And he said to him, “Son, you are always with me, and all that I have is yours. It was right that we should make merry and be glad, for your brother was dead and is alive again, and was lost and is found.” — Luke 15: 31–32
Let us rejoice with each and every one who makes the experience of God’s mercy and finds the way back into fellowship with Him. Our Bible text comprises the conclusion of the parable of the prodigal son. The father goes out—as he had already done with the “lost” son—and speaks to his older son who is returning from the field. He, the elder brother, had stayed with his father and had always obeyed his will. Now he was annoyed at the fact that his younger brother had received such an unconditional reception. He even reproached his father as a result, and made it clear that he did not want to participate in the celebration of his brother’s return. The father explained the reason for this celebration: “Your brother was dead and is alive again” (verse 32). He asked his son to be glad and make merry.
Christ, the Lord of life, gives us orientation. We have the choice between:
- bitterness or joy,
- exclusion or loving acceptance,
- prejudice or tolerant conduct.