Day 3: Parable of the Lost Son | LCBC Church
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  2. The Lost Ones: Luke 15

Day 3: Parable of the Lost Son


Read Luke 15:11-32

Over the last three days we’ve read about how the shepherd saved the lost one out of 100 sheep, the woman saved the lost one out of ten coins, and now the father embracing the lost one out of his two sons - the perceived value Jesus is sharing is going up with each story.

In this story, the lost son behaves in terrible ways. He basically says to his dad, “Let’s pretend you are dead so I can have your money.” Then he leaves town and his family and decides to live in highly offensive and shameful ways, wasting all of the money his father gave him. Incredibly, none of that is enough for the father to reject the son. Like in the other stories, the restoration of the lost son is celebrated.

This story has an added element, the other son. How good is the “good” son? He stays home, obeys his father, and works hard. Neighbors looking from the outside probably say, “It’s a good thing he has that older son!” But does the older son really love his father? If he loved his father, he would rejoice when his father is rejoicing. Instead, he wants his father to love him and reject his brother.

Here we see the father represents Jesus and the sons represent us. A lost son, who rejects Jesus and behaves in ways that are the opposite of what Jesus wants. And an older son, who looks good on the outside, but rejects Jesus’ love for lost people. The self-righteous Pharisees Jesus are talking to back in verses 1-2 are clearly older brothers. Here’s the challenging part, father has two kinds of sons, neither of which are good and loving, but He loves them both anyway!

So which brother are you? Are you living in a way that doesn’t acknowledge Jesus and His standards? Are you living to please Jesus but rejecting the people Jesus loves? If we’re honest, we can be both of these at different times of our life. The good news is that Jesus loves us even when we are like that. We need God to help us be a son or daughter who obeys, but also loves those who don’t obey. How can we be someone who seeks lost sheep, coins, and people?

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