Summary: True faith in God is a humble heart and spirit!
We continue our study of the Gospel of Luke.
Please open your Bibles to Luke 14….
Look at v1…..
Now look at v1 of Luke 15…..
As Jesus Christ was ministering to thousands of people while He was here on earth, He was criticized and accused of being a bad person because He hung out with sinners. Many of Jesus’ critics were the religious leaders, who were prideful and thought they had everything figured out.
Jesus responded to His critics by teaching with parables, stories with lessons.
Let us note that these lessons apply to all of us as well; Jesus’ words are truths for life and eternity for everyone.
A few weeks ago, we noted from Luke 15:3-7 that Jesus Christ is like a good shepherd who will look for a lost sheep and carry it home. People are like sheep; we go astray and get lost. Jesus seeks out people and if they are willing to come home to God, Jesus will carry them.
In Luke 15:8-10 we noted that Jesus is like the woman who carefully and diligently worked to look for her lost coin because she loved that coin. Jesus has worked and continues to work carefully and diligently to find lost people because Jesus loves people!
Last week we took a glimpse at the lesson of the prodigal son in Luke 15:11-24. Jesus is like a loving father who will welcome home with joy a son who has gone astray. The prodigal son represents people who live worldly without God; but God reminds us that everyone is welcome to come back to God no matter how bad our lives might be! God is good?? …. All the time!
Before moving on, let us note a few things:
God does not give up on people and we shouldn’t either. However, did you notice that the father allowed his son to go out in the world and waited patiently for his return? This does not mean that the father never warned his son of the troubles he could get in to. The father certainly loved his son, taught him well, warned him with godly wisdom, but because the son was old enough to go into the world on his own, the father allowed him to go. We parents can learn from this.
The father of the prodigal son is a picture of God and all of us are like the prodigal son. We all need to come to our senses and always go back to God instead of living the ways of the world.
Some of us however, as we made a commitment to God the Father can be like the brother of the prodigal son. Today we will look at this side of the story; the brother who got jealous. Again let us remember that Jesus was teaching a lesson to those religious leaders criticizing Him. What was Jesus trying to teach His critics?
Before reading our passage for this morning, let us pray our commitment to God’s Word ….
Read along with me our passage in Luke 15 starting with v17….
The prodigal son came to his senses, professed his sins and returned home. The prodigal son repented (turned away) from his ungodly ways and his father not only welcomed him back but celebrated!
What do we note from the brother who stayed behind?
v28a: brother was angry and did not join the party
And what can we say about the older brother from the first sentence v29a?
The brother worked hard and did not disobey his father. We can say that the brother religiously did his duties as a son to his father.
But what can we say about the tone of the brother’s statement??
The brother said he’s been slaving and he used the word never; it does not tell us if he really did never disobeyed his father, but we can say he was boasting; the brother was full of pride!
Now look at the last part of v29b…. How did the son feel about all the work he did for his father?
The brother served his father diligently but he was resentful.
The brother served his father grudgingly.
Before we get too hard on this brother, do we ever do things for God with the wrong attitude? There are times when we go to church grudgingly don’t we?
Why was he resentful? Verse 30 gives us a clue doesn’t it?
The brother was jealous of his brother who was forgiven by their father.
And what were the lessons did the father give the son in v31-32?
- The brother should have been content of who he was and what he had!
- The brother should be glad for his brother who repented and now back with the family!
What can we learn from this passage? Jesus told a parable, a story with a lesson. We need to note,