And the son said unto him, father
Or "my father", as the Syriac version reads; and the Persic version adds, "pardon me": sin lay heavy on him, and he wanted a view and application of pardoning grace, though he seems to be prevented making this request by the kiss he received from his father:
I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight;
this is what he determined to say, and was allowed to say, having a deep sense of his sin and vileness, and which was increased by the love and kindness his father had shown him. The phrase is Jewish; (See Gill on Luke 15:18) to which may be added, what is elsewhere said F3,
``what is the sense of that passage, ( Psalms 12:4 ) "who have said, with our tongues we will prevail?" &c. it designs all the transgressions a man sins against earth; and if (Mymvb Nyajwx) , "they sin against heaven", and earth; what is the sense of that in ( Psalms 73:9 ) ?''and am no more worthy to be called thy son:
so much he was suffered to say, which fully expresses his sense of his vileness and unworthiness: but he was not allowed to say, "make me as one of thy hired servants"; because this could not be granted; for a son is always a son, and cannot become a servant; see ( Galatians 4:6 Galatians 4:7 ) .
F3 T. Hieros Peah, fol. 16. 1.