Last night we had a bunch of people over to end our study of the parable of the prodigal son. As in the parable we ended in a feast. IT was a great time of friendship and even our Pastor and his family joined us. I just let things flow and listend to the conversation and loved that fact that my younger daughter just tended to listening to the adults talk and my older daughter just took over naturally watching the kids without being told.
The study was something I was highly passionate about and it symbolized my own personal walk with God and mirrored many of the experiences in my life. People dont realize this but the parable of the Prodigal Son is really about intimacy, honesty, relationship and its a scripture that points to a deep relationship with Jesus Christ. The parable asks us to change the ways of both our irreligious sin (younger brother) and religious sin (elder brother)….. but what people dont realize is that this is a parable where Jesus cries out to the religious, elder brother to repent of her or his religious sin and religious pride. Another way to say this is that God wants us to repent from seeking to get our worth out of eatting from the tree of knowledge of good and evil as opposed to getting our worth from the tree of life (Christ). Religious pride, or seeking to get our righteoussness from the tree of knowledge of good and evil (phil 3:7-11) as opposed to getting our righteussness from the proper place, in Christ (Rom 1:16-17), is something that normally goes overlooked in many Christian circles and most Christians are either blind to it or feel self justified for engaging in it.
I have a past where if you knew it you would probably think I was not eligible to teach a bible study. However, it was due to this past and a recovery of this intimate, closeness with both Jesus and my wife that I wanted to teach the study. The parable also mirrors my Christian walk and personal experiences. A past where my marriage relationship struggled… a past where Christians wanted to remove me from their lives and close friendships were brokend in the midst of our sin struggles as a person was unwilling to deal with her religious pharasaical pride. Thats enough said about this…. but its a part of my story that runs deep.
The study is over…. and I plan on teaching it again at some point next year. I encourage everyone to read Tim Kellers book “The Prodigal God”. A study on the parable of the prodigal son.