Dear Boys and Girls,
The Two Brothers
Do you know what a parable is? If not, perhaps this well-known explanation might help you: A parable is an earthly story with a heavenly meaning. Jesus taught many lessons in parables, and here is one of those parables that Jesus told when He lived on earth.
A certain man had two sons, Jesus told the people. One day the man went to his older son and said, “Son, go and work in my vineyard today”. He immediately replied, “I will not go.” But afterwards he was very sorry that he had answered his father like that, and he changed his mind, and went and did what his father had asked.
The father also went to the second son and said the same thing: “Son, go and work in my vineyard today.” He immediately replied “I go sir.” But this second son did not keep his word, and he did not go and work in his father's vineyard.
“Now,” asked Jesus, when He told that story to the people, “which of those two sons obeyed his father?” And the people immediately replied, “The first one.” And then, Jesus explained the heavenly meaning of that earthly story. “I tell you,” He said, “that sinners who are sorry for their sins will enter heaven before those who only pretend to be righteous.”
Now, boys and girls, I wonder what your answer would have been if Jesus had asked you that question? Would it have been the same as the people? I hope so; because that was the right answer. You see, Jesus does not want us to think that we can promise to obey God and then, not carry out our promises. We are not to “pretend” with God, the way the second son pretended with his father, for God knows all that we think as well as all that we do.
There is a big word in the Bible for being truly sorry for our sins, and that word is repentance. We must believe that we have sinned against God and that we are sinners – that we have done wrong, just like the first son – and then, like him repent – be sorry for our sins, and ask Christ to be our Saviour and forgive us. He will, If we truly mean it.