Our site uses cookies to improve the user experience and we recommend accepting its use to take full advantage of the navigation


Today's Gospel + short theological explanation

Saturday of the Second Week of Lent
Gospel text (Lk 15:1-3.11-32): Tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to listen to Jesus, but the Pharisees and scribes began to complain, saying, "This man welcomes sinners and eats with them." So to them Jesus addressed this parable. "A man had two sons, and the younger son said to his father, 'Father, give me the share of your estate that should come to me.' So the father divided the property between them. After a few days, the younger son collected all his belongings and set off to a distant country where he squandered his inheritance on a life of dissipation. When he had freely spent everything, a severe famine struck that country, and he found himself in dire need...

Coming to his senses he thought, 'How many of my father's hired workers have more than enough food to eat, but here am I, dying from hunger. I shall get up and go to my father and I shall say to him, "Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I no longer deserve to be called your son; treat me as you would treat one of your hired workers."' So he got up and went back to his father. While he was still a long way off, his father caught sight of him, and was filled with compassion. He ran to his son, embraced him and kissed him...

Implicit Christology in the "Parable of the Prodigal Son"

EDITORIAL TEAM evangeli.net (based on texts by Benedict XVI) (Città del Vaticano, Vatican)

Today we read, perhaps, the most beautiful of Jesus’ parables. It has three protagonists: the two brothers (the "prodigal" son and the son who remained at home) and the good father. At that time, Jesus Christ, was really before two "brothers": tax collectors and sinners, on one hand; Pharisees and scribes, on the other. With His words, Jesus justified His goodness and His welcome to sinners.

Even more so: Jesus Christ justifies His goodness toward sinners with the behavior of the father in the parable. By the way he acts, then, Jesus himself becomes the revelation of He who He called His "father". How did God show His merciful love for sinners? In that “while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom 5.8). Jesus cannot enter into the narrative framework of the parable because He lives in identification with the Heavenly Father, and bases His conduct on the Father’s.

—O Jesus! It is in the figure of the father, that I see you placed in the heart of the parable, as the concrete realization of the father’s action.