28 “The older brother was angry and wouldn’t go in. His father came out and begged him, 29 but he replied, ‘All these years I’ve slaved for you and never once refused to do a single thing you told me to. And in all that time you never gave me even one young goat for a feast with my friends. 30 Yet when this son of yours comes back after squandering your money on prostitutes, you celebrate by killing the fattened calf!’
31 “His father said to him, ‘Look, dear son, you have always stayed by me, and everything I have is yours. 32 We had to celebrate this happy day. For your brother was dead and has come back to life! He was lost, but now he is found!’” (Luke 15:25-32 NLT)
It is so easy to read the first part of this story Jesus told and think about the runaway son who returned home. The father threw a part to celebrate his lost son's return home. That is a very important message.
But don't miss the rest of the story. The older brother refuses to celebrate his younger brother's return home. He is jealous and resentful. His focus is on himself without concern for his father or brother.
Jesus told this series of Lost and Found stories recorded in Luke 15 in response to the complaints of the Pharisees that Jesus ate and associated with "sinful people." They were judgmental and self righteous. If Jesus welcomes the lost and the outcasts, we should too.