Why The Title, ‘The Prodigal Thought’?

rembrant-prodigal-son-detailI once looked into contributing regularly for an online Christian magazine. When asked the title of my column, I gave the name, The Prodigal Truth. Though one cannot very well know tone of voice or body language through email, I think the title somewhat shocked the editor. The title did not sound overly Christian, possibly even anti-Christian in one way or another. And it is understandable. I suppose the same might stand true with the title of this blog. Thus, I find the need to provide a little helpful explanation for the choice of such a title, since words are life and semantics are important, at least from my standpoint.

I know God has placed a desire deep within me to teach, explain Scriptural and theological truths, to exegete and understand what all Christians might not be so excited about studying. But I must make clear that I do not do so (or do not plan to do so) with the aim of sounding smart and theologically noble. I do all of this with the purpose of seeing people set free.

Jesus did teach, ‘…you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free’ (John 8:32). Truth equals freedom. Not necessarily 2 + 2 = 4, although that could be helpful. But rather the truth of God coming forth and setting captives free – in their minds, in their hearts, even in their bodies. Set free from fear, from depression, from self-contempt, from anxiety, from bondage, from false concepts about our Father, and so much more. And that’s where I want to go.

I do not believe we are called to study the Word so we can write systematic theological treatises, though those can be helpful. I believe the people of God are called to dive into the Word so that we can know the truth and be set free by it.

But some of our thoughts have gone ‘prodigal’, if you will. By this, I mean they have gone astray, gone down the wrong path. Not so much along the lines of heresy or perverse thinking, though maybe for some. But rather our thoughts have gone astray from a sound and helpful understanding of the Scriptures. I am not trying to sound all pious and overly religious about reading our Bibles twice a day and memorising five Scriptures each week. But there has been some unhelpful teaching out their on specific topics, and this has led people down wrong paths in their own thinking. It has even caused some to be seriously locked up.

Therefore, I find myself developing a heart to try and bring us back to true Biblical teaching. Again, all for the sake of seeing us set free by the truth so we can fully and faithfully love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength. As a result of this, over the next days, weeks, months, years, and maybe even longer, I give you The Prodigal Thought.

The title is not about seeing our thoughts run ‘prodigal’. Rather, it this blog is about seeing God reel in any prodigal thoughts as He reveals His truth. I expect that you will not agree with everything I write, but know that, if you are a Christ-follower, then we are starting from the same standing ground. So read, ponder, consider, discuss these articles. Then, when the day is over, I hope we can all truly be encouraged that our thoughts were corralled in by the truth of God and that we tasted a little more freedom as well.

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3 thoughts on “Why The Title, ‘The Prodigal Thought’?

  1. Interesting insight on Prodigal thoughts. Assuming somewhat of a connotative connection with the popularly misnomered parable “the prodigal son” I am reminded that the story was not just about the wayward son, but it was also about the legalistic older brother and the wonderful, jubilant, and redemptive father.

    With that said, my interpretation of the potential of this blog, and other quasi-theological communities like it, is that of having thoughts that may stray from the Big Brother thinking, which ultimately lead us back to the Father. You identified one error of Prodigal thinking, I only mean to highlight the opposite error (legalism) that enriches my understanding of these kinds of endeavors.

    On a glaring double-standard, frozen-chosen-esque, illiteracy-encouraging side note, what are your thoughts on writing shorter articles? I myself have found greater response and discussion, as well as a honing of writing skills, in writing shorter articles. Just a thought. I won’t split the “church” over it, though my participation may be limited in proportion to the length of posts.

  2. Very exciting, Scott =D. I particularly like your clearly-described intention with the issues, so it will be fun to continue in dialogue on these great subjects =).

    -ACR

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