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Kids These Days!

Daily Reading: Luke 15

Scripture Focus: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. (Luke 15:24)

Devotional Thought: "Kids these days!" Have you ever heard that? It's usually not spoken in a positive way. That's just what the people probably thought when they heard Jesus tell of the prodigal son.

There are many cultural implications in this story that are lost in our modern, Western understanding:

  • The son asking for his inheritance was akin to him telling his father that he wished him dead...

  • The loss of his inheritance in a “far country” meant that he had lost part of Israel’s property and wealth to a pagan people...

  • His determination to return to his father and his scheming to escape from the terrible living conditions he had created for himself was quite possibly fraught with deceit. At least that is what the original audience would have understood.

But they would have been amazed at the next part of Jesus' story. The humiliated father does not simply welcome his son back home, we read that he is waiting and watching for his beloved child, longing for his return even after all this time. We read that he felt compassion and RAN (unheard of for men of this time, and considered undignified) to embrace his son and kiss him. Whatever the son had schemed or planned on the long journey home, his father showed selfless, sacrificial grace and love toward him.

This story does not celebrate the son who managed to turn his life around for the better as much as it celebrates a father (The Father) who never stopped loving and longing for his child. This is the glorious heartbeat of the gospel. God longs to celebrate over us: "For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found."


Prayer: Father, how we praise your great name for your unrelenting love! For even when we were dead in our trespasses, you made us alive together with Christ.

Psalm of the Day: 1 Deliver me, O LORD, from evil men; preserve me from violent men, 2 who plan evil things in their heart and stir up wars continually. 3 They make their tongue sharp as a serpent's, and under their lips is the venom of asps. Selah 4 Guard me, O LORD, from the hands of the wicked; preserve me from violent men, who have planned to trip up my feet. 5 The arrogant have hidden a trap for me, and with cords they have spread a net; beside the way they have set snares for me. Selah 6 I say to the LORD, You are my God; give ear to the voice of my pleas for mercy, O LORD! (Psalms 140:1-6)

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