The Lost Son
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“The Lost Son,” Friend, Apr. 2002, 14

The Lost Son

The Third Parable

younger son

A man had two sons. Each son would get some money when the father died. The younger son did not want to wait until his father’s death. He asked for his part of the money at once. The father gave it to him. Luke 15:11–12

son spent all the money

The son took the money and left home. He went to another land, where he spent all of it. And he sinned again and again. Luke 15:13

son was very hungry

Finally he had no money to buy food. Very hungry, he asked a man for help. The man sent him to feed pigs. Luke 15:14–15

son wanted to go home

The son was so hungry that he wanted to eat the pigs’ food. Even the servants at home had better food to eat than he did. He wanted to go home, but he thought that he was not good enough to be a son to his father. Luke 15:16–19

father saw son returning

He decided to repent and ask to be a servant in his father’s house. When he went home, his father saw him coming. Luke 15:19–20

father was happy

The father ran to meet his son and put his arms around him and kissed him. Luke 15:20

son said he had sinned

The son told his father that he had sinned. Luke 15:21

father put clothes and ring on son

The father told a servant to bring the best clothes and put them on the son. The servant put shoes on the son’s feet and a ring on his finger. Luke 15:22


Then the father told the servant to make a feast for the son. He wanted everyone to celebrate because the son who had gone away was now home. The son who had sinned had now repented. Luke 15:23–24

older son

The older son had been working in the field. When he came home, he heard music and dancing and asked a servant what was happening. The servant told him that the younger son had come home and their father wanted all to celebrate. Luke 15:25–27

older son was angry

Angry, the older son would not go into the house. His father came out to talk with him. Luke 15:28

father and older son

The father said that the older son had always stayed with him and enjoyed all that was there. And everything the father now had would belong to the older son. But his younger son had gone away. And because he had come home, it was right to celebrate. His younger son had sinned, but he had repented. Luke 15:31–32


Jesus ended the story. He had now told the Pharisees three parables to show them why He talked to sinners. The Savior wanted the Pharisees to know how much Heavenly Father loves everyone. He loves people who obey Him. He also loves sinners, but He cannot bless them until they repent. He wants sinners to repent so that they can come back to Him. John 3:16–17

Illustrated by Paul Mann