I’m sure, if you made it to this blog, you have heard the story of the prodigal’s return. You’ve also been taught that this is an allegory for all of us. I used to believe that to be true as well. And yes, to certain extent it is. We all have gone astray and have had realized how bankrupt we were without God, and how lost we were without God’s TRUTH (Christ revealed in us). Even though, God had His hand (authority) on us every step of the way.
Most don’t believe this of course, not many will go on record and say, “God is in control of everything, even our ignornace!” … well Paul did for us, in the book of Romans 8, he says “The Creature (Our souls) were made subject to VANITY, NOT WILLINGLY, but by REASON of HE who SUBJECTED US also in Hope. You see, even our frustration and pain has a point. The story of the prodigal is beautiful illustration of this. As the Father allowed the Younger to go into the FAR COUNTRY to learn that only in the Father’s house is there peace, life, and sustenance.
So, we all have seen the story of the Prodigal as a picture of US… However, about six months ago I came to another great understanding of what this story represents, and who these TWO SONS are.
First the cliff notes, Jacob Israel style!
The prodigal story tells the tale of two brothers and a wealthy Father. One brother stays with the Father and endures the trials associated with laboring in the Father’s fields… The other, the younger of the two, goes buck wild, takes his inheritance, and parties like it’s 1999 all over again. The younger, after what must have seemed like the hangover of the century, comes to his senses. After losing everything and being forced to eat the same pig food he fed pigs with he finally decides to return to Dad and beg for Papa’s forgiveness. He finds the Father was actually waiting for him in the field. A picture of how God never takes his eyes off us, and waits patiently for our return… So the younger, gets to his Dad and says “I’ve sinned against you and heaven” the Father doesn’t condemn him, in fact he throws the younger brother a big party… Now if this was an episode of “Intervention” the counselor would not suggest such a thing, we wouldn’t want the younger brother to relapse now would we?… HOWEVER, the celebration is an allegory, as well as the story as whole. So the Father demands, “KILL THE FATTED CALF, GET HIM A ROBE AND HIS FAVORITE BUNNY SLIPPERS AND PUT A RING ON THAT SKINNY FINGER OF HIS!” – Everyone of these things you’ll learn are symbolic, beside the Bunny Slippers, they are just awesome and comfy cozy… So, we cut to: Older brother coming back from working the fields… He hears all the hoopla and gets heated, “DAD!!!!!” He says, “I am the best son in the whole wide world and you never threw me a party!”… The older brother’s jealousy seems petty to the reader, instead of being happy for his brother’s return he stomps his feet like a little whiner baby. His Father has to remind him, “All that I have is YOURS.”
So why this parable? … Well, in Luke’s gospel Chapter 15, a bunch of publicans and sinners came near to hear Jesus. (To understand the things of the kingdom)
Luke 15:2: And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them.
Them BAD RELIGIOUS loved to condemn the J-man. It’s sad really, when you think the same thing is going on today. Unfortunately, dear old Solomon was right in saying, “There is nothing new under the sun.” Whatever was back then is alive and well today.
The irony is many religious leaders, and devote church goers will in one breath condemn the Pharisees behavior, and then in the other tell you, “You better not get involved with anyone who is NOT A BELIEVER”… This elitism and prejudice is welcome and encouraged in Bad Religion today. NOT in the Kingdom of God I assure you.
Many of the Bad Religious, will even use scripture to justify such behavior… Mind you, they have no clue as what these verses they are quoting really mean. Like the one below.
2 Corinthians 6:14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
Oh sure, at first glance you might think the unbeliever is someone who just doesn’t know God. But, consider what a Yolk is… A YOLK is a restraint/bondage that is used to CONTROL AN ANIMAL… In this case, the UNBELIEVER would seek to control the BELIEVER… Now, how many people do you know OUTSIDE MAN MADE RELIGION that try and control you with a bunch of nonsense? Not many… You see, the UNBELIEVER in this case, are the BAD RELIGIOUS — Side note Church: when I say “bad religious”, of course I’m not talking about YOU 🙂 … or am I? Just kidding, Jacob loves you as God loves Jacob people!)
