A Parable about Prodigal Sons and Their Father

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작성자 카마리오한인연합감리교회 작성일23-06-02 13:04 조회470회 댓글0건


Date: 5/28/23

Sermon Title: A Parable about Prodigal Sons and Their Father

Context: Luke 15:31-32

(Luke 15:31) "'My son,' the father said, 'you are always with me, and everything I have is yours.

(Luke 15:32) 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.' "



Preaching Note  

1. Little Son's Debauchery

Today's passage, in which Jesus speaks in parables, begins with the appearance of the Father. The father has two sons (v. 11). The younger of the two sons speaks to the father (v. 12). ‘Father, give me my share of the property.’ The father divides the property between the two sons. The younger son goes to a distant country and wastes his possessions living riotously (v. 13). When he squandered all his possessions, there was a great famine in the country, and he became very poor (v. 14). He goes to a man, entrusts himself to him, and herds swine in his house (v. 15). He wanted to eat some of the pigs' food and fill his stomach, but no one gave him food (v. 16).

     He comes to his senses and says: ‘My father’s many hired men have more than enough to eat, but here I am starving to death (v. 17). I will get up and go back to my father and tell him this. Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you (v. 18). Make me one of your hirelings, for I am no longer worthy to be called your son’ (v. 19).


2. Father's Generous Love

The younger son goes to his father (v. 20). While he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was moved with compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him on the mouth. The son speaks to the father (v. 21). ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. From now on I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ The father said to his servants. ‘Come on, take out your best robe, put it on him, put a ring on his hand, and put sandals on his feet (v. 22). Then bring out the fattened calf and kill it. Let us eat and be merry (v. 23). This my son was dead, and is alive; he was lost, and I have found him.’ They have a feast (v. 24).


3. Eldest Son's Wrath

The older son returns from the field, and as he approaches the house, he hears music and dancing (v. 25). He calls one of his servants and asks what is going on (v. 26). He says ‘Your brother has returned home. He was glad to be back in good health, so the master made fattened calves for food. (v. 27). The older son is angry and refuses to go into the house, and his father comforts him (v. 28).

     The older son says his father. ‘I have been serving you for so many years, and I have never disobeyed your orders, and you have not given me even a kid to enjoy with my friends (v. 29). But when this son who ate up all your property with prostitutes comes, you slaughtered the fattened calf for him’ (v. 30).

     The father says to his older son. ‘My son, you are always with me, so everything I have is yours (v. 31). But your brother was dead and is alive; he was lost and is back. It is right for us to enjoy and rejoice’ (v. 32).


4. Love and forgiveness

The central character of this parable by Jesus is not the two prodigal sons, but the father who accepts the two prodigal sons with love and forgiveness. The word given to us through the father, the ‘parable of the father’, is that we must treat sinners with love and forgiveness, just as the father forgave his two prodigal sons with abundant love. 

     The Father in this parable is God. In the parable, the father's willingness to give to his second son when he asked for property is the image of God who wants to give us good things. The image of a father constantly looking in the direction of the region where his second son went is the image of God who looks at us with affection every day. When the second son comes back, he runs and hugs him as hard as he can, regardless of his face. This is the image of God warmly embracing us. The image of a father holding a feast for his son who has returned is the image of God inviting us to a feast in the kingdom of God. The image of a father urging his eldest son to return to the feast is the God image urging us to return to the place of love and forgiveness.


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