Re: When does regeneration takes place?
Good post, John 14:6. In regards to the parable of the prodigal son, I am not going to give a detailed answer, I will just mention something I learned when I was studying hermeneutics. When one studies parables, it is important to determine the central point that the parable is trying to teach. Looking at the prodigal son, we need to consider the context.
Originally Posted by John146
1. Who was Jesus speaking to? The pharisees and scribes.
2. What was the occasion of this parable? The fact that the scribes and pharisees were murmering about Jesus eating with publicans and sinners.
3. We must take note that the parable of the prodigal son is only one part of a larger parable that includes the lost sheep and the lost coin as well. I believe all three parables are one.
4. What is the central point of this parable? It is summed up in the verses below...
Luke 15: 7 I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance
Luke 15: 10 Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
Luke 15: 32 It was right that we should make merry and be glad, for your brother was dead and is alive again, and was lost and is found.’”
The younger son represented the publicans and sinners who were coming to Jesus, the older son represented the religious scribes and pharisees. There was joy in heaven and in the presence of the angels over the publicans and sinners who were coming to Jesus, yet there was no joy in the hearts of the men who claimed to know God, to love God, and claimed to serve Him.
"It is meet that we should make merry...", in other words Jesus was telling the pharisees that if they really loved God like they claimed to, they would rejoice that sinners were repenting. This is an indictment on the scribes and Pharisees, and possibly an invitation to recognize that their hearts were just as far from God as immoral sinners, and on that realization come to their own senses and repent. Notice the father went out to encourage the older son to come inside and join the celebration, but rather than accepting the invite like the saints and angels do, Jesus never gives the response of the older son. This is because the older son was the ones he was talking to, ( scribes and pharisees), and they needed to make up their mind if they were going to get with God's program or stay outside in the cold wallowing in their own hypocrisy.
As far as in what sense the younger son was alive and then dead then alive again, I cannot say for sure. Since the younger son represents the publicans and sinners, I do not think it is referring to people that were once born again, but that it is speaking of sinners in general. I am open to hear other views, though.
As far as the rest of your post, we are thinking alike in this discussion.
1 John 1:7- But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.
2 Corinthians 7:1- Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.