Luke 15:1-3, 11b-32

Luke 15:1-3, 11b-32
Lent C18


Now allI the tax collectorsII and sinnersIII wereIV coming nearV to listenVI to him. 

Notes on verse 1

I “all” = pas. This is all or every.
II “tax collectors” = telones. From telos (an end, aim, purpose, completion, end goal, consummation, tax; going through the steps to complete a stage or phase and then moving on to the next one). This is tax collector, one who worked for the Romans taking taxes from Jews. It also meant the toll house. Literally, this is “paying at the end.”
III “sinners” = hamartolos. From hamartano (to miss the mark, do wrong, make a mistake, sin); {from a (not) + meros (a part or share)}. This is sinning, sinful, sinner. It referred to missing the mark or falling short. The term was also used in archery for missing the target.
IV “were” = eimi. This is to be or exist.
V “coming near” = eggizo. From eggus (nearby or near in time). This is extremely close by – approaching, at hand, immediately imminent.
VI “listen” = akouo. This is hear or listen, but it also means to understand by hearing. This is where the word “acoustics” comes from.

And the PhariseesVII and the scribesVIII were grumblingIX and saying, “This fellow welcomesX sinners and eats with them.”

Notes on verse 2

VII “Pharisees” = Pharisaios. From Aramaic peras (to divide, separate) and from Hebrew parash (to make distinct, separate, scatter). This is a Pharisee, a member of a Jewish sect active in the 1st century. Their name meant separate in the sense of wanting to live a life separated from sin. Whereas the Sadducees were part of the priestly line and inherited their religious position and responsibilities, Pharisees were regular people who studied the scriptures and offered guidance to regular folk. Sadducees were often wealthier and willing to sacrifice their identity to rub elbows with Roman society. Pharisees were often more concerned with what it meant to follow God without compromising what made them different as followers of God. Sadducees primarily believed in that which was written down (the first five books of the Bible) and Pharisees believed in the Bible and the traditions of the elders. Pharisees had a very wide range of interpretations and diversity of opinion. Their standard mode of religious engagement was lively debate with one another. To argue religion with another teacher was to recognize that they had something of value to offer.
VIII “scribes” = grammateus. From gramma (what is drawn or written so a letter of the alphabet, correspondence, literature, learning); from grapho (to write). This is a writer, scribe, or secretary. Within Judaism, it was someone learned in the Law, a teacher. Also used in the Bible of the town-clerk of Ephesus. See Sirach 38:24-39:11 for a lengthier, positive passage about who scribes were and what they meant in society.
IX “grumbling” = diagogguzo. 2x in NT– grumbling of Pharisees and scribes before the Parable of the Lost Sheep in Luke 15:2 & when Jesus agreed to eat with Zacchaeus in Luke 19:7. From dia (through, for the sake of, across, thoroughly) + gogguzo (to murmur or grumble; an onomatopoeia to sound similar to the cooing of doves; figuratively, it is simmering displeasure that is muffled – a dull, constant murmuring). This is to grumble or murmur like the ongoing hum of a dove or bee. It is intense, negative complaining as amplified through a crowd.
X “welcomes” = prosdechomai. 14x in NT. From pros (at, to, toward, with) + dechomai (to warmly receive, be ready for what is offered, take, accept, or welcome; to receive in a literal or figurative sense). This is to receive, welcome, expect, accept. It is reception with a warm, personal welcome or active waiting. It can also mean endurance or patience.

So he told them this parable:XI

11 Then Jesus said, “There was a manXII who hadXIII twoXIV sons.XV 

Notes on verses 3, 11

XI “parable” = parabole. From paraballo (literally to throw beside, compare, arrive, liken); {from para (by, beside, in the presence of) + ballo (to throw, cast, place, put, drop)}. This is a parable, comparison, adage. Quite often a tale told or a metaphor to establish a point, but it could be a true story.
XII “man” = anthropos. Probably from aner (man, male, husband) + ops (eye, face); {from optanomai (to appear, be seen); perhaps from horao (become, seem, appear)}. This is human, humankind. Used for all genders.
XIII “had” = echo. This is to have, hold, or possess.
XIV “two” = duo. This is two or both.
XV “sons” = huios. This is son, descendant – a son whether natural born or adopted. It can be used figuratively for other forms of kinship.

12 The youngerXVI of them said to his father,XVII ‘Father, giveXVIII me the shareXIX of the propertyXX

Notes on verse 12a

XVI “younger” = neos. This is young, new, fresh, or youthful. This is brand new as opposed to novel (which is kainos in Greek).
XVII “father” = pater. This is father in a literal or figurative sense. Could be elder, senior, ancestor, originator, or patriarch.
XVIII “give” = didomi. To give, offer, place, bestow, deliver. This is give in a literal or figurative sense.
XIX “share” = meros. Related to “sinners” in v1. See note III above.
XX “property” = ousia. Related to “were” in v1. 2x in NT. From eimi (see note IV above). This is property or estate.

that will belongXXI to me.’ So he dividedXXII his propertyXXIII between them. 

Notes on verse 12b

XXI “will belong” = epiballo. Related to “parable” in v3. 18x in NT. From epi (on, upon, among, what is fitting) + ballo (see note XI above). This is to place on, fall, lay, throw over, think about, waves crashing, emotions emerging.
XXII “divided” = diaireo. 2x in NT. From dia (through, because of, across, thoroughly) + haireo (to choose, take). This is to divide, apportion, or distribute.
XXIII “property” = bios. 10x in NT– including the widow’s mite story where she gave all she had to live on in Mark 12:44 and Luke 21:4. This is physical life, livelihood, goods, or the way one lives one’s life.

13 A fewXXIV daysXXV later the younger son gatheredXXVI all he had and traveledXXVII to a distantXXVIII country,XXIX

Notes on verse 13a

XXIV “a few” = ou + polus. Literally, “not many.” Polus is much, often, plenteous – a large number or a great extent.
XXV “days” = hemera. Perhaps from hemai (to sit). This is day, time, or daybreak.
XXVI “gathered” = sunago. From sun (with, together with, closely associated) + ago (to lead, bring, carry, guide, go, drive). This is to lead together and so to assemble, bring together, welcome with hospitality, or entertain. In the sense of assembly, this is the root of the word “synagogue.”
XXVII “traveled” = apodemeo. 6x in NT. From apodemos (to go abroad, sojourn in a foreign country); {from apo (from, away from) + demos (district, multitude, rabble, assembly; Greeks bound by similar laws or customs); {from deo (to tie, bind, compel, declare unlawful)}}. This is to travel abroad, be away from home. This word shares a root with “democracy” and “Nicodemus.”
XXVIII “distant” = makros. 6x in NT. This is long, far away, lasting a long time.
XXIX “country” = chora. From chasma (gap, gulf, chasm, open space); from chasko (to gape, yawn). This is space, land, region, fields, open area – the countryside in contrast to the town.

and there he squanderedXXX his propertyXXXI in dissoluteXXXII living.XXXIII 

Notes on verse 13b

XXX “squandered” = diaskorpizo. 9x in NT. From dia (through, on account of, across, thoroughly) + skorpizo (to scatter, distribute, dissipate, waste). This is to separate or disperse. Figuratively, it can be squander or waste.
XXXI “property” = ousia. Same as “property” in v12. See note XX above.
XXXII “dissolute” = asotos. 1x in NT. From the same as asotia (profligacy, unsaved); {from a (not, without) + sozo (to save, heal, rescue); {from sos (safe, well, rescued)}}. This is literally something that can’t be saved or something that is wasted. Figuratively, is is prodigally or riotous.
XXXIII “living” = zao. This is to live literally or figuratively. It is used for life including the vitality of humans, plants, and animals – it is life physical and spiritual and life everlasting.

14 When he had spentXXXIV everything,XXXV a severeXXXVI famineXXXVII

Notes on verse 14a

XXXIV “spent” = dapanao. 5x in NT. From dapane (cost or expense); from dapto (to devour). This is to spend, squander, waste.  It can be used literally for spending money or figuratively for expending energy or using time.
XXXV “everything” = pas. Same as “all” in v1. See note I above.
XXXVI “severe” = ischuros. From ischuo (to be strong, healthy and vigorous, able, have power, prevail; strength that engages a resisting force); from ischus (strength, might, power, force, ability; power that engages immediate resistance). This is strong – first of physical strength. Later, also used figuratively for forcible, powerful, mighty, vehement, or sure.
XXXVII “famine” = limos. 12x in NT. Probably from leipo (to leave behind, be lacking). This is hunger, famine, or lacking.

took placeXXXVIII throughout that country, and he beganXXXIX to be in need.XL 

Notes on verse 14b

XXXVIII “took place” = ginomai. This is to come into being, to happen, become, be born. It can be to emerge from one state or condition to another or is coming into being with the sense of movement or growth.
XXXIX “began” = archomai. From archo (to rule, begin, have first rank or have political power). This is to begin or rule.
XL “be in need” = hustereo. 16x in NT– same verb used by the rich young man when he asks Jesus what do I still lack? (Mt 19:20); used in the parable of the prodigal son to describe him as impoverished (Lk 15:14); used when the wine ran out at the wedding at Cana (Jn 2:3); all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Rom 3:23); used in describing the body of Christ – that we give greater honor to the inferior member (1 Cor 12:24). From husteros (last, later). This is to fall behind, come late, be interior, suffer need, be left out., to fail to meet a goal.

15 So he wentXLI and hiredXLII himself out to oneXLIII of the citizensXLIV of that country,

Notes on verse 15a

XLI “went” = poreuomai. From poros (ford, passageway). This is to go, travel, journey, or die. It refers to transporting things from one place to another and focuses on the personal significance of the destination.
XLII “hired” = kollao. 12x in NT. From kolla (glue). This is to glue together. So it is joining, spending time with, or being intimately connected to. It can be used for marriage, joining the church, clinging, or adhering to something. It was also used medically for uniting wounds.
XLIII “one” = heis. This is one, a person, only, some.
XLIV “citizens” = polites. 4x in NT. From polis (a city or its inhabitants; is a town of variable size, but one that has walls); probably from the same as polemos (war, quarrel, strife; battle, whether one time or on-going); {from pelomai (to bustle) or from polus (much, many, abundant)}. This is citizen or townsperson.

who sentXLV him to his fieldsXLVI to feedXLVII the pigs.XLVIII 

Notes on verse 15b

XLV “sent” = pempo. This is to send, put forth, or dispatch. This often refers to a temporary errand. It is sending someone with a focus on the place they departed from. By contrast, another Greek word, hiemi, emphasizes the destination and yet another word, stello, focuses on the motion that goes with the sending.
XLVI “fields” = agros. This is a field as a place where one grows crops or pastures cattle. It can also refer to a farm or lands. This is one of the roots of “agriculture.”
XLVII “feed” = bosko. 9x in NT– 6x of the Gadarene/Gerasene demoniacs, 2x of Jesus appearing to Peter saying “tend my lambs” and “feed my sheep,” and 1x of the Prodigal Son feeding the pigs.. This is to feed or pasture a flock. Figuratively, it can mean to nourish spiritually.
XLVIII “pigs” = choiros. 12x in NT– do not throw your pearls before swine (Mt 7:6), the Gadarene or Gerasene demoniac (Mt 8, Mk 5, and Lk 8), son who had to feed the pigs in the Parable of the Prodigal Son (Lk 15). This is a swine.

16 He would gladlyXLIX have filledL himselfLI with the podsLII that the pigs were eating; and no one gave him anything. 

Notes on verse 16

XLIX “would gladly” = epithumeo. 16x in NT. From epi (on, upon, fitting) + thumos (passion, wrath; actions emerging from passion or impulse) {from thuo (to rush along, breathe violently, offer sacrifice)}. This is desire, lust, longing for, setting one’s heart on. It is a longing whether good or bad. In either case, passion and yearning is set on the object of desire.
L “filled” = gemizo. 8x in NT. From gemo (to be full, swell, at capacity, actions taken to fulfill a goal). This is to fill up or load, be swamped as a boat with water.
LI “himself” = koilia + autos. Literally, “his belly.” From koilos (hollow). This is belly or organs in the abdomen. So, it could be stomach, womb, or heart. Figuratively, this refers to one’s inner self.
LII “pods” = keration. 1x in NT. From keras (horn or something horn-shaped; horn in a literal or figurative sense – that which prevails or a symbol of power); from kar (hair). This is literally something that is horned. It is particularly used for carob pods or husks.

17 But when he cameLIII to himself he said,LIV ‘How many of my father’s hired handsLV have breadLVI

Notes on verse 17a

LIII “came” = erchomai. This is to come or go.
LIV “said” = phemi. From phao (to shine). This is to declare, say, or use contrasts in speaking to shed light on one point of view.
LV “hired hands” = misthios. 3x in NT– all in Luke 15. From misthos (wages, pay, salary; reward, recompense, punishment; pay for services rendered in a literal or figurative way, good or bad). This is a hired servant – a worked that is paid compared to a slave.
LVI “bread” = artos. Perhaps from airo (raise, take up, lift, remove). This is bread or a loaf. It is a loaf as raised.

enough and to spare,LVII but here I am dyingLVIII of hunger!LIX 

Notes on verse 17b

LVII “have…enough and to spare” = perisseuo. From perissos (abundant, more, excessive, advantage, vehemently); from peri (all-around, encompassing, excess). This is more than what is ordinary or necessary. It is abounding, overflowing, being leftover, going above and beyond. It is super-abounding in number or quality.
LVIII “dying” = apollumi. From apo (from, away from) + ollumi (to destroy or ruin; the loss that comes from a major ruination). This is to destroy, cut off, to perish – perhaps violently. It can also mean to cancel or remove.
LIX “hunger” = limos. Same as “famine” in v14. See note XXXVII above.

18 I will get upLX and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinnedLXI against heavenLXII and beforeLXIII you; 

Notes on verse 18

LX “get up” = anistemi. From ana (upwards, up, again, back, anew) + histemi (to make to stand, place, set up, establish, appoint, stand by, stand still, stand ready, stand firm, be steadfast). This is to raise up, rise, appear. It is to stand up literally or figuratively. Can also mean to resurrect.
LXI “sinned” = hamartano. Related to “sinners” in v1 & “share” in v12. See note III above.
LXII “heaven” = ouranos. May be related to oros (mountain, hill) with the notion of height. This is the air, the sky, the atmosphere, and heaven. It is the sky that is visible and the spiritual heaven where God dwells. Heaven implies happiness, power, and eternity.
LXIII “before” = enopios. Related to “man” in v11. From en (in, on, at, by, with) + ops (see note XII above). This is literally “in sight of.” It means before in a literal or figurative sense.

19 I am no longer worthyLXIV to be calledLXV your son; treatLXVI me like one of your hired hands.”’ 

Notes on verse 19

LXIV “worthy” = axios. Related to “gathered” in v13. From ago (see note XXVI above). This is related to weight or worth – deserving, suitable, corresponding, due reward.
LXV “called” = kaleo. Related to keleuo (to command, order, direct); from kelomai (to urge on). This is to call by name, invite, to name, bid, summon, call aloud.
LXVI “treat” = poieo. This is to make, do, act, construct, abide, or cause.

20 So he set offLXVII and went to his father. But while he wasLXVIII still far off,LXIX his father sawLXX him and was filled with compassion;LXXI

Notes on verse 20a

LXVII “set off” = anistemi. Same as “get up” in v18. See note LX above.
LXVIII “was” = apecho. Related to “had” in v11. 19x in NT. From apo (from, away from) + echo (see note XIII above). This is to be distant, have fully, abstain, be paid, be distant, be enough. It is having something by detaching it from something else or releasing something else.
LLXIX “far off” = makran. Related to “distant” in v13. 9x in NT. From makros (see note XXVIII above). This is far off, remote, far away in a literal or figurative sense.
LXX “saw” = horao. Related to “man” in v11 & “before” in v18. See note XII above.
LXXI “filled with compassion” = splagchnizomai. 12x in NT– 8x of Jesus having compassion on people or crowds. From splanxnon (inner organs, entrails; seen as the root of emotions). This is moved to compassion from deep within oneself – visceral empathy or sympathy, being deeply moved.

he ranLXXII and put his arms around himLXXIII and kissedLXXIV him. 

21 Then the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’LXXV 

Notes on verses 20b-21

LXXII “ran” = trecho. 20x in NT. To run, make progress, rush. This is running like an athlete in a race. Figuratively, to work quickly towards a goal in a focused way.
LXXIII “put his arms around him” = epipipto + epi + ho + trachelos. Literally, “fell upon his neck.” Epipipto is 11x in NT. From epi (on, upon, to, against, what is fitting) + pipto (to fall in a literal or figurative sense). This is fall upon. It could be in the sense of pressing in on, being seized with fear, being embraced (as in the parable of the prodigal son in Luke 15:20), bending over, being insulted, or the Spirit falling on people. So, it is coming upon someone with more or less affection or violence. Trachelos is 7x in NT. Probably from trachus (rough, uneven). This is the neck or throat. It can also refer to an embrace. It shares a root with the word “trachea.”
LXXIV “kissed” = kataphileo. 6x in NT– 2x of Judas’s betrayal, 2x of the woman who washes Jesus’s feet and kisses them (Lk 7:38, 45), 1x when the father kisses the prodigal son (Lk 15:20), and 1x when Paul kisses the Ephesian elders goodbye (Acts 20:37). From kata (down, against, according to) + phileo (friendship love and fondness with personal attachment; kiss as a sign of love deriving from this personal affection -cherishing); {from philos (dear, beloved, a friend, an associate; friendship with personal affection, a trusted confidante; love from personal experience with another person)}. This is kissing with great emotion or kissing repeatedly, earnestly, affectionately.
LXXV Some manuscripts add, “make me as one of your hired hands” = poieo + ego + hos + heis + ho + misthios + su. Poieo is the same as “treat” in v19. See note LXVI above.

22 But the father said to his slaves,LXXVI ‘Quickly,LXXVII bring outLXXVIII a robeLXXIX—the bestLXXX one—and put it onLXXXI him;

Notes on verse 22a

LXXVI “slaves” = doulos. Related to “traveled” in v13. Perhaps from deo (see note XXVII above). This is used for a servant or for a slave, enslaved. It refers to someone who belongs to someone else. But, it could be voluntary (choosing to be enslaved to pay off debt) or involuntary (captured in war and enslaved). It is used as a metaphor for serving Christ. Slavery was not inherited (i.e. the children of slaves were not assumed to be slaves) and slaves could buy their way to freedom. Slavery was generally on a contractual basis (that is for the duration of how long it took you to pay your debt and/or save up enough money to buy your freedom).
LXXVII “quickly” = tachu. 12x in NT. From tachus (quickly, promptly; without unreasonable delay). This is quickly, but not immediately. It is without undue delay.
LXXVIII “bring out” = ekphero. 8x in NT. From ek (from, from out of) + phero (to bear, bring, lead, make known publicly; to carry in a literal or figurative sense). This is to produce, carry forth, yield.
LXXIX “robe” = stole. Related to “get up” in v18. 9x in NT–the scribes who want to be greeted with respect in marketplaces (Mk 12:13; Lk 20:46), the angel presenting as a young man at the resurrection (Mk 16:5), the robe brought for the prodigal son (Lk 15:22), and the attire of the martyrs and saints in heaven in Revelation 6, 7, and 22. From stello (to set, arrange, prepare, provide for); {probably from histemi (see note LX above)}. This is clothing, in particular a long, flowing robe associated with elites.
LXXX “best” = protos. From pro (before, first, in front of, earlier). This is what is first, which could be the most important, the first in order, the main one, the chief.
LXXXI “put…on” = enduo. From en (in, on, at, by, with, among) + duno (to sink into, set like the sun); {from duo (to go down, sink, or set)}. This is to put on as when one puts on clothes. It is the idea of sinking into one’s clothing.

putLXXXII a ringLXXXIII on his fingerLXXXIV and sandalsLXXXV on his feet.LXXXVI 

Notes on verse 22b

LXXXII “put” = didomi. Same as “give” in v12. See note XVIII above.
LXXXIII “ring” = daktulios. 1x in NT. From daktulos (finger); probably from deka (ten). This is a ring that is worn on your finger.
LXXXIV “finger” = cheir. This is the hand in a literal sense. Figuratively, the hand is the means a person uses to accomplish things so it can also mean power, means, or instrument.
LXXXV “sandals” = hupodema. Related to “traveled” in v13 & “slaves” in v22. 10x in NT. From hupodeo (to bind under wear on the feet); {from hupo (by, under, about, subordinate to) + deo (see note XXVII above)}. This is a sandal – something bound under the sole.
LXXXVI “feet” = pous. This is foot in a literal or figurative sense.

23 And getLXXXVII the fattedLXXXVIII calfLXXXIX and killXC it, and let us eatXCI and celebrate;XCII 

Notes on verse 23

LXXXVII “get” = phero. Related to “bring out” in v22. See note LXXVIII above.
LXXXVIII “fatted” = siteutos. 3x in NT– all in Luke 15. From sitos (any kind of grain that you can eat. It is usually wheat, but it can also be barley and other grains). This is grain-fed or fattened.
LXXXIX “calf” = moschos. 6x in NT. This is a young cow of either sex or young shoot.
XC “kill” = thuo. Related to “would gladly” in v16. 14x in NT. See note XLIX above.
XCI “eat” = phago. This is to eat or figuratively to consume like rust does.
XCII “celebrate” = euphraino. 14x in NT. From eu (good, well, well done) + phren (diaphragm, heart, intellect, understanding; figurative for personal opinion or inner mindset; thought regulating action; sympathy, feelings, cognition); {perhaps from phrao (to rein in or curb)}. This is to be glad, revel, feast. It is having a positive outlook, rejoicing.

24 for this son of mine was deadXCIII and is alive again;XCIV he was lostXCV and is found!’XCVI And they began to celebrate.

Notes on verse 24

XCIII “dead” = nekros. Perhaps from nekus (corpse). This is dead of lifeless, mortal, corpse. It can also be used figuratively for powerless or ineffective. It is where the word “necrotic” comes from.
XCIV “is alive again” = anazao. Related to “living” in v13. 2x in NT. From ana (up, again, back, anew) + zao (see note XXXIII above). This is to live again, revive, resurrect. It can be literal or figurative.
XCV “lost” = apollumi. Same as “dying” in v17. See note LVIII above.
XCVI “is found” = heurisko. This is to find, learn, or obtain. It is to discover something, which generally implies a period of searching for it. This is to find in a literal or figurative sense. This is where the word “heuristic” comes from.

25 “Now his elderXCVII son was in the field; and when he came and approachedXCVIII the house,XCIX

Notes on verse 25a

XCVII “elder” = presbuteros. From presbus (old man). This is an elder as one of the Sanhedrin and also in the Christian assembly in the early church.
XCVIII “approached” = eggizo. Same as “coming near” in v1. See note V above.
XCIX “house” = oikia. From oikos (house – the building, the household, the family, descendants; the temple). This is a house, household, goods, property, family, or means.

he heardC musicCI and dancing.CII 

Notes on verse 25b

C “heard” = akouo. Same as “listen” in v1. See note VI above.
CI “music” = sumphonia. Related to “said” in v17. 1x in NT. From sumphonos (harmonious, agreeing, consent; having one voice i.e. a shared understanding); {from sun (with, together with) + phone (voice, sound, tone or noise; also a language or dialect); {probably from phemi (see note LIV above)}}. This is where the word “symphony” comes from. It is music with harmonized instruments.
CII “dancing” = choros. 1x in NT. This is a group dance, usually in a ring – a choir dancing. It might imply that they were also singing. It is where the word “chorus” comes from.

26 He calledCIII one of the slavesCIV and askedCV what was going on.CVI 

Notes on verse 26

CIII “called” = proskaleo. Related to “called” in v19. From pros (at, to, toward, with) + kaleo (see note LXV above). This is to call to oneself, summon.
CIV “slaves” = pais. Perhaps from paio (to strike or sting). This is child, youth, servant, or slave.
CV “asked” = punthanomai. 12x in NT. This is to ask in order to learn. It is not to ask a favor (erotao in Greek), to demand something felt to be owed (aiteo), to search for a hidden thing (zeteo), or to ask for urgent help (deomai). This is to figure something out through questions.
CVI “was going on” = eimi. Same as “were” in v1. See note IV above.

27 He replied, ‘Your brotherCVII has come,CVIII and your father has killed the fatted calf, because he has got him backCIX safe and sound.’CX 

Notes on verse 27

CVII “brother” = adelphos. From a (with, community, fellowship) + delphus (womb). This is a brother in a literal or figurative sense. It is also used of another member of the Church.
CVIII “come” = heko. This is to come or arrive as at a final destination or goal. It can also mean being present in a literal or figurative sense.
CIX “got…back” = apolambano. 10x in NT. From apo (from, away from) + lambano (active acceptance/taking of what is available or what has been offered; emphasizes the choice and action of the individual). This is to receive back, separate, to get one’s due.
CX “safe and sound” = hugiaino. 12x in NT. From hugies (healthy, whole, pure, normal, restored, wholesome; figuratively, sound or true teaching); from the base of auxano (to grow or enlarge, whether literal or figurative). This is healthy, sound, reasonable, pure, total health. This is the root that “hygiene” comes from.

28 Then he became angryCXI and refusedCXII to go in.CXIII His father came outCXIV and began to pleadCXV with him. 

Notes on verse 28

CXI “became angry” = orgizo. 8x in NT. From orge (impulse, wrath, anger, passion, punishment); from orgao (something that teems or stews; this is anger rising from prolonged personal contact that is fixed rather than an angry outburst; it can also be anger that stems from an individual’s sense of right and wrong, justice, etc.). This is being angry, enraged, exasperated. It is a fixed, sustained anger.
CXII “refused” = ou + thelo. Literally, “was not willing.” Thelo is to wish, desire, will, or intend. It is to choose or prefer in a literal or figurative sense. It can also mean inclined toward or take delight in. It can have a sense of being ready to act on the impulse in question.
CXIII “go in” = eiserchomai. Related to “came” in v17. From eis (to, into, for, among) + erchomai (see note LIII above). This is to go in in a literal or figurative sense.
CXIV “came out” = exerchomai. Related to “came” in v17 & “go in” in v28. From ek (from, from out of) + erchomai (see note LIII above). This is to go out, depart, escape, proceed from, spread news abroad.
CXV “plead” = parakaleo. Related to “called” in v19 & “called” in v26. From para (beside, by, in the presence of) + kaleo (see note LXV above). This is to call to, summon, invite, request, or beg. It can also be exhort or admonish. Also, this can be encourage, comfort, or console. This word has legal overtones and is used of one’s advocate in a courtroom. It is the root of the name of the Holy Spirit “paraclete” is our advocate and comforter.

29 But he answered his father, ‘Listen!CXVI For all these years I have been working like a slaveCXVII for you, and I have never disobeyedCXVIII your command;CXIX yet you have never given me even a young goatCXX so that I might celebrate with my friends.CXXI 

Notes on verse 29

CXVI “listen” = idou. From eido (to be aware, see, know, remember, appreciate). This is see! Lo! Behold! Look! Used to express surprise and or draw attention to the statement.
CXVII “working like a slave” = douleuo. Related to “traveled” in v13 & “slaves” and “sandals” in v22. From doulos (see note LXXVI above). This is to be a slave, serve, do service, obey, be devoted.
CXVIII “disobeyed” = parerchomai. Related to “came” in v17 & “go in” and “came out” in v28. From para (from beside, by) + erchomai (see note LIII above). This is pass by, neglect, disregard. Figuratively, it can mean to perish or to become void.
CXIX “command” = entole. Related to “tax collectors” in v1. From entellomai (to charge, command, give orders or instructions) {from en (in, on, at, by, with) + tellomai (to accomplish); {from telos (see note II above)}. This is an order, command, ordinance, or law. It focuses on the purpose of the command and its end result.
CXX “young goat” = eriphos. 2x in NT. Perhaps from the same as erion (wool); from eiros (wool). This comes from the root in the sense of hairiness – a kid or male goat.
CXXI “friends” = philos. Related to “kissed” in v20. See note LXXIV above.

30 But when this son of yours came back, who has devouredCXXII your propertyCXXIII with prostitutes,CXXIV you killed the fatted calf for him!’ 

Notes on verse 30

CXXII “devoured” = katesthio. 15x in NT. From kata (down, against, throughout, among) + esthio (to eat or figuratively to devour or consume like rust). This is to eat up, to consume totally so that there is nothing left. It can also be to annoy, injure, or squander.
CXXIII “property” = bios. Same as “property” in v12. See note XXIII above.
CXXIV “prostitutes” = porne. 12x in NT. From pornos (fornicator or immoral person); perhaps from pernemi (to sell off or export); related to piprasko (to sell with travel involved; to sell into slavery; to be devoted to); from perao (to travel); from peran (over, beyond). This is prostitute. Can be used figuratively to refer to a community that is taken with idolatry.

31 Then the father said to him, ‘Son,CXXV you are alwaysCXXVI with me, and all that is mine is yours. 32 But we had toCXXVII celebrate and rejoice,CXXVIII because this brother of yours was dead and has come to life;CXXIX he was lost and has been found.’”

Notes on verses 31-32

CXXV “son” = teknon. From tikto (to beget, bring forth, produce). This is a child, descendant, or inhabitant.
CXXVI “always” = pantote. Related to “all” in v1. From pas (see note I above) + tote (then, whether past or future); {from hote (when); from ho (the)}. This is literally every when. It is always, at all times.
CXXVII “had to” = dei. Related to “traveled” in v13 & “slaves” and “sandals” in v22 & “working like a slave” in v29. From deo (see note XXVII above). This is what is necessary or proper. It is what is needed or what one should do – a duty or something inevitable. This refers to something absolutely necessary.
CXXVIII “rejoice” = chairo. From char– (to extend favor, lean towards, be inclined to be favorable towards). This is to rejoice, be glad or cheerful; a greeting. This is the root verb that the Greek word for “grace” comes from (charis).
CXXIX “come to life” = zao. Same as “living” in v13. See note XXXIII above.

Image credit: “Part 2 – The Prodigal Turns” by Cara B. Hochhalter, 2019.

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