Author: Ron Graham
In this lesson, we consider our Lord’s parable about the son who rebelled, then remembered (Luke 15:11-32).
The parable of the wayward son illustrates the separation of the sinner from God, and the sinner’s restoration to God. "I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents" (Luke 15:10). The story illustrates how a sinner can remember his Father, return and be restored. This is a fitting passage with which to start our series of lessons called “Remember”.
As you read the story, what stages do you see the prodigal son going through? Some suggestions are shown below. Your analysis might differ from this, but not in any essential. The turning point was when the son remembered his father and wanted to return. Of course he could — and should — have done it sooner, however the story shows that it is never too late to remember our Father and return to him, for his love suffers long.
|Lost Son’s Stages|
|R E M E M B E R E D|
Having considered the parable of the lost son, and how he remembered and repented, it is fitting to remind ourselves of God’s two paths to pardon --that is to say what God requires sinners to do in order to have their sins forgiven through Jesus Christ, God's perfectly obedient and righteous Son. (He also went away from his Father and his home, but not in rebellion).
What we should do in our repentance, depends on whether we are sinners who have not yet become Christians, or Christians who have gone astray and have again become sinners. God's requirements in each case are different.
In this story we see the father’s attitude toward his son. They of course reflect our heavenly Father’s attitude toward us when we stray. We should never forget these things about God...