Chapter 2: The Religious View

  1. Who do you know that you’ve perceived as righteous? What made them righteous in your eyes?

      2.    Write out Matthew 23:27-28: 

      3.    The religious view of righteousness is usually founded on _________________ appearances.

      4.    Righteousness is a matter of:

          a. good works

          b. influence

          c. money and power

          d. how long you’ve been saved

          e. the heart

      5.    Can you relate to the Prodigal Son? Explain.

      6.    Match the elements of the story of the Prodigal Son:

          The Estate                                               Salvation (eternal life)

          The Prodigal (younger) son                The Kingdom of God

          The older son                                         The believer

          The inheritance                                     The religious view

          The foreign land                                    Worldliness and sin

7.    Following are several statements from the chapter that describe the younger son’s attitude:

        “The younger son was not happy with his situation at home.”

        “Perhaps the Prodigal Son’s dissatisfaction had something to do with his station in the family.”

        “He didn’t like the father’s way of doing things. He didn’t want anyone to tell him what do. He didn’t like living by the rules of the house, and he refused to accept authority. He thought the restrictions of estate life crimped his style, and he didn’t want to contribute to it or comply with it. He was rebellious. All he wanted was the promise—his inheritance—so he could go about living life his way.”

Have you ever had these thoughts (or similar thoughts)? Particularly, have you been rebellious? Explain.

Re-write the statements from the chapter above, filling in the blanks with your own attitudes.

        8.    Referring to your answers above (Question 7), make a list of the specifics. Exactly what happened? What were your thoughts? (NOTE: You may wish to make a list on the back of this sheet.) 

        9.   “Surveying the events of this story, we can suspect that the younger son had an issue with his heart early on.”

Referring to your answers above (Question 8), at what age did you begin to think in a way that led to trouble? Make a note beside each one.

Was there an incident that triggered your broken thought processes each time? Note that too.

        10.   Have you had a PIGPEN experience? Describe it.

        11.   The Prodigal Son found that his inheritance wasn’t enough. He needed more! Why is salvation and the promise of eternal life not enough to get you through this life?

        12.  He’d lost more than just his inheritance; he’d lost his dignity. This boy had been changed.”

How did sin and your pigpen experience change you?



“This young man was forced to get real with himself. Nothing was going to change unless he did some things differently.”

What must you do differently to get a different result going forward? (Answer this question from a HEART perspective—not HOW I SHOULD ACT but HOW I SHOULD THINK.)


Righteousness is not about religion at all!

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