STORY OF THE PRODIGAL AND THE ELDER SON

 

Text: Luke 15:11-32
In this passage Jesus is telling the story of two brothers who went wrong in their life because of their bad attitudes

The younger son "messed up his life when he went away from the father's house. The elder son stayed with the father and continued working for the father.

One day the younger boy confronted his father and asked for his share of the estate to be given to him immediately. The boy wanted to be free. He didn't like living at home in the father's house. It meant parental control. He wanted to shake loose of this control. Perhaps he wanted to go to the dining table and not have to answer questions concerning his activities.

  1. "Where did you go last night?"
  2. What did you do?
  3. Who were you with?
  4. What time did you get home?

Father's house had rules and the younger son wanted to be free from restrictions and rules. He had in his mind that when he left father's house he could "call the shots". He could make his own decisions and where he could go and what he could do.

Have you ever noticed that the dearest word in our vocabulary is freedom. Most everyone desires to act as they please at the time of their choosing and in a manner which best suits them. We really don't like others telling us what to do. I know some people who simply detest working under an authority structure because they feel that rules and guidelines would fence them in and limit their freedom.

For many today freedom can be explained by looking at a person facing a weekend. "Hey, it's Friday and I have a billfold full of money." They are going to leave behind a schedule. They are thinking to themself, "This is the life. I am free to do as I wish, spend my money as I wish and do as I wish." This is the "freedom attitude This was the attitude of the younger son.

Now the father could have said to him, "Son, I don't like your attitude so you are not going to receive your inheritance at this time". But this would have made the son hostile. So the father gave him the freedom to go and "do his thing." The father knew that this son had some painful experiences ahead. Also, he knew that this son would learn that riotious living had consequences.

So the boy was release from the restraints of his father's house and took his share of the family wealth. He travelled into the far country away from his home. If we were to question this young lad as to the reasons of why he found it difficult to live under father's rules and authority I am sure he would give a number of reasons. Yet - that would not be the real reason. The reality was the boy's heart was corrupted. He just wanted to do life "his way".

Let's face it. All the problems of mankind stem from "we want to do our own thing our own way" forget the consequences. Forget Father God's instructions. I have the gift of choice and I am responsible and accountable for that choice. To live under the Kingdom rules and submit to the authority of Christ limits my freedom.

 

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