Summary: The Parable of the Prodigal Son brings people to place where, “Their life and His truth collide”.

Title: The Collision of Life and Truth

Text: Luke 15:1-31

Theme: The Parable of the Prodigal Son


A Parable is a short story that conveys a moral truth in a person’s life.

Every parable (1) sketches a setting, (2) describes an action & (3) shows a result. Most parables contain at least one character, choosing a decision and showing a consequence.

1. The Gospels record OVER 30 parables that Jesus told. 1/3 of all his teachings consisted of parables.

Matthew 13:34-35 (New Living Translation)

34 Jesus always used stories and illustrations like these when speaking to the crowds. In fact, he never spoke to them without using such parables. 35 This fulfilled what God had spoken through the prophet:

“I will speak to you in parables. I will explain things hidden since

the creation of the world.” (Quoting Psalm 78:2)

2. Parables brought people to place where, “their life and His truth collided”. It’s a good collision.

A. The Parable of the Prodigal Son

1. Theme of Luke 15 is “Lost Things are Found” – A regression in #’s

a. 100 - The Lost Sheep is found

b. 10 - The Lost Coin is found

c. 1 - The Lost Son is found


The average life expectancy is 79.5 years old.

The average person will spend 1 year looking for lost possessions.

2. The Context of Luke 15:1-2

a. Jesus was eating with tax collectors and sinners

b. Pharisees and teachers of the law muttering

c. “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.”

d. Jesus welcomed the company of sinners

e. Eating was an indication of acceptance and recognition

f. Jesus shared these stories: Lost people matter to God


A pastor shared a story of a couple who left his church because they said “too many sinners went to their church”. It is like being in the hospital & leaving, saying “I am leaving because there are too many sick people here”. Jesus cares about lost people.

A. Read with me Luke 15:11-24

This is the “Blockbuster Parable” of the bible. It is the most preached parable by preachers. This parable preaches itself. Because it is a familiar parable, we cannot allow its impact to soften or be lost.

There are 3 characters in his parable:

The Father, who is a type of God

The lost son, who is a type of sinners or backsliders

The self-righteous brother, who represents the Pharisee

I want to try to get into the psyche of the young man who left home.

So we are going to ask some questions as to….What was he thinking?

B. He demanded all that was allotted to him

V. 12 – “Father give me the share of property that is coming to me.”

At this point he was thinking, “I want MORE than this”.

1. He was ambitious to have his freedom/no restraints.

He “told” what he wanted and did not “ask” for advice.

*According to Jewish law, a father who had two sons was to leave 2/3 of his estate to his older son and 1/3 to his younger son.

2. It wasn’t an overnight decision. A decision he pondered f months. He thought out this decision for a while.

- Nobody wakes up one morning and says, “I think I will wreck my life today” or “Today’s a good day to devastate my family, so my spouse will leave me and my kids will visit once a month”. It’s a slow leak rather than a sudden blowout!

3. The Father gives him what he asked – The scary thing is that God gives the freedom &

independence you desire. It is called self will.

4. God loves you so much He will never force you to stay in fellowship with Him against your own will.

Romans 1:24-26 – God gave them over to their passions & lusts

STORY: Thursday night I was talking to a man who are a deeply committed Christian, as well as his wife. This past week his wife walked away from the marriage fellowship and involved herself in sexual sin and committed adultery. He asked me why God did not step in and stop her. I said God loves her so much He allowed her to make her own choices, even though He knows what the consequences will be.

5. He took all and headed for a distant country – set off in the wrong direction with no intention of ever coming back.

6. Have you ever headed in the wrong direction?

Maybe it was decision you made, counsel you rejected or a decision that someone

pressured you into doing. After you realized that it was a brutal mistake.

C. He sunk farther than he had expected –

Maybe the young man was thinking…“I can’t BELIEVE this”

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