We have been covering the Lord’s parable of the Prodigal Son. He got his inheritance and immediately left home for a far country. He lived immorally and wantonly in a foreign country. Today we will learn of the Prodigal Son’s revival.
I like to think of Luke 15:17-19 as “Humility in the Hog Pen.” I like the wording, “And when he came to himself…” in Verse 17. The prodigal Son suddenly realized that his hog pen experience was not necessary. He needed not to be so destitute. Everything that he needed was at his father’s house.
As with the Prodigal Son, what a glorious moment it is when a prodigal Christian awakens to the truth of their self-inflicted predicament. It is a grand spiritual revival when a prodigal Christian realizes his waywardness and hastens home to the Father.
After regaining reality the Prodigal Son made three resolutions. (1) I will return to my father. (2) I will admit that I have sinned before God and my father. (3) I will ask my father to take me back as a hired servant because I am not worthy to be called a son. Wow, what a change of heart. The Prodigal Son was completely taken over with true repentance.
Like the Prodigal Son prodigal Christians must come to loathe their spiritual “hog pen” situation. They must painfully realize they are not where they ought to be either physically or spiritually. They must feel a burning desire to rush back home – back to Father God.
The Prodigal Son’s father is waiting with forgiveness in Verse 20. Doubtless, as the Prodigal Son raced home his emotions and thoughts were mixed. Surely he was excited about returning home but he held doubts about his father’s reaction. Regardless of the uncertainty the Prodigal son was resolved to face and accept whatever came.
Surprise! The father had been daily waiting and watching for his son’s return. When the father saw his son in the distance he ran to greet him. The son confessed to the father and the exuberant father gave the Prodigal Son a VIP reception. All was now forgiven and forgotten.
That is a beautiful picture of the reception that a prodigal Christian will receive when they repent and return to God. He patiently waits for prodigal Christians to come back to Him. When they do God forgives them and restores them as before. Remember, it isn’t God who leaves prodigal Christians. Prodigal Christians leave God. But praise be to God for He will always welcome prodigal Christians home.
I hope you have enjoyed this sermon on Prodigal Christians. A new sermon will be presented tomorrow. Until then may GOD BLESS YOU
Thus far we have talked about the Prodigal Son wanting to leave home and taste the world. He got his due inheritance from his father and departed to a far country. Today we will examine the lifestyle of the Prodigal Son in that far country.
The last part of Luke 15:13 records that the Prodigal Son “…wasted his substance with riotous living.” The Prodigal Son had adopted a gross carnal lifestyle. He wasted his money and belongings. The word “wasted” derives from the same Greek word that refers to the scattering of seed by a sower. This imagines the Prodigal Son traveling around wildly spending his goods indiscriminately. How foolish an unregenerate soul can be!
Prodigal Christians waste much more than worldly goods. They waste the precious blessings bestowed them at salvation. They withdraw from their Father God. Instead of acting like children of God they assume the ways of the children of Satan. They no longer are guided by the Word of God. They quench the Holy Spirit. They “fulfill the lust of the flesh.” Galatians 5:16 This is wasting God’s gifts which makes them prodigal Christians.
Beside being wasteful the Prodigal Son lived “riotously.” Riotous comes from a Greek word meaning: dissolution; licentious; without morals. That gives the impression that no immoral act was beyond the Prodigal Son. In truth any lost person can be outrageously immoral. I think of the words spoken by the prophet Jeremiah. “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: Who can know it?” Jeremiah 17:9
In regard to prodigal Christians I think we know that they too can be riotous – live deeply in sin. Many Christians have ruined their Christian life and testimony by sin. Sin by Christians is no less sin than that of prodigal sons.
Verse 14 tells us that a famine came which threatened the Prodigal Son’s life. In Verse 15 we see the action the Prodigal Son took to save himself. He joined with a pig farmer as a hired servant. The word “joined” is from a Greek word having a primary meaning to “glue or cement together.” The Prodigal Son placed his life and welfare in the hands of a farmer rather than seeking God’s help.
