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The Parable about the Faithful Shepherd(A)

15 Now all the tax collectors and sinners kept coming to listen to Jesus.[a] But the Pharisees and the scribes kept complaining, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” So he told them this parable:

“Suppose one of you has 100 sheep and loses one of them. He leaves the 99 in the wilderness and looks for the one that is lost until he finds it, doesn’t he? When he finds it, he puts it on his shoulders and rejoices. Then he goes home, calls his friends and neighbors together, and says to them, ‘Rejoice with me, because I’ve found my lost sheep!’ In the same way, I tell you that there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over 99 righteous people who don’t need to repent.”

The Story of the Diligent Housewife

“Or suppose a woman has ten coins and loses one of them.[b] She lights a lamp, sweeps the house, and searches carefully until she finds it, doesn’t she? When she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me, because I have found the coin that I lost!’ 10 In the same way, I tell you that there is joy in the presence of God’s angels over one sinner who repents.”

The Story of the Loving Father

11 Then Jesus[c] said, “A man had two sons. 12 The younger one told his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So the father[d] divided his property between them. 13 A few days later, the younger son gathered everything he owned and traveled to a distant country. There he wasted it all[e] on wild living. 14 After he had spent everything, a severe famine took place throughout that country, and he began to be in need. 15 So he went out to work for one of the citizens of that country, who sent him into his fields to feed pigs. 16 No one would give him anything, even though he would gladly have filled himself with the husks the pigs were eating.

17 “Then he came to his senses and said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have more food than they can eat, and here I am starving to death! 18 I will get up, go to my father, and say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven[f] and you. 19 I don’t deserve to be called your son anymore. Treat me like one of your hired men.”’

20 “So he got up and went to his father. While he was still far away, his father saw him and was filled with compassion. He ran to his son,[g] threw his arms around him, and kissed him affectionately. 21 Then his son told him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven[h] and you. I don’t deserve to be called your son anymore.’[i] 22 But the father told his servants, ‘Hurry! Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. 23 Bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let’s eat and celebrate! 24 Because my son was dead and has come back to life. He was lost and has been found.’ And they began to celebrate.

25 “Now the father’s[j] older son was in the field. As he was coming back to the house, he heard music and dancing. 26 So he called to one of the servants and asked what was happening. 27 The servant[k] told him, ‘Your brother has come home, and your father has killed the fattened calf because he got him back safely.’

28 “Then the older son[l] became angry and wouldn’t go into the house.[m] So his father came out and began to plead with him. 29 But he answered his father, ‘Listen! All these years I’ve worked like a slave for you. I’ve never disobeyed a command of yours. Yet you’ve never given me so much as a young goat for a festival[n] so I could celebrate with my friends. 30 But this son of yours spent your money on prostitutes, and when he came back, you killed the fattened calf for him!’

31 “His father[o] told him, ‘My child, you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. 32 But we had to celebrate and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead and has come back to life. He was lost and has been found.’”


  1. Luke 15:1 Lit. him
  2. Luke 15:8 Lit. one coin
  3. Luke 15:11 Lit. he
  4. Luke 15:12 Lit. he
  5. Luke 15:13 Lit. wasted his possessions
  6. Luke 15:18 I.e. God
  7. Luke 15:20 The Gk. lacks to his son
  8. Luke 15:21 I.e. God
  9. Luke 15:21 Other mss. read anymore. Treat me like one of your hired men.
  10. Luke 15:25 Lit. Now his
  11. Luke 15:27 Lit. He
  12. Luke 15:28 Lit. he
  13. Luke 15:28 Lit. wouldn’t go in
  14. Luke 15:29 The Gk. lacks for a festival
  15. Luke 15:31 Lit. He