So the UNBELIEVERS are the IGNORANT RELIGIOUS TYPES that condemn you and tell you, do this, do that! GROWWWWWWLLLLL!
The UNBELIEVER here is NOT someone who hasn’t been baptized, or confessed Christ as Lord. The UNBELIEVER is the opposite, the Unbeliever is the Bad Religious person who ignorantly heaps a bunch of traditions, laws, and error on top of you, so you will have no joy in life at all.
The worst of which, is condemning you if say, you fall in love with someone who is not a “Christian.”
Now, listen Church, if you look at people as saved and unsaved you have missed the message of the gospel! So catch it now!
Peter worried that he couldn’t hang with those who were outside the faith. God gave him a vision, and rebuked him. Peter was all like… “No God, nothing unclean has ever touched my lips!” — MEATHEAD! Think about it, God says, KILL AND EAT and Peter is like, NAH! I don’t eat that stuff, meanwhile you know darn well, Peter was going back for seconds and thirds at the Bacon Buffet right before Paul called him out… Mmmmnn Bacon is GOOOOD!
Anyway, God whacks Peter upside the head with a vision. All the beasts, insects, basically everything and everyone God created, and God says to him… Acts 10:15 And the voice spake unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common.
He then goes on to explain… “God is no respecter of persons” – You see God doesn’t esteem one better than another, like Man does.
But now I’m about to throw all of you a curve ball… You’ll find, what is good for the goose is good for the gander, whatever the heck a gander is! (Just Kidding, being the gooseologist I am, I know full well what a Gander is) but that has nothing to do with this essay here.
What I mean is, if God doesn’t think higher of Pharisees than others, than he doesn’t think higher of the “others” than he does the Pharisees.
You’ll find at the end of this study, the Prodigal returning has more to do with the Bad Religious Pharisee types than it does with those who have come to the knowledge of the truth after being ignorant of it.
I want to really hammer this point home, God does NOT want us to stay away from people who do not know “Jesus”… Obviously, Jesus hung out with, ate, and drank with, sinners and publicans and we are cut from the same cloth. God wants us to accept, love, forgive, and guide all the people of the world…
But we are warned not to be UNEQUALLY YOKED with the laws and false beliefs of the Pharisees of the day.
So marry who you want to marry, just make sure you love each other. And when someone asks you, “Is the person you are dating a believer?” tell them, ZIP IT YOU! … Just because a person doesn’t belong to your local man-made church, does not mean they are not a believer. A person who loves and does not condemn, who forgives and accepts is more a believer, that someone who tithes, goes to church, helps with the annual food drive, etc, and has not love.
Romans 2:14 For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves
You see, although many would have you to believe that YOU somehow have to allow Jesus to enter your heart, (As if he is somewhere out there beyond the mikyway waiting for YOUR INVITATION)… Listen up, Christ is the LIFE in you already. Christ is the LIFE and LIGHT of all men, which shines in darkness. Even those who do not understand this LIFE, can unwittingly share the love of Christ with others, as Christ is their LIFE FORCE to begin with. Paul understood this, which is why he wrote about it, in Romans chapter 2.
Romans 2:15 Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness…
God has a new covenant with us today. He is writing the law on our hearts. All will know God the scriptures say. If only more believed this. Now I know what you’re saying… But Jacob, DON’T WE NEED TO ACCEPT CHRIST AS OUR LORD! … What do you think?
Christ is the TRUTH AND THE ONLY WAY to the FATHER… If you don’t UNDERSTAND and SUBMIT TO CHRIST you will NEVER BE FREE! So yes, if you don’t believe on the NAME (nature) Jesus (God’s Truth/Salvation Revealed in Man) than how could you ever be free? … Think about it! So yes, I believe without a shadow of a doubt that WE MUST and WILL! That’s good news people, spread it!
Back to our Prodigal story.
So the Mean Religious Leaders of Jesus’ day had a problem with Jesus hanging with what they considered the dregs of society…
Luke 2:3 And he spake this parable unto them, saying, What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?