Prodigal Christians can make unwise associations with lost people. Such cases are: marrying a lost person, partnering in business with lost partners – working for unethical, dishonest or immoral people and joining worldly clubs and organizations. The Bible directly forbids us to commit ourselves to lost people. “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers…” II Corinthians 6:14 “Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord…” II Corinthians 6:17
We have seen the unrestrained and riotous folly of the Prodigal Son. Tomorrow we will see the awakening of his spirit. Until then may GOD BLESS YOU
We first meet the soon-to-be prodigal son in Luke 15:12. It is easy to discern that he had a yearning to taste the things of the world. He was anxious to leave his father, family and home. His father’s love and caring no longer constrained him. Did he think he would have a better life out there in the world? He will soon find out.
In order to facilitate a soon departure the prodigal son asked his father for his share of the inheritance. It seems that his request was more of a demand, for his words were: “Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me.” There is no polite “please” or “thank you” from the son showing his unappreciative and ungrateful spirit. It seems that the father quickly, but reluctantly no doubt, acquiesced to his son’s request.
I see the prodigal son’s father as typifying the Christians’ Father. At our plea for salvation God instantly and freely heaps His blessings upon us. We become His children – His family members – and being so we have an inheritance the world could never match. We learn in Romans 8:17 that God makes us His heirs and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ. We can’t even begin to imagine what that inheritance will be like.
In verse 13 the prodigal son gets his inheritance and soon splits to a far country. The far country is not named but we can know some things about it. First, that far country is typical of the sinful world without God. Sin rules in all countries. Second, though this is not common thought, that far country like all countries was Satan’s world. Remember when the Devil offered Jesus the kingdoms of the world if he would worship him? See Matthew Chapter 4 Satan is the present temporary ruler of the world’s kingdoms.
Third, that far country to which the prodigal son fled would overcome him – would get the best of him. Those who live in this world following the world’s system must become victims of it. That goes for prodigal sons and prodigal Christians alike.
Unlike the prodigal son a prodigal Christian does not have to leave home to flee Father God. All he has to do is cease being faithful and stop serving God. That will surely produce a prodigal Christian. A prodigal Christian, like the Prodigal Son, will soon experience defeat.
We will take notice of the Prodigal Son’s lifestyle next time. It should be a real enlightener for Christians. Until then may GOD BLESS YOU
The beginning of a new sermon titled “Prodigal Christians” is where we are today. No doubt the title immediately brings to mind the parable of Jesus which is commonly called, The Prodigal Son. You may want to read Luke 15:11-24 before you proceed. We will call attention to verses of the text as we proceed.
I agree with the preacher who suggested that a more appropriate name for that parable would be “A Gracious God” or “Our Gracious God” rather than The Prodigal Son. The real point of that parable is a gracious God who welcomes home a wayward sinner and restores him completely.
Furthermore, I see this parable more as a rebuke of the hypocritical, self-righteous Pharisees who maligned the common Jews who came to belief in God and lived for God. Similarly there are many BIG TIME preachers and evangelists today who act like the rest of Christendom are their subjects instead of God’s.
Since we will be discussing the Prodigal Son and Prodigal Christians we should first define what is meant by the term prodigal. The English word prodigal comes from the Greed word meaning: to be wastefully or recklessly extravagant in spending money or resources.
Question: Could there not be wasteful Christians as well as wasteful sinners? Certainly and this sermon will make that truth very clear. As a matter of fact, though I don’t have any numbers, I think the number of prodigal Christians equal or surpass the number of faithful Christians in our churches today.
In this sermon we will use information given for the Prodigal Son to draw a parallel with prodigal Christians. I hope you understand that I am not altering or polluting Jesus’ parable of the Prodigal Son. I am merely showing how information for the Prodigal Son adapts well to the possibility of prodigal Christians.
Tomorrow we will meet the Prodigal Son. Until then may GOD BLESS YOU