THEN the tax collectors and sinners drew near to him to hear him.
And the scribes and Pharisees murmured, saying, He receives even the sinners and eats with them.
So Jesus told them this parable:
What man among you has a hundred sheep, and if one of them should get lost, would he not leave the ninety and nine in the open, and go in search of the one which is lost, until he finds it?
And when he finds it he rejoices and takes it on his shoulders.
And he comes to his house, and invites his friends and neighbors, and says to them, Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost.
I say to you that such will be the joy in heaven over one sinner who repents, more than over ninety and nine righteous who need no repentance.
Or what woman who has ten coins, and should lose one of them, would not light a lamp and sweep the house and search for it carefully until she finds it?
And when she finds it, she calls her women friends and neighbors, and says to them, Rejoice with me, for I have found my coin which was lost.
I say to you that such will be the joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.
¶ And Jesus said to them again, A man had two sons;
And his younger son said to him, My father, give me the portion which is coming to me from your house.
And he divided to them his possessions.
And after a few days, his younger son gathered everything that was his share, and went to a far country, and there he wasted his wealth in extravagant living.
And when all he had was gone, there was a severe famine in that country;
and he began to be in need.
So he went and got acquainted with one of the citizens of that country;
and he sent him to the field to feed the swine.
And he craved to fill his stomach with the husks that the swine were eating;
and yet no man would give him.
And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired workers are now in my father’s house who have plenty of bread, and I am here perishing with hunger!
I will rise and go to my father and say to him, My father, I have sinned before heaven and before you;
And I am no longer worthy to be called your son;
just make me like one of your hired workers.
And he rose up and came to his father.
And while he was yet at a distance, his father saw him and had compassion on him, and he ran and fell on his neck and kissed him.
And his son said to him, My father, I have sinned before heaven and before you, and I am not worthy to be called your son.
But his father said to his servants, Bring the best robe and put it on him and put a ring on his hand and shoes on his feet;
And bring and kill the fat ox, and let us eat and be merry;
For this my son was dead and has come to life;
he was lost and is found.
And they began to be merry.
But his elder son was in the field;
and as he came near the house, he heard the voice of the singing of many.
And he called one of the boys, and asked him what it was all about.
He said to him, Your brother has come;
and your father has killed the fat ox because he received him safe and well.
And he became angry and would not go in;
so his father came out and besought him.
But he said to his father, Behold, how many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed your commandment;
and yet you never gave me even a kid that I might make merry with my friends.
But for this son of yours, after he had wasted your wealth with harlots and come back, you have killed the fat ox.
His father said to him, My son, you are always with me, and everything which is mine is yours.
It was right for us to make merry and rejoice;
for this your brother was dead and has come to life;
and was lost and is found.