] me [emou] , and [kai] all [pas] that I have [emos] is [esti] thine [sos] .
32 It was [de] meet [dei] that we should make merry [euphraino] , and [kai] be glad [chairo] : for [hoti] this [houtos] thy [sou] brother [adelphos] was [en] dead [nekros] , and [kai] is alive again [anazao] ; and [kai] was [en] lost [apollumi] , and [kai] is found [heurisko] . KJV-Interlinear

29 'But he answered and said to his father, 'Look! For so many years I have been serving you, and I have never neglected a command of yours; and yet you have never given me a kid, that I might be merry with my friends; 30 but when this son of yours came, who has devoured your wealth with harlots, you killed the fattened calf for him.' 31 'And he said to him, 'My child, you have always been with me, and all that is mine is yours. 32 'But we had to be merry and rejoice, for this brother of yours was dead and has begun to live, and was lost and has been found.'' NASB

The Bible must be interpreted with regard to the consistency of its whole. You cannot take apart individual verses and draw conclusions separate from the principle theme of the scriptures. There is only one way of salvation and that is through believing in Jesus Christ.

Now here we have a parable. It is a short story with a principle being taught. It is not salvation, but an attitude principle which is in view here.

The Father is God of course, but God has an attitude toward mankind and that attitude does not change regardless of mans personality or beliefs. If you believe in Christ you will be saved. If you do not, then you will go to the Lake of Fire - by your own choice. By rejecting God, you in effect state that you do not want to associate with God in eternity. God graciously permits you to have your choice.

God goes one step further and discloses to everyone that a life without God is no life at all. God is the glue which holds the universe together. Without the glue, then you have disintegration and chaos. No person can do what God does. So with this caution and warning, people can make clear choices to either live with God, who demonstrates complete and unparalleled love and provision, or you can make the choice to live in oblivion apart from God where you will encounter total terror and darkness. No individual can create a comfortable living environment for themselves. The latter choice is not a smart choice.

The two sons represent the two opposite ends of the human carnal nature. One son, the younger, is the rebellious one, and the elder son is the self righteous one.

God treats both the same. God withholds nothing from either. God is willing to give abundantly to each. Remember that we defined abundance is a prior lesson as that which is far more than one can possibly use in a lifetime, and a lifetime is eternity. So the provision is beyond ones imagination.

The hearers of this parable are the Pharisees who took exception to Jesus' associations with the 'sinners' of the land.

So the Pharisees have had the scriptures for all their lives. As a sect they have had the scriptures for centuries, but they being selfish, have performed their ritual duties with the expectations of receiving just payment in the future. They try to get into heaven on the basis of their own works, not on the works of Jesus Christ.

The elder complained and stated nearly the same response as the rich young ruler, 'All these things have I kept from my youth up.' Also, we studied the camel going through the eye of the needle as an easier task than a rich person getting into heaven. Turning ones back on the values of this life and embracing Gods values is not an easy task.

The elder complained that he had been faithful and did his duties faithfully, but these things he did under his own definition of 'good,' not in accordance with Gods definition.

Both sons had the provisions of this world within which to live their chosen lives. Both could have been responsible to God, or not. Initially neither were responsible to God. But neither should have had any grievances against the other since neither interfered with the life of the other.

Both sons had the resources of the world with which to live their lives. And as such they both had the freedom to function within the world in accordance with the rules of the world. The younger chose a course in which the jungle of the world swallowed Him up. The elder took a different course complying more or less with the way the world operates. He worked, he was paid, he lived his life. He still had to contend with illness, weather, the economics of the agriculture environment in which he lived. He would still have to buy and sell the fruits of his labor in the open market, get supplies, supervise employees and so forth.

The functions of the world God allows. God has even gone one step further to set up controls over the functions of the world. We call these controls, divine establishment rules. These operate as an offset to the rules of the jungle to help keep the world from crumbling altogether.

The elder son lacked nothing, yet he maintained his arrogant attitude. He would not even acknowledge the prodigal as his brother, and with bitter scorn and disrespect he speaks of him to his Father as 'thy son.' Now who is the jerk? Didn't Adam say something similar in the Garden, ' The woman that 'you' gave to me.' As though life's problems are all Gods fault.

Luke 18:11
11 'The Pharisee stood and was praying thus to himself, 'God, I thank Thee that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax-gatherer. NASB

So when the younger returned, the elder had no right nor any basis for his attitude of ill feelings against him. Yet the elder hated the younger simply because he was receiving some attention from his Father. That is kind of how two year olds behave when competing for attention from their parents.

The elder did not lose anything, nor was his life in jeopardy of losing anything. The elder had the same opportunities of access to the Father as did the younger.

Now for the application of the principle to the Pharisees. The parable was intended to come to a happy conclusion where both sons and the Father would all be reunited. All that was required was for the elder to repent (change his attitude) and as it were, comply with the rules of the Father.

In real life the Pharisees need only change their attitude toward God and the correct interpretation of the scriptures. At this point in time a few believed in Christ, but it would be clear when the next Passover occurred, that most of the Pharisees rejected the parables point, as they rose up against their reconciling themselves to the Fathers plan by taking Jesus to the Cross. Not only this, but in due course (some forty years later) there would be another test of wills, and the walls of Jerusalem would fall on the Pharisees.

Negative volition toward God makes an individual impertinent, hateful, selfish, conceited, jealous over virtually nothing, envious, and just a down right thorough jerk. Though they will never see themselves as such.

The arrogant and self righteous person generally has more difficulty changing their attitude especially when life does not place much in the way of pressure on them.

The person who is pressed to the wall with difficulties is generally the one who will turn to God because of the trouble in their life.

So evaluate your own life and make the application of this parable to yourself. Don't be judgmental. Don't be selfish or greedy in life. Don't be so competitive in your life that you will do anything (disregarding God) to get ahead. Most of all, don't be so rigid in your life so as to throw away your eternal future over something in this world which in reality amounts to nothing.

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End Of Lesson

Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.

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