“But we had to celebrate and rejoice, for this brother of yours was dead and has begun to live, and was lost and has been found” (Luke 15:32).
Two very different siblings are described in the parable. One brings nothing to the table but brokenness and a repentant heart. The other presents a pedigreed religious performance. Unexpectedly, the one with no credentialed merits to offer finds life, while the proudly entitled elder son stands on the outside looking in; living the horrifically slow death of anger, bitterness, resentment, and self-loathing. Great faith never arises from the religiously established, but from a quagmire of human despair from which the cross would emerge.