You see, Jesus (The TRUTH/WORD of God revealed as MAN) does not lose ONE of those the Father gave him to save. “out of all you have given me Father, I have lost not one.” – the only one lost is the SON OF PERDITION (the carnal nature of man) –
The Pharisees did not believe God would save EVERYONE. But here Jesus is showing them, with worldly things, how God is better than man, as man would go after one of his lost sheep, God will go after all who have gone astray…
Now if people believed this, than they would stop looking at others as saved and unsaved. They would understand, that those people, who at the moment seem so far from God, will eventually be FOUND AGAIN.
Which brings us to the Prodigal story.
(For those who have not read it, here it is below. For those who know it, SCROLL PAST AND CONTINUE ON.)
11And he said, A certain man had two sons: 12And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living. 13And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living. 14And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want. 15And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. 16And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him. 17And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! 18I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, 19And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants. 20And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. 21And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son. 22But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: 23And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: 24For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry. 25Now his elder son was in the field: and as he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard music and dancing. 26And he called one of the servants, and asked what these things meant. 27And he said unto him, Thy brother is come; and thy father hath killed the fatted calf, because he hath received him safe and sound. 28And he was angry, and would not go in: therefore came his father out, and intreated him. 29And he answering said to his father, Lo, these many years do I serve thee, neither transgressed I at any time thy commandment: and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that I might make merry with my friends: 30But as soon as this thy son was come, which hath devoured thy living with harlots, thou hast killed for him the fatted calf. 31And he said unto him, Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine. 32It was meet that we should make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.
It has been taught that this is the story of US. How we are the prodigal that finally returned home… And the Church says, WE KNOW JACOB, YOU’VE SAID THAT ALREADY… Settle down people, I’m getting there.
So we’ve been taught, it’s about US (the remnant) … But I tell you, NAY! (Don’t you love how some people break out the old English to sound all spiritual and such…)
NAY!!!!! I SAY, TODAY, WISHING IT WAS MAY, SO I CAN GO OUTSIDE AND PLAY, IN THE HAY! <— Too far?
No!!!! It’s NOT ABOUT THE REMNANT! It’s NOT ABOUT THE FIRST FRUIT, or FIRST STRIPE, or FRUITSTRIPE GUM.
You’ll soon see, the Prodigal is actually those BAD RELIGIOUS LEADERS. The PRODIGAL are the PHARISEES, the ones we all love to condemn… WHAT? Did I just write that? YES! I did.
Many of you, who have come to this page, have probably had your unhealthy share of condemnation for your differing beliefs. But did you ever stop to think about how far down your nose, you look at those BAD RELIGIOUS LEADER TYPES?… I have, and if you’ve seen my Publicity Shot, you know, My Nose is a BIG ONE to look down! …
So, if you see the Pharisees of today in a negative light, as I did (Until the parable of the Prodigal become clear to me). Then you may change your tune after reading the rest of this article.
Let us remember, God is no respecter of persons. He does not think higher of one than another. This is why Jesus said on the cross, “Forgive them Father, they know not what they do.”
A child who can’t read isn’t condemned for not knowing how. The child is loved and encouraged and taught. The same is true, for all of God’s creation. The Pharisees included.
We cannot think higher of ourselves, just because we have a grander view of God’s plan. We cannot condemn those who we seem to be charlatans or fear mongers, even if they put Plastic Gold Confetti in their hair and tell everyone that God is pouring out his spirit as Gold Dust, or even if, the Pharisees say, God told me to kick him square in the gut to cure his cancer, (Which one of these KNUCKLEHEADS did.) Look, we can’t look down on them, because their total meatheads who haven’t had the truth revealed to them yet. We have to roll the way Jesus rolls, when looking at others who are ignorant and in SIN (error/foolish thinking)
Luke 7:31 And the Lord said, Whereunto then shall I liken the men of this generation? and to what are they like? They are like unto children sitting in the marketplace, and calling one to another, and saying, We have piped unto you, and ye have not danced; we have mourned to you, and ye have not wept.They are like kids, they are IMMATURE, they are the YOUNGER SON, they don’t know any better. So even though, in a round about way, I am sort of mocking the SIGNS AND WONDERS BRIGADE, I really have not animosity toward them. They are my YOUNGER BROTHER after all, and THEY WILL RETURN!
