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Luke 15: 1-32

Wednesday, 28 December 2022

Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” -Luke 15:10

The three parables that Jesus speaks of in Luke 15, were in the context of the murmuring of the Pharisees (v.2); now lets look to two, for our meditation today. Through them, Jesus wanted to highlight the real purpose of His mission on earth and the rejoicing moment of heaven. Jesus Himself said: “I am telling you what I have seen in the Father's presence…” (John 8:38)

“The joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents” mentioned after each of the 2 parables highlights the value of repentance (Vs.7 &10). Both parables tell us about the great redemption of mankind. Jesus draws our attention to the value of a perishing soul as we go through the parallels in the parables of the ‘Lost sheep’ and the ‘Lost Coin:-

(1) The Lost: The lost sheep was part of the 100; likewise the lost one coin was part of the 10. How it was lost we don’t know; it had been part of the group and when lost it is harder to find. The Lost Sheep was exposed to the enemy, helpless, defenseless, wandering and didn’t know how to reach back! We too were walking according to our own wishes: All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned—every one—to his own way…” (Isaiah 53:6) but in His mercy For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16).

(2) The Value: In both parables we see that 99 sheep and 9 coins are available for the owner. Compared to the lost one, the ones in hand have more worth. But in the Lost Sheep parable, its written the good shepherd left the 99 in the wilderness and went in search of the lost; likewise the woman! The value of each soul in the eyes of our Creator and our Father is more than anything in this world! “In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him…” (1John 4:9).

(3) A Searching: In both parables, there is no mention of a fixed time for searching but they were persistent, diligently searching for the Lost one until it was found! The relation/affection towards the lost one is clearly drawn here. In the Lost Sheep parable, the shepherd can find it by hearing the cries of the sheep but in the Lost coin parable, she lights the candle and sweeps the house and searches diligently till she finds it! The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. (2Pet.3:9)

(4) Love & Joy: Once the lost was found, how much joy is expressed! The Shepherd carries the lost on his shoulder and brings it back home. Of course, it was with love they searched and found the lost and all they received is great joy! But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. (Rom.5:8)

(5) Rejoicing & Fellowship: The joy on the earth is described here as rejoicing and calling the neighbors to partake in a fellowship. And the joy in heaven is also emphasized in both parables.

Heaven rejoices on each sinner’s repentance. God commands all to repent— a condition to receive His forgiveness and grace (Luke 13:3,5; Acts 3:19). Our Lord Jesus assigned each of us His children with a responsibility— to reach out to the lost one and help them return home. When we do our part with the help of the Holy Spirit, many will find their Saviour and of course Heaven will rejoice!

To Remember: For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? (Mark.8:36)

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