“The Lost Son” [Part #2] Luke 15:20b-32

 GOAL:  The student will be able to identify the elements that emphasize GOD’S grace toward the lost son and the oldest son at home.

 INDICATOR:  Having identified the elements that emphasizes GOD’S grace the student attempts to exemplify the attitude of the Father toward the one who repents and not the attitude of the oldest son.


 Prepare for the reading of the lesson text with this Introductory



“The Story of The Prodigal Son is one of the most familiar stories

in the Bible.  To a great degree, our understanding of this text

is filtered through our own experience.  Parents who have are

presently struggling with wayward children will tend to identify

with the father of the prodigal, and look at this text for  guidance

and comfort for them in the midst of their  pain and adversity.

Those who have fallen into sin will focus upon the wayward son

and on the loving and forgiving heart of the Father.  Few of us

will choose to identify with the oldest brother, and yet, in the

context of Chapter 15, he is the central figure, his sin is most in

view, and his reaction to his brother’s repentance and return is

our LORD’S explanation for the grumbling of the Pharisees and

scribes.” [Bible.org]


Remember, this is JESUS’ response to the Pharisees and scribes

dislike of JESUS sharing company with tax collectors and sinners.


  1. Race for Love: Read verse 20b.

      a]  Ask a student to read “What Others Say” – John Piper from the

           Commentary on page 201.

     b]  Having read the comments by John Piper what message is JESUS

             giving about GOD by showing the Father in running to the lost son,

             falling on his neck and kissing him?


  1. Party Hearty!: Read and discuss verses 21-24

      a]  From the son’s statement in verse 21 what indicates he is truly


     b]  List the items the Father put on the lost son and what each may mean.

           [See:  Top of page 202 in the Commentary]

     c]  Had the son done anything to earn back his sonship status?


          This is a marvelous picture of GOD’S grace.  The Father gave the lost son

           status that he didn’t deserve.


TRUTH:  GOD, the loving Heavenly Father, waits to welcome each repentant sinner home with open arms.


  1. Mysterious Music; Count Me Out!: Read and discuss verses 25-32.


     a]  What is the reason the oldest son had such a bad attitude about what the

            Father was doing for his younger brother?

     b]  Is the older brother justified in his behavior?  Why or Why not?

     c]  What should be the oldest son’s response?  Why?

     d]  How does the Father show grace to the older son?

     e]  Which son do you identify with the most?



 As individuals we may share the attitude of the Pharisees as we

discount certain people in subtle or even overt ways.  If we take

JESUS’ parable to heart, we cannot be indifferent to people who

are lost sinners in need of JESUS the SAVIOR.  We must welcome

each sinner who repents.


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