Just because their ways are false. We have to stop being like the OLDER BROTHER who is whining and complaining and carrying on when the younger brother finally comes home from whoring around and feeding the pigs. All you pastors of The Way know, deep down, you just WISH YOUR CONGREGATION was as big as the Prophets of Baal today… You’re all working those fields, tired, weary, persecuted, struggling to get by, then when the Big day comes, we find out the Prophets of Baal realized their mistake, they humbled themselves before God and God says, LET’S ROCK N ROLL!
I used to look at some of these big name healers and preachers in such a negative light. I saw them taking advantage of so many people who truly needed to hear the things of God. There was a part of me, that thought I was better than them. Perhaps, there still is a remnant of this pride in me. FATHER REMOVE IT, but keep my wicked sense of humor in tact! Today, I admit, I still can’t stomach to hear things that I know are not true. But like Jesus, we must not condemn and hate those who are merely ignorant of the truth. As they are blind for a moment.
Romans 11:25: For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. 26And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: 27For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.
Paul understood this as well. He was telling those who understood the truth, “Don’t think you’re any better, just because right now they can’t understand what you understand. God has done this, so he could have mercy on all… ALL WILL BE SAVED, when God takes away their sin.”
Even the mean old Pharisees, will have their SIN (foolish ignorant thoughts) ripped away and will be “brought to the knowledge of the truth.”
So, truly, this Prodigal Story is about those who may be, right now, fleecing the flock. They are the YOUNGER BROTHER who took the money and ran. Don’t believe me? Well keep reading, ye of little belief!
Let’s rip each verse apart, and see what falls out.
13And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living
A younger son is not as MATURE as the older. This is symbolic of understanding. The Younger does not have the experiential wisdom of the older. So we see that the YOUNGER is a picture of someone not as mature in the faith.
This SON (as we are all children of God) took his journey into a FAR COUNTRY, Symbolic of being far from the Truth. LEAVING THE KINGDOM OF GOD as depicted in Jesus’ parable of the man who went into a Far Country and almost lost his property in the process.
1 Kings 8:41 Moreover concerning a stranger, that is not of thy people Israel, but cometh out of a far country for thy name’s sake.
So the IMMATURE in the Faith, leave the TRUTH of God, for RIOTOUS living. And what is this symbolic of?
2 Peter 2:12-14 But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption; And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceiving while they feast with you; Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children:
Here we see those that spend their time on RIOTOUS LIVING are actually those TEACHING LIES and deceiving people. They claim the truth of God yet only teach COVETOUS PRACTICES… Does that sound like any PHARISEES we know?
14And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.
The FAMINE is symbolic of a lack of TRUTH. You see, In Babylon you don’t get much Fruit, Meat, or Milk… but I hear they have a mean rice pilaf! Okay, of course, the famine in the land, means there is NO TRUTH. One day, even these Religious leaders who have left the truth of God to teach lies, will find out how VAIN their beliefs and traditions are.
The FAMINE in the land has always been a symbol of Carnal Man coming to his senses and going to God to be fed.
15And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. 16And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him
Notice, how the YOUNGER BROTHER fed the SWINE. PIGS have always been a symbol of man’s ignorance and dangerous beliefs. PIGS will eat anything you feed them. This is why the LAW forbid the consumption of pork. Not because literal pigs are the devil, but because it is a SYMBOL of NOT BECOMING ONE with IGNORANCE. Also, a Pig Doesn’t have A CLOVEN (separated) HOOF! Symbolic of not having a SEPARATE WALK from the world.
The YOUNGER BROTHER (the immature deceiver who left the truth/kingdom of God) is seen FEEDING these swine. It is easy to see, that the YOUNGER BROTHER is an allegory of the PHARISEES who are feeding the IGNORANT a steady diet of whatever SLOP (lies/error/vanity/bondage) they want.
17And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!
