RESCUING THE LOST
Jesus said, “The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give Himself as a ransom for many.” Matt. 20:28
The religious leaders among the Jews had a problem with the way Jesus did the Lord’s work. They did not agree with the way He welcomed people. Luke 15 records the complaint levied against Jesus
for interacting with folks who were labeled as “sinners”.
Jesus told three stories in response to their accusation against him. All three parables share a common message. By telling three stories to them, Jesus was making His point ever so clear. What
His accusers could not see was Jesus rescuing the lost. So He told them the parables of the lost sheep, lost coin and lost son. In each story the lost is found. The shepherd rescues the sheep that had gone astray from the flock. The woman finds the lost coin that had been misplaced and the lost son is rescued by his memory of a loving father. The great and wonderful message Jesus shared with the
critical religious leaders was that heaven rejoices when the lost is found. Hear the Lord’s words, “I tell you there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent….there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” Luke 15:7
Sinners are lost and in need of being found. Jesus was reaching out to those who were lost in sin and needed to return to God’s house.
I remember the day I stepped forward during the singing of the invitation song. I was about to confess that I believed that Jesus is Lord, the Son of God and my Savior. One of the most impressive memories I have in obeying the Gospel was thinking about the angels rejoicing in heaven. What I had done in confessing my faith and pledging my life to Jesus in that small church house was something that brought expressions of joy in heaven itself and in the very presence of God.
I have been privileged to preach the Gospel of Jesus to many for years. In those years I have assisted a number of individuals who have brought their sinful lives to Jesus and in faith, repentance, confession and baptism they have surrendered their guilty souls to Jesus for the cleansing from His blood. Each time there is this precious thought that what we have done in the waters of baptism breaks out into a great celebration among the heavenly hosts.
I have been lost before. I was lost from my parents one day. In a short time I was found. I was lost in sin, but Jesus found me through my hearing the Gospel. Being lost from God is a hopeless feeling. Jesus reached out to sinners to give them hope in a new life. He called them to be righteous. He is calling you.
Max Pratt, firstname.lastname@example.org
P.S. Heaven will rejoice in your salvation. Blessings in abundance will fall into your life. