15:1 Then drew near unto 1 him a all the publicans and sinners for to hear him.
(1) We must not give up on those who have gone out of the way, but according to the example of Christ we must take great pains for them. 15:11 2 And he said, A certain man had two sons:
(a) Some publicans and sinners came to Christ from all areas.
(2) Men by their voluntary falling from God, having robbed themselves of the benefits which they received from him, cast themselves headlong into infinite calamities: but God of his singular goodness, offering himself freely to those whom he called to repentance, through the greatness of their misery with which they were humbled, not only gently receives them, but also enriches them with far greater gifts and blesses them with the greatest bliss. 15:17 3 And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my fathers have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!
(3) The beginning of repentance is the acknowledging of the mercy of God, which encourages us to hope expectantly. 15:18 I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against b heaven, and before thee,
(b) Against God, because he is said to dwell in heaven. 15:21 4 And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.
(4) In true repentance there is a consciousness of our sins, joined with sorrow and shame, and from this springs a confession, after which follows forgiveness. 15:25 5 Now his elder son was in the field: and as he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard musick and dancing.
(5) Those who truly fear God desire to have all men join them in fearing him.