What a great line… WHEN HE CAME TO HIMSELF – For those that can receive it, this means “when HE understands who HE is!” = “Christ IN You” … When he REMEMBERS AND UNDERSTANDS he is a SON OF GOD, he will want to return to Daddy!
When this YOUNGER SON came to his RIGHT MIND (The mind of Christ), he understood, that in his FATHER’S HOUSE there is enough BREAD (truth) and without the TRUTH he is as good as dead (CARNAL).
When you look at this parable through different eyes, it is easy to see, that the YOUNGER BROTHER are the RELIGIOUS ELITE who are IGNORANT today. And the OLDER BROTHER are those God has quickened to understand the Truth, and that may be YOU FRIEND OF MINE READING RIGHT NOW… That is of course, if you made it this far… Glad you’re still with me.
Now, I know, I have been guilty of condemning people who teach lies in the past. Nevertheless, when I understood that I was being like the OLDER BROTHER and condemning my YOUNGER BROTHER (immature religious leader/deceiver) for the ignorance of his ways… I repented.
I understood that it doesn’t matter if I have held the truth longer, and endured persecution by these Religious Pharisees.
How could I say to God, who loves all and is NO RESPECTER of persons… “DAD, HOW CAN YOU THROW A PARTY FOR HIS RETURN?”
One day, even those who are the most lost, and most destructive in the world, will come to understand how bankrupt they are without CHRIST. They, like the Younger Son, will feel that they are not worthy to return to God after they have wasted their inheritance on HARLOTS (Lies/Idolatry) …
However, when they return, and THE PRODIGALS WILL RETURN… God is waiting with open arms.
So, for all you OLDER SONS and DAUGHTERS out there that are suffering the heat of the day. Pray for your Younger brothers return and Thank God, because ALL THAT GOD HAS IS YOURS, AND YOURS IS HIS…
Stop talking bad about them, stop thinking bad about them, and stop hating them… Don’t be hating Church, just FORGIVE THEM FOR THEY KNOW NOT WHAT THEY DO!
“The Truth Will Change You”
Another eye opener. Thank you!
Jacob thank God again for opening my eyes to see the truth in how I have been acting and thinking like the older brother and how God’s love and grace has open my heart and mind to see the truth.
Love in Christ Daniel
Asiruwa Cletus. Wow! Bro jacob,tx 4 dis thought-transforming article. Honestly, i must say dat since i came across ur blog, my life has experienced an eye-opening transformation. Again, i say tx. May God take u deeper n d tins of d kingdom. Bye bro!!!
Amazing – the simple truths that we simply over look. The next time I pass by a church sign and get disgruntled with the “church sign wisdom”. I’ll remember to view it in the light of the silly things my son says from time to time. For example “Dad,I’m not gonna wash my hands for dinner because I washed them last week and I havent played in the dirt since this morning…”
Hi and thanks…
There be great writing here!
Also a thanks for your comment on my blog…1-There is a fearful rush to destroy everything other than a what-cause? 2-And the right-winged religous sort of godfearing, straight-ahead and upstanding–up? Geeze…Folks greater than me? 3-It may take a five-term prez. to undo what the combo hits of Bush and Cheney hath done to us–the world).
4-Again, I enjoy your writing.
5-I also believe with what is me, in our Lord and our Prince of Peace and our Holy Spirit for she is a most wonderful spirit.
6-May Respect and Understanding and Peace and Love (RUPL) be with all of us.
Phil Edwards (pmespeak.com)…
I long for the day all believe this way.
Jacob your spiritual insight is amazing. God has definitely turned on your lightbulb. I was absolutely surprized and delighted to see the truth of the Prodigal being the pharisees. I could also see me as the Prod.
Now that was really good and funny! Puts everything in just the right perspective…loved it!!!
I meant to say that I am also the older brother.
Went to fast.
I find it very interesting how I can be all characters in a scripture.
I may read the story of the Prodical Son and be him, and then I read your post and find that I am also him and we are one.
I was once Abraham, and I was also Issac.
I was Jacob and I am Israel.
Amazing isn’t it?