Day 13 – A story about two sons (part 2)

Bible reading: Luke 15:25–32

25 While these things were happening, the older son was working in the field. On his way back to the house, he heard music. People were dancing. 26 So he asked one of the servants, “What is happening?” 27 The servant replied, “Your brother has returned home. Your father has killed the fat young cow for him. He did this because your brother is alive and he is well.” 28 When the older brother heard this, he was very angry. He would not go into the house. So his father came out. “Please come in to be happy with us,” he said. 29 “Listen,” the older son replied, “I have worked a lot for you for many years. I have always obeyed you. But you never even killed a young goat for me so that I could be happy with my friends. We could have had a meal together. 30 But now this other son of yours has returned. He has wasted all the money that you gave to him. He has spent it on prostitutes. But you have even killed the fat young cow for him.” 31 “My son,” his father said, “you are always with me. All the things that I have are yours. 32 We thought that your brother was dead. But now he has returned to us alive. We thought that he had left us for all time. But now he has come home. So we must all be happy together.” ’

15:32In this story, the father is like God. He lets us do what we want. We may do many bad things, but he waits for us to come back. He waits for us to turn away from bad things. When we turn back to him, he is very happy. The older brother was like the Pharisees. Many of them thought that they had never done anything wrong. So, they were not happy when bad people came to Jesus.

Luke 15:25-32 EasyEnglish Bible (EASY)

Reflection

But don’t miss the next part. Then came the older brother who had been working away on the farm for his father. He couldn’t understand what all the celebration was about. When he discovered it was to welcome home his foolish younger brother, he was furious. He refused to go in to the party. His father came out to persuade him – notice the father’s humility once again.

‘All these years I have worked hard for you. I always do what you ask. And you never even gave me a young goat for a meal with my friends,’ complains the older brother. ‘But when this son of yours (he refuses to say that he’s his brother) comes home after spending his money on prostitutes, you kill the special calf in his honour!’

Did he have a good reason for talking like this? No. The father loves him just as much as the foolish one. But he needs to see that being obedient and keeping rules without love can be a definite way to reject the heavenly Father. It is just as same as living in a foolish way.

Just two different ways of rebellion, that’s all. There was not one lost son in that damaged family, but two. And God’s attitude to us is one of love and welcome. It’s the same, whether we reject him by our cold, proud opinions of ourselves as we scorn others. Or whether we reject him by our selfish way of living as we want. What other faith shows you a God like that?