Baggage – Part 1: Forgiveness

Baggage – Part 1: Forgiveness

Luke 15:11-32

“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.” Psalm 139:23-24 (p.476)

Series Memory Verse: “I will walk in freedom, for I have devoted myself to your commandments.” Psalm 119:45 (p.469)

  • Forgiveness Sets Me Free.  

“I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.”  Romans 15:13 (p.868)

  1. Recognize my baggage. (Hurts, Habits, and Hangups)

“When he finally came to his senses, he said to himself, ‘At home even the hired servants have food enough to spare, and here I am dying of hunger!” Luke 15:17 (p.798)

“Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.” Ephesians 4:31–32 (p.897)

  1. Decide to let it go.

“I will go home to my father and say, “Father, I have sinned against both heaven and you, and I am no longer worthy of being called your son. Please take me on as a hired servant.” Luke 15:18–19 (p.798)

“But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.” 1 John 1:9 (p.941)

  1.  Embrace grace.

“So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him.” Luke 15:20 (p.798)

”Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.” Ephesians 4:23–24 (p.897)

My Next Step This Week:

_____ Reflect on a situation where you need to forgive. Prayerfully let it go. Embrace God’s grace and begin moving forward.


One Thing: Forgiveness Sets me free.

Key Verse: “I will walk in freedom, for I have devoted myself to your commandments.” Psalm 119:45
Bible References: The Prodigal Son Luke 15:11-32


// We are imperfect humans and because of that, we all have some kind of baggage in our life. What are some common types of baggage that weigh us down and what might cause them?


Forgiveness Sets Me Free

How you can live that out:

  1. Recognize my baggage. (Hurts, Habits, and Hangups) 
  2. Decide to let it go. 
  3. Embrace grace. 

// Was there anything that stood out to you, challenged you, or maybe even confused you?


// Read Luke 15:17 (p.798).

  • What caused the son to get to this point?
  • What do you need to do to recognize the baggage you’re carrying around?

// Read Matthew 6:14-15 (p.737).

  • What is the potential cost of living with the baggage of unforgiveness?
  • What stops you from forgiving others?

// Read Luke 15:25-32 (p.798).

  • Does the older brother’s anger seem justified? Why or why not?
  • In what way does the brother’s attitude become baggage? When have you experienced this?

// Read Ephesians 4:31-32 (p.897).

  • We see the brother is full of bitterness, anger, and harsh words. How have these affected you? 
  • What do you need to do to extend grace to those in your life that have hurt you?

// Read Luke 15:22-24 (p.897).

  • What did the Prodigal Son have to do to deserve the father’s forgiveness?
  • Compare the father to God the Father and how He patiently waits for us. 


The parable of the Prodigal Son is one of the most famous teachings of Jesus. In this teaching Jesus highlights how incredible the father’s love for his two sons really is. In the beginning of the passage, we see that the younger son asks for his “share” of the inheritance. This was essentially saying, “Dad, I wish you were dead. You mean nothing more to me than what I get when you die.” The remarkable thing about this was that the father divided up his land, the original language says, “he divided up his very life and gave it to his son,” and gave his son the freedom to do with his land (life) what he wanted. Selling land was unusual during Jesus’ time and seen as the ultimate sign of disrespect.


_____ Reflect on a situation where you need to forgive. Prayerfully let it go. Embrace God’s grace and begin moving forward. 


Read Colossians 3:13. Forgiveness has been given to us by God, and we are supposed to offer forgiveness to others just as it has been given to us by God. This is a difficult thing to do, but we must take on the heart of Jesus and value relationship enough to forgive. How does forgiving others free you from your baggage of unforgiveness?

1 John 1:9 (p. 941), Acts 3:19 (p. 832), Mark 11:25 (p. 772), Psalm 103:12 (p.460)

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