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Many of you are familiar the lyrics to the song “Detroit City”. The First line goes “I wanna go home. I wanna go home, oh how I wanna go home.” In Luke 15, Christ tells the story of a young man who could have easily written those words. The story of this young man provides encouragement for anyone here that has become homesick for the life that they once enjoyed as a child of God.
I. His Departure
A. Verses 12-13, “"And the younger of them said to [his] father, 'Father, give me the portion of goods that falls to me.' So he divided to them his livelihood. And not many days after, the younger son gathered all together, journeyed to a far country…”
B. There could have been many reasons why he left home.
C. He may have left out of jealousy or envy toward his older brother. After all his older brother was to be the one who would by his birthright receive his father’s inheritance.
1. Proverbs 14:30 “A sound heart is life to the body, but envy is rottenness to the bones.”
2. Biblical examples include:
a. Genesis 4:5-7 Cain and Abel
b. Genesis 27:36-41 Jacob and Esau
c. Genesis 37:11 Joseph and his brothers
d. Matthew 20:1-16 The Laborers in the field
e. Luke 9:46-50 The Disciples
3. Envy - describes pain felt and malignity conceived at the sight of excellence or happiness. It means not just wanting what another person has, but also resenting that person for having it.To envy another is to show spiteful malice and resentment over another’s advantage.
4. Jealousy and envy –jealousy makes us fear to lose what we possess, while envy creates sorrow that others have what we do not have.
D. He may have left out of rebellion to be told what to do. He was the younger and both his father and brother would have been telling him what he should or should not do.
1. Mark Twain once said, "When your child turns 13, stick him in a barrel, place a lid on top, and feed him through the knothole. When he turns 16, seal up the knothole."
2. Psalms 25:7: "Remember not the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you are good, O LORD."
3. Romans 13:1 “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.”
4. 1 Peter 5:5 “Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to [your] elders. Yes, all of [you] be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for "God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble."
E. He may have left out of discontentment and boredom from living what he saw as a dull, dreary life on the farm.
1. We are living in a time of dissatisfaction. It is a major disease in America. People are not happy, regardless of their place or condition.
2. Discontentment always searches for the nearest exit sign. God leads you into His Will. Discontentment drives you out of His will. Discontentment points us to a place where God isn’t leading. - Kent Crockett, I Once Was Blind But Now I Squint
3. Hebrews 13:5 “Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, "I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
F. He may have left as a result of the allurement of the world.
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