The Meaning of Luke 15:32 Explained

Luke 15:32

KJV: It was meet that we should make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.

YLT: but to be merry, and to be glad, it was needful, because this thy brother was dead, and did live again, he was lost, and was found.'

Darby: But it was right to make merry and rejoice, because this thy brother was dead and has come to life again, and was lost and has been found.

ASV: But it was meet to make merry and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again ; and was lost, and is found.

What does Luke 15:32 Mean?

Context Summary

Luke 15:25-32 - The Son Who Never Came To His Father
Notice the difference between the Father's care for his elder son and the son's own estimate of his position, and you will see how easily you may miss the holy possibilities of your own life, if you allow yourself to be blinded by jealousy!
Ever with me; life was meant to be irradiated and blessed by the constant sense of God's nearness. We were meant to live in God and God in us. All that I have is thine; such is our wealthy condition, in the purpose of God, that all His divine resources, stored in Jesus, await the appropriation of our faith.
But if we fail to recognize our brother in the penitent thy son; if we shut ourselves out of the joy, because of some fancied slight, or of pharisaic pride, we miss our own truest blessedness. But God entreats us to come into it.
For Review Questions, see the e-Sword Book Comments. [source]

Chapter Summary: Luke 15

1  The parable of the lost sheep;
8  of the piece of silver;
11  of the prodigal son

Greek Commentary for Luke 15:32

It was meet [εδει]
Imperfect tense. It expressed a necessity in the father‘s heart and in the joy of the return that justifies the feasting. Ευπραντηναι — Euphranthēnai is used again (first aorist passive infinitive) and χαρηναι — charēnai (second aorist passive infinitive) is more than mere hilarity, deep-seated joy. The father repeats to the elder son the language of his heart used in Luke 15:24 to his servants. A real father could do no less. One can well imagine how completely the Pharisees and scribes (Luke 15:2) were put to silence by these three marvellous parables. The third does it with a graphic picture of their own attitude in the case of the surly elder brother. Luke was called a painter by the ancients. Certainly he has produced a graphic pen picture here of God‘s love for the lost that justifies forever the coming of Christ to the world to seek and to save the lost. It glorifies also soul-saving on the part of his followers who are willing to go with Jesus after the lost in city and country, in every land and of every race. [source]

Reverse Greek Commentary Search for Luke 15:32

Luke 9:25 Lose [ἀπολέσας]
“When he might have been saved” (Bengel). This word, in classical Greek, is used: 1. Of death in battle or elsewhere. 2. Of laying waste, as a city or heritage. 3. Of losing of life, property, or other objects. As an active verb, to kill or demolish. 4. Of being demoralized, morally abandoned or ruined, as children under bad influences. In New Testament of killing (Matthew 2:13; Matthew 12:14). 5. Of destroying and perishing, not only of human life, but of material and intellectual things (1 Corinthians 1:19; John 6:27; Mark 2:22; 1 Peter 1:7; James 1:11; Hebrews 1:11). 6. Of losing (Matthew 10:6, Matthew 10:42; Luke 15:4, Luke 15:6, Luke 15:8). Of moral abandonment (Luke 15:24, Luke 15:32). 7. Of the doom of the impenitent (Matthew 10:28; Luke 13:3; John 3:15; John 10:28; 2 Peter 3:9; Romans 2:12. [source]
Luke 16:19 Fine linen [βύσσον]
ByssusA yellowish flax, and the linen made from it. Herodotus says it was used for enveloping mummies (ii., 86), a statement confirmed by microscopic examinations. He also speaks of it as a bandage for a wound (vii., 181). It is the word used by the Septuagint for linen (Luke 15:23, Luke 15:24, Luke 15:29, Luke 15:32. Wyc., he ate, each day, shiningly. [source]
Luke 16:19 Purple [πορπυραν]
This purple dye was obtained from the purple fish, a species of mussel or μυρεχ — murex (1 Maccabees 4:23). It was very costly and was used for the upper garment by the wealthy and princes (royal purple). They had three shades of purple (deep violet, deep scarlet or crimson, deep blue). See also Mark 15:17, Mark 15:20; Revelation 18:12.Fine linen (βυσσον — busson).Byssus or Egyptian flax (India and Achaia also). It is a yellowed flax from which fine linen was made for undergarments. It was used for wrapping mummies. “Some of the Egyptian linen was so fine that it was called woven air” (Vincent). Here only in the N.T. for the adjective βυσσινος — bussinos occurs in Revelation 18:12; Revelation 19:8, Revelation 19:14.Faring sumptuously (ευπραινομενος λαμπρως — euphrainomenos lamprōs).Making merry brilliantly. The verb ευπραινομαι — euphrainomai we have already had in Luke 12:19; Luke 15:23, Luke 15:25, Luke 15:32. Λαμπρως — Lamprōs is an old adverb from λαμπρος — lampros brilliant, shining, splendid, magnificent. It occurs here only in the N.T. This parable apparently was meant for the Pharisees (Luke 16:14) who were lovers of money. It shows the wrong use of money and opportunity. [source]
Luke 16:19 Byssus []
or Egyptian flax (India and Achaia also). It is a yellowed flax from which fine linen was made for undergarments. It was used for wrapping mummies. “Some of the Egyptian linen was so fine that it was called woven air” (Vincent). Here only in the N.T. for the adjective βυσσινος — bussinos occurs in Revelation 18:12; Revelation 19:8, Revelation 19:14.Faring sumptuously (ευπραινομενος λαμπρως — euphrainomenos lamprōs).Making merry brilliantly. The verb ευπραινομαι — euphrainomai we have already had in Luke 12:19; Luke 15:23, Luke 15:25, Luke 15:32. Λαμπρως — Lamprōs is an old adverb from λαμπρος — lampros brilliant, shining, splendid, magnificent. It occurs here only in the N.T. This parable apparently was meant for the Pharisees (Luke 16:14) who were lovers of money. It shows the wrong use of money and opportunity. [source]
Luke 16:19 woven air []
” (Vincent). Here only in the N.T. for the adjective βυσσινος — bussinos occurs in Revelation 18:12; Revelation 19:8, Revelation 19:14.Faring sumptuously (ευπραινομενος λαμπρως — euphrainomenos lamprōs).Making merry brilliantly. The verb ευπραινομαι — euphrainomai we have already had in Luke 12:19; Luke 15:23, Luke 15:25, Luke 15:32. Λαμπρως — Lamprōs is an old adverb from λαμπρος — lampros brilliant, shining, splendid, magnificent. It occurs here only in the N.T. This parable apparently was meant for the Pharisees (Luke 16:14) who were lovers of money. It shows the wrong use of money and opportunity. [source]
Luke 16:19 Making merry brilliantly []
. The verb ευπραινομαι — euphrainomai we have already had in Luke 12:19; Luke 15:23, Luke 15:25, Luke 15:32. Λαμπρως — Lamprōs is an old adverb from λαμπρος — lampros brilliant, shining, splendid, magnificent. It occurs here only in the N.T. This parable apparently was meant for the Pharisees (Luke 16:14) who were lovers of money. It shows the wrong use of money and opportunity. [source]
Acts 2:26 Was glad [ηυπραντη]
First aorist (timeless here like the Hebrew perfect) passive indicative of ευπραινω — euphrainō (cf. Luke 15:32). Timeless also is “rejoiced” (ηγαλλιασατο — ēgalliasato). [source]
Romans 7:9 Revived [ἀνέζησεν]
Not came to life, but lived again. See Luke 15:24, Luke 15:32. The power of sin is originally and in its nature living; but before the coming of the commandment its life is not expressed. When the commandment comes, it becomes alive again. It lies dormant, like the beast at the door (Genesis 4:7), until the law stirs it up. The tendency of prohibitory law to provoke the will to resistance is frequently recognized in the classics. Thus, Horace: “The human race, presumptuous to endure all things, rushes on through forbidden wickedness” (Ode, i., 3,25). Ovid: “The permitted is unpleasing; the forbidden consumes us fiercely” (“Amores,” i., 19,3). “We strive against the forbidden and ever desire what is denied” (Id., i., 4,17). Seneca: “Parricides began with the law, and the punishment showed them the crime” (“De Clementia,” i., 23). Cato, in his speech on the Oppian law; says: “It is safer that a wicked man should even never be accused than that he should be acquitted; and luxury, if it had never been meddled with, would he more tolerable than it will be now, like a wild beast, irritated by having been chained and then let loose” (Livy, xxxiv., 4). [source]
Romans 15:10 Rejoice, ye Gentiles [ευπραντητε]
First aorist passive imperative of ευπραινω — euphrainō old word from ευ — eu well and πρην — phrēn mind. See note on Luke 15:32. Quotation from Deuteronomy 32:43 (lxx). [source]
2 Thessalonians 1:9 Glory of his power [δόξης τῆς ἰσχύος αὐτοῦ]
For glory see on 1 Thessalonians 2:12. Ἱσχὺς powernot often in Paul. It is indwelling power put forth or embodied, either aggressively or as an obstacle to resistance: physical power organized or working under individual direction. An army and a fortress are both ἰσχυρὸς. The power inhering in the magistrate, which is put forth in laws or judicial decisions, is ἰσχὺς , and makes the edicts ἰσχυρὰ validand hard to resist. Δύναμις is the indwelling power which comes to manifestation in ἰσχὺς The precise phrase used here does not appear elsewhere in N.T. In lxx, Isaiah 2:10, Isaiah 2:19, Isaiah 2:21. The power ( δύναμις ) and glory of God are associated in Matthew 24:30; Mark 13:26; Luke 21:27; Revelation 4:11; Revelation 19:1. Comp. κράτος τῆς δόξης αὐτοῦ strengthof his glory, Colossians 1:11. Additional Note on ὄλεθρον αἰώνιον eternaldestruction, 2 Thessalonians 1:9 Ἁιών transliterated eon is a period of time of longer or shorter duration, having a beginning and an end, and complete in itself. Aristotle ( περὶ οὐρανοῦ , i. 9,15) says: “The period which includes the whole time of each one's life is called the eon of each one.” Hence it often means the life of a man, as in Homer, where one's life ( αἰών ) is said to leave him or to consume away (Il. v. 685; Od. v. 160). It is not, however, limited to human life; it signifies any period in the course of events, as the period or age before Christ; the period of the millennium; the mytho-logical period before the beginnings of history. The word has not “a stationary and mechanical value” (De Quincey). It does not mean a period of a fixed length for all cases. There are as many eons as entities, the respective durations of which are fixed by the normal conditions of the several entities. There is one eon of a human life, another of the life of a nation, another of a crow's life, another of an oak's life. The length of the eon depends on the subject to which it is attached. It is sometimes translated world; world representing a period or a series of periods of time. See Matthew 12:32; Matthew 13:40, Matthew 13:49; Luke 1:70; 1 Corinthians 1:20; 1 Corinthians 2:6; Ephesians 1:21. Similarly οἱ αἰῶνες theworlds, the universe, the aggregate of the ages or periods, and their contents which are included in the duration of the world. 1 Corinthians 2:7; 1 Corinthians 10:11; Hebrews 1:2; Hebrews 9:26; Hebrews 11:3. -DIVIDER-
-DIVIDER-
The word always carries the notion of time, and not of eternity. It always means a period of time. Otherwise it would be impossible to account for the plural, or for such qualifying expressions as this age, or the age to come. It does not mean something endless or everlasting. To deduce that meaning from its relation to ἀεί is absurd; for, apart from the fact that the meaning of a word is not definitely fixed by its derivation, ἀεί does not signify endless duration. When the writer of the Pastoral Epistles quotes the saying that the Cretans are always ( ἀεί ) liars (Titus 1:12), he surely does not mean that the Cretans will go on lying to all eternity. See also Acts 7:51; 2 Corinthians 4:11; 2 Corinthians 6:10; Hebrews 3:10; 1 Peter 3:15. Ἁεί means habitually or continually within the limit of the subject's life. In our colloquial dialect everlastingly is used in the same way. “The boy is everlastingly tormenting me to buy him a drum.”-DIVIDER-
In the New Testament the history of the world is conceived as developed through a succession of eons. A series of such eons precedes the introduction of a new series inaugurated by the Christian dispensation, and the end of the world and the second coming of Christ are to mark the beginning of another series. See Ephesians 3:11. Paul contemplates eons before and after the Christian era. Ephesians 1:21; Ephesians 2:7; Ephesians 3:9, Ephesians 3:21; 1 Corinthians 10:11; comp. Hebrews 9:26. He includes the series of eons in one great eon, ὁ αἰὼν τῶν αἰώνων theeon of the eons (Ephesians 3:21); and the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews describes the throne of God as enduring unto the eon of the eons (Hebrews 1:8). The plural is also used, eons of the eons, signifying all the successive periods which make up the sum total of the ages collectively. Romans 16:27; Galatians 1:5; Philemon 4:20, etc. This plural phrase is applied by Paul to God only. -DIVIDER-
-DIVIDER-
The adjective αἰώνιος in like manner carries the idea of time. Neither the noun nor the adjective, in themselves, carry the sense of endless or everlasting. They may acquire that sense by their connotation, as, on the other hand, ἀΐ̀διος , which means everlasting, has its meaning limited to a given point of time in Judges 1:6. Ἁιώνιος means enduring through or pertaining to a period of time. Both the noun and the adjective are applied to limited periods. Thus the phrase εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα , habitually rendered forever, is often used of duration which is limited in the very nature of the case. See, for a few out of many instances, lxx, Exodus 21:6; Exodus 29:9; Exodus 32:13; Joshua 14:9; 1 Samuel 8:13; Leviticus 25:46; Deuteronomy 15:17; 1 Chronicles 28:4. See also Matthew 21:19; John 13:8; 1 Corinthians 8:13. The same is true of αἰώνιος . Out of 150 instances in lxx, four-fifths imply limited duration. For a few instances see Genesis 48:4; Numbers 10:8; Numbers 15:15; Proverbs 22:28; Jonah 2:6; Habakkuk 3:6; Isaiah 61:8. -DIVIDER-
-DIVIDER-
Words which are habitually applied to things temporal or material can not carry in themselves the sense of endlessness. Even when applied to God, we are not forced to render αἰώνιος everlastingOf course the life of God is endless; but the question is whether, in describing God as αἰώνιος , it was intended to describe the duration of his being, or whether some different and larger idea was not contemplated. That God lives longer than men, and lives on everlastingly, and has lived everlastingly, are, no doubt, great and significant facts; yet they are not the dominant or the most impressive facts in God's relations to time. God's eternity does not stand merely or chiefly for a scale of length. It is not primarily a mathematical but a moral fact. The relations of God to time include and imply far more than the bare fact of endless continuance. They carry with them the fact that God transcends time; works on different principles and on a vaster scale than the wisdom of time provides; oversteps the conditions and the motives of time; marshals the successive eons from a point outside of time, on lines which run out into his own measureless cycles, and for sublime moral ends which the creature of threescore and ten years cannot grasp and does not even suspect. -DIVIDER-
-DIVIDER-
There is a word for everlasting if that idea is demanded. That αἰώνιος occurs rarely in the New Testament and in lxx does not prove that its place was taken by αἰώνιος . It rather goes to show that less importance was attached to the bare idea of everlastingness than later theological thought has given it. Paul uses the word once, in Romans 1:20, where he speaks of “the everlasting power and divinity of God.” In Romans 16:26he speaks of the eternal God ( τοῦ αἰωνίου θεοῦ ); but that he does not mean the everlasting God is perfectly clear from the context. He has said that “the mystery” has been kept in silence in times eternal ( χρόνοις αἰωνίοις ), by which he does not mean everlasting times, but the successive eons which elapsed before Christ was proclaimed. God therefore is described as the God of the eons, the God who pervaded and controlled those periods before the incarnation. To the same effect is the title ὁ βασιλεὺς τῶν αἰώνων theKing of the eons, applied to God in 1 Timothy 1:17; Revelation 15:3; comp. 2Timothy href="/desk/?q=2ti+1:9&sr=1">2 Timothy 1:9; Titus 1:2), cannot mean before everlasting times. To say that God bestowed grace on men, or promised them eternal life before endless times, would be absurd. The meaning is of old, as Luke 1:70. The grace and the promise were given in time, but far back in the ages, before the times of reckoning the eons. -DIVIDER-
-DIVIDER-
Ζωὴ αἰώνιος eternallife, which occurs 42 times in N.T., but not in lxx, is not endless life, but life pertaining to a certain age or eon, or continuing during that eon. I repeat, life may be endless. The life in union with Christ is endless, but the fact is not expressed by αἰώνιος . Κόλασις αἰώνιος , rendered everlasting punishment (Matthew 25:46), is the punishment peculiar to an eon other than that in which Christ is speaking. In some cases ζωὴ αἰώνιος does not refer specifically to the life beyond time, but rather to the eon or dispensation of Messiah which succeeds the legal dispensation. See Matthew 19:16; John 5:39. John says that ζωὴ αἰώνιος is the present possession of those who believe on the Son of God, John 3:36; John 5:24; John 6:47, John 6:64. The Father's commandment is ζωὴ αἰώσιος , John 12:50; to know the only true God and Jesus Christ is ζωὴ αἰώνιος , John 17:3. -DIVIDER-
-DIVIDER-
Bishop Westcott very justly says, commenting upon the terms used by John to describe life under different aspects: “In considering these phrases it is necessary to premise that in spiritual things we must guard against all conclusions which rest upon the notions of succession and duration. 'Eternal life' is that which St. Paul speaks of as ἡ ὄντως ζωὴ thelife which is life indeed, and ἡ ζωὴ τοῦ θεοῦ thelife of God. It is not an endless duration of being in time, but being of which time is not a measure. We have indeed no powers to grasp the idea except through forms and images of sense. These must be used, but we must not transfer them as realities to another order.”-DIVIDER-
Thus, while αἰώνιος carries the idea of time, though not of endlessness, there belongs to it also, more or less, a sense of quality. Its character is ethical rather than mathematical. The deepest significance of the life beyond time lies, not in endlessness, but in the moral quality of the eon into which the life passes. It is comparatively unimportant whether or not the rich fool, when his soul was required of him (Luke 12:20), entered upon a state that was endless. The principal, the tremendous fact, as Christ unmistakably puts it, was that, in the new eon, the motives, the aims, the conditions, the successes and awards of time counted for nothing. In time, his barns and their contents were everything; the soul was nothing. In the new life the soul was first and everything, and the barns and storehouses nothing. The bliss of the sanctified does not consist primarily in its endlessness, but in the nobler moral conditions of the new eon, - the years of the holy and eternal God. Duration is a secondary idea. When it enters it enters as an accompaniment and outgrowth of moral conditions. -DIVIDER-
-DIVIDER-
In the present passage it is urged that ὄλεθρον destructionpoints to an unchangeable, irremediable, and endless condition. If this be true, if ὄλεθρος isextinction, then the passage teaches the annihilation of the wicked, in which case the adjective αἰώνιος is superfluous, since extinction is final, and excludes the idea of duration. But ὄλεθρος does not always mean destruction or extinction. Take the kindred verb ἀπόλλυμι todestroy, put an end to, or in the middle voice, to be lost, to perish. Peter says, “the world being deluged with water, perished ” ( ἀπολοῦνται 2 Peter 3:6); but the world did not become extinct, it was renewed. In Hebrews 1:11, Hebrews 1:12quoted from Isaiah href="/desk/?q=isa+51:6&sr=1">Isaiah 51:6, Isaiah 51:16; Isaiah 65:17; Isaiah 66:22; 2 Peter 3:13; Revelation 21:1. Similarly, “the Son of man came to save that which was lost ” ( ἀπολωλός ), Luke 19:10. Jesus charged his apostles to go to the lost ( ἀπολωλότα ) sheep of the house of Israel, Matthew 10:6, comp. Matthew 15:24. “He that shall lose ( ἀπολέσῃ ) his life for my sake shall find it,” Matthew 16:25. Comp. Luke 15:6, Luke 15:9, Luke 15:32. -DIVIDER-
-DIVIDER-
In this passage the word destruction is qualified. It is “destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his power, “ at his second coming, in the new eon. In other words, it is the severance, at a given point of time, of those who obey not the gospel from the presence and the glory of Christ. Ἁιώνιος may therefore describe this severance as continuing during the millennial eon between Christ's coming and the final judgment; as being for the wicked prolonged throughout that eon and characteristic of it, or it may describe the severance as characterizing or enduring through a period or eon succeeding the final judgment, the extent of which period is not defined. In neither case is αἰώνιος to be interpreted as everlasting or endless.sa180 [source]

Revelation 11:10 Make merry [ευπραινονται]
Present middle indicative of ευπραινω — euphrainō old verb (ευ πρην — euδωρα πεμπσουσιν αλληλοις — phrēn jolly mind), as in Luke 15:32; Revelation 12:12; Revelation 18:20. Jubilant jollification over the cessation of the activity of the two prophets. [source]
Revelation 11:10 Rejoice [χαιρουσιν]
Present active indicative of χαιρω — chairō them Locative (or dative) case with επι — epi as in Revelation 10:11.Make merry (ευπραινονται — euphrainontai). Present middle indicative of ευπραινω — euphrainō old verb (ευ πρην — euδωρα πεμπσουσιν αλληλοις — phrēn jolly mind), as in Luke 15:32; Revelation 12:12; Revelation 18:20. Jubilant jollification over the cessation of the activity of the two prophets.They shall send gifts to one another Future active of αλληλοις — pempō with dative εβασανισαν — allēlois Just as we see it done in Esther 9:19, Esther 9:22; Nehemiah 8:10, Nehemiah 8:12.Tormented (βασανιζω — ebasanisan). First aorist active indicative of οτι — basanizō for which see Revelation 9:5. This is the reason (hoti) of the fiendish glee of Jew and Gentile, who no longer will have to endure the prophecies (Revelation 11:3.) and dread miracles (Revelation 11:5.) of these two prophets. “Such a sense of relief is perhaps not seldom felt today by bad men when a preacher of righteousness or a signal example of goodness is removed” (Swete). [source]

What do the individual words in Luke 15:32 mean?

To make merry however and to rejoice it was fitting because the brother of you this dead was is alive again he was lost is found
εὐφρανθῆναι δὲ καὶ χαρῆναι ἔδει ὅτι ἀδελφός σου οὗτος νεκρὸς ἦν ἔζησεν ἀπολωλὼς εὑρέθη

εὐφρανθῆναι  To  make  merry 
Parse: Verb, Aorist Infinitive Passive
Root: εὐφραίνω  
Sense: to gladden, make joyful.
δὲ  however 
Parse: Conjunction
Root: δέ  
Sense: but, moreover, and, etc.
χαρῆναι  to  rejoice 
Parse: Verb, Aorist Infinitive Passive
Root: χαίρω  
Sense: to rejoice, be glad.
ἔδει  it  was  fitting 
Parse: Verb, Imperfect Indicative Active, 3rd Person Singular
Root: δεῖ  
Sense: it is necessary, there is need of, it behooves, is right and proper.
ὅτι  because 
Parse: Conjunction
Root: ὅτι  
Sense: that, because, since.
ἀδελφός  brother 
Parse: Noun, Nominative Masculine Singular
Root: ἀδελφός  
Sense: a brother, whether born of the same two parents or only of the same father or mother.
σου  of  you 
Parse: Personal / Possessive Pronoun, Genitive 2nd Person Singular
Root: σύ  
Sense: you.
οὗτος  this 
Parse: Demonstrative Pronoun, Nominative Masculine Singular
Root: οὗτος  
Sense: this.
νεκρὸς  dead 
Parse: Adjective, Nominative Masculine Singular
Root: νεκρός  
Sense: properly.
ἔζησεν  is  alive  again 
Parse: Verb, Aorist Indicative Active, 3rd Person Singular
Root: ζάω  
Sense: to live, breathe, be among the living (not lifeless, not dead).
ἀπολωλὼς  he  was  lost 
Parse: Verb, Perfect Participle Active, Nominative Masculine Singular
Root: ἀπόλλυμι  
Sense: to destroy.
εὑρέθη  is  found 
Parse: Verb, Aorist Indicative Passive, 3rd Person Singular
Root: εὑρίσκω  
Sense: to come upon, hit upon, to meet with.