The Prodigal Son

Scripture: Luke 15:11-32

You will learn about the parable of the Prodigal Son in this video clip about Jesus Christ. This is one of the more descriptive and detailed parables that Jesus related. There are many real-life applications on many levels. First of all, we’ll summarize the story, then provide some analysis below.

The Prodigal Son is a story about a rich man with 2 sons. The oldest son was obedient and very loyal to his father. The younger son was restless and ready to go out into the world and experience life; he was not very obedient and was reckless. The younger son approached the father and wanted his inheritance so he could leave and go to the outside world that he so longed for. After receiving his inheritance, he left to a far-away land. He then spent his money in partying and having a good time until he ran out of money. Then there arose a famine in the land, and the son didn’t have any food to eat. He took a job with a swine herder and fed pigs. He was so hungry that he would have loved to have eaten the food the pigs were eating. One day, he thought to himself, my father’s servants are treated much better and eat better than I do. So, he left at once to become a servant for his father. When he wasn’t quite home, his father saw him, ran to him and was overjoyed to see him. The father killed the fatted calf because his son had returned home. Everything seemed to be good - the lost son was now found. However, the older son became very jealous. He had always been loyal to his father and his father had never killed a fatted calf for him. Upon expressing his jealousy, his father said, “Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine” (Luke 15:31).

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Analysis of the Prodigal Son Parable:

Lessons we can learn from the Prodigal Son parable: 1. If we stray from the right path and become rebellious, God is always waiting for us to repent and return with open arms. 2. Don’t be judgmental and critical of those who have sinned; they may repent and return to God someday. Although God is thrilled that a sinner has repented, it doesn’t make Him love the righteous any less. 3. If others gain a reward or recognition, it doesn’t take away from our own happiness (unless we let ourselves become jealous and bitter). 4. All of us have been like the Prodigal Son in some way and at some time in our lives. Let us be thankful God is merciful and always wants us to return with open arms. Let us remember those lessons the next time we start thinking critically of someone who appears to be “worse” than we are.

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By Dave Clark