Summary: THE PARABLE OF THE PRODIGAL SON
WORKING MY WAY BACK TO YOU
TRANSITION TO THE TEXT
I believe that no parable in the entire Bible has been preached or taught as much as the Parable of the Prodigal son. The parable of the prodigal son is one of the greatest and most-beloved stories ever told in the human language. This parable illustrates to us that God loves and reaches out to the most wasteful of men, and that He runs to embrace any reckless son or daughter who repents and returns home. This parable touches all of us because there is a bit of rebelliousness, recklessness in all of us. We are blessed/cursed with the privilege of choice; and anytime we are left on our own to make a choice; I me and mine dominates our thinking. C’mon now, we have to admit that self thinks about self-first. What self wants is what self-strives to get at any cost. Like so many today, the young man in the text craved material things. Now, this was not wrong to do, but coveting something so bad you are willing to violate your principles just a little, leads to one’s undoing.
UNLOAD THE TEXT
There was a man who had two sons. The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them. (Hold up) He was a young man but he was a grown man! He should have been out on his own, making his way in the world. But no, he could not even wait for his father to pass on to glory to receive his inheritance he instead insisted that his father give him his portion now. He didn’t want his father to ask him any questions; He didn’t want his father to give him any argument; He didn’t even want his father to give him any instructions. He wasn’t thinking about whether his decision to leave would hurt his mother, father or brother.
THE PRODIGAL WANTED TWO THINGS
He said “Give me my inheritance.” He wanted money and the things of the estate which he was to inherit. He wanted to get all the father would give him so that he could enjoy it now. He had not earned it, therefore he didn’t deserve it. He was selfish and self-centered, rude and unkind. He didn’t say “please” nor “may I have?” He just said “Give me.” Secondly, he was really saying, “Give me my independence.” This is what the prodigal was really after, the right to run his own life. He was tied down to his father’s property, and was held responsible for the care of his father’s property. He wanted to cut loose to be away from the father and away from the responsibility of the property. He wanted to live his own life and do his own thing. His appetite craved sensual enjoyment and make belief pleasures away from home. He was interested in self-satisfaction with no regards for the high cost or the consequences in the end. Home life became a bore to him and parental restraints irritated him. He felt like being out on his own, he would have all the freedom he wanted. He felt that being out on his own with possessions in hand would enhance his popularity. He thought being away in a far country would make him a real man. He thought that his father was too demanding and requiring too much of him; He felt that his father just didn’t understand him.
Let me take some pulpit liberty this morning and say, “He was probably encouraged by some outsiders older than himself.” They probably told him he was a grown man now, and that he should be out on his own. They probably told Him that he was not a baby tied to his mother’s apron strings. They probably told him that what his father held in trust was his and he should get it and be independent. They probably told him, “Get what is yours and get it now, and get going. Don’t be chicken, be a man. With what you have coming to you, you could put the whole world under your feet.”
They probably told him, “The high class and the socialites would gladly embrace you and welcome you with open arms.” They probably told him, “You would have money to burn if you had the nerve to tell your father, “Give me what is mine. Your father has servants and you could have servants too. Your father rides in a chariot and you could ride in one too. ”You don’t know what you are missing man, the world is just waiting to show you a good time and what living is all about. You could wine and dine with the upper crust, if you had what was yours. Man, you don’t know what living is sitting here under your father’s thumb.”