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The Prodigal Son
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Biblical Character
    Featured in one of Jesus' parables (Luke 15:11-32)
    Younger of two sons
    Demands his share of the estate, then travels to another country
    After a famine breaks out, returns home
    Father celebrates the return by ordering the 'fatted calf' killed for a feast
    Older son kvetches that dad never showed this kind of appreciation for him while he was loyally working at home
    Father replies that they are celebrating because the Prodigal 'was dead and is alive again; he was lost and now is found'
    He blows all his money on living it up and having a good time.
    His motive for returning is less 'Gosh, I miss dad' than 'Damn, I'm hungry.'
    I cannot be the only person who, when he heard the story in Sunday school, sympathized with the older brother: sure his complaint contains a lot of sour grapes, but the dude has a point.
    His story inspired several medieval and Renaissance paintings, popular hymns and a blues song covered by the Rolling Stones.
    On his return, he tells his father, 'I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.'
    His story is a metaphor for God's mercy, which certain smart-alecky profile writers will probably need to throw themselves on someday.

Credit: C. Fishel


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