The Parable of The Prodigal Son

Luke 15:11-32


  • Read the scripture text of the parable.
  • This Parable follows the Parables of the Lost Sheep and the Lost Coin.
  • Re-read Luke 15:1-10 and consider the situation that prompted these parables.


  • Consider these questions about the parable.
  • Who is represented by the younger brother?
  • Who is represented by the older brother?
    • Why is this ironic?  Have any of us truly been continually faithful?
  • What finally caused the son to come to his senses and return home?  Why does it often have to come to this point?
  • What was the significance of the father watching for the son?  (Ezekiel 18:21-23, 30-32)
  • Why did the father have to come out to get the older son? (Verse 28)  What does the fact that he did this indicate?
  • What did the father say belonged to the older son?  (Verse 31)
  • How does the older brother refer to the younger brother in verse 30?  Why do you think he does this?
  • Do we sometimes “distance” ourselves from others when we are angry or envious of them?
  • What are your thoughts on the older son’s comment that his brother had “devoured your livelihood with harlots”?
    How did he know this?  Did he know this?
  • Do you think the older son ended up going into the celebration?  Why do you think Jesus ended the parable without saying?
  • Other Questions
  • How does the fact that the son’s money ran out correspond to a life of sin?
  • Are people usually deceived by sin?  (Jeremiah 2:13)  How does sin usually leave a person?
  • What is the difference between a faithful Christian and a repentant sinner?  Why is the latter worthy of a celebration?
  • What part did repentance play in the story?
  • Would the reconciliation between the father and son have happened if the son had not chosen to return?

Youth Group:

  • Consider these questions after reading the parable.
  • Why didn’t the father just stop the younger son before he left home?
  • What is significant about a Jewish boy feeding pigs? (Leviticus 11:7)
  • Why do you think no one would give the prodigal son anything after his money ran out?
  • What is repentance?  Is it more than being sorry?
  • When did the son truly repent?  When his money ran out?  When he was starving?  When he turned and went home?
  • Why do you think the father saw the son returning while he was still a long way away?
  • Activities for Youth Group Members
  • Find out what the word “Prodigal” means.
  • This word is only used in the scriptures in 1 English translation of the Bible (Verse 13).  Can you find which translation?
  • Look up Luke 15:13 in different translations to see what other words are used.
  • Work the Puzzle included in this week’s bulletin.
  • Pray for a friend or family member who has not been faithful.
  • Work this online jigsaw puzzle about the Prodigal son.

Kidspiration Kids: