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29But he answered his father, ‘Listen! For all these years I have been working like a slave for you, and I have never disobeyed your command; yet you have never given me even a young goat so that I might celebrate with my friends.

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28. Therefore his father went out. By these words he reproaches hypocrites with intolerable pride, which makes it necessary that the Father should entreat them not to envy the compassion manifested to their brethren. Now though God does not entreat, yet by his example he exhorts us to bear with the faults of our brethren. And in order to take away every excuse from wicked severity, he not only introduces hypocrites as speaking, whose false boasting might be confuted, but even affirms that, though any man had discharged, in the most perfect manner, all the duties of piety towards the Father, yet he has no just reason to complain because his brother obtains pardon. It is certain, indeed, that the sincere worshippers of God are always pure and free from this malignant disposition; but the design of Christ is, to show that it would be unjust in any man to murmur on account of his brother having been received into favor, even though he were not inferior in holiness to the angels.




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