Essay on Repentance: The Story of The Prodigal Son

Essay on Repentance: The Story of The Prodigal Son

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The “Prodigal Son” is much more than a short story. Though seemingly simple and straightforward, it encompasses many important themes and symbols. The three main characters (Father, younger song, older son) all represent one aspect of the religious undertone that is carried throughout the duration of this tale. While the concept of family is prevalent in this story, what is actually more important is the symbol of Jesus and his followers that is communicated through the idea of family. The family embodies the idea of God, sinners, and Pharisees. Each character in the prodigal son represents one of these three symbols, and through the use of the symbols the audience is able to accept the idea of sinning, and layer it with the idea of repentance, in order to maintain the religious foundation this story was built upon.
The first symbol that we see in the story is the younger son. Right away in the first sentence we gather a sense of the type of person he is. He says, “Father give me the portion of goods that falleth to me” (27). “Even though the son would eventually get goods from his father, by asking this question while his father was alive, he is implying that he wishes his father to be dead” (Questions). Soon after he receives his share, the son gathers all of his belongings and takes a journey into a far country. We see the first major symbol of Jesus and a sinner in the quote above. When the father gives his son the money and watches him go, “this is a representation of Jesus letting a sinner go in his own way” (Question). However, the son did not succeed on his own with the giving’s of his father, “There he wasted his substance with riotous living… And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swin...


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...it also highlighted the religious figures to which the three men represent, and the way in which male dominance was important in transmitting the story’s overall message of repentance.



Works Cited

Blank, Wayne. "Who were the Pharisees." Daily Bible Study.
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Fairchild, Mary. "The Prodigal Son." About. N.p., 2011. Web. 4
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son.htm>.
Fleischer, Roland. "Rembrandt, Rubens, and the art of their
time." Google Books. Department of Art History, 2011. Web.
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"Meaning of the Prodigal Son." Gotquestions. N.p., 2011. Web.
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