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Theology for the common man

4th Sunday of Lent

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Many of us know today's evangelical parable as the parable about a prodigal son but in reality it is a parable about a merciful father who represents a true face of God. We know well this parable, when a father having two sons allows the younger to leave his house and then this younger son, after years of his carousal life, decides to come back being totally transformed. The older son who didn’t have the same opportunity of being away from the house and losing his portion of the father’s heritage, justly accuses and is mad at his father for his unjustly attitude, as the father embraces his younger son. Everything seems to turn against the goodness of the father, whose attitude from the point of view of human justice looks indeed not logical and unjust. Nevertheless, the divine point of view represented by the father from this parable is totally different. God seems to lose, in term, to gain what was lost. Out of his love He allows a man to leave from his source of love and he suffers because of this decision, but always waits, hoping that he would come back some day. The very moment of his comeback is a great familiar feast which he celebrates, throwing a big party. We as human beings don’t understand this divine attitude and as the older brother we rebel against the father claiming a pure human justice. If God proceeded in this human logic not one of us would be saved. This is the lesson of divine mercy showed to us by Jesus Christ in that uncanny parable. The goodness and mercy of God were also a reason why the unfaithful Israelites entered the promise land and enjoyed its fruits, as the first reading speaks about. In Jesus Christ, then God shows mercy to everyone not counting our sins but expecting our coming back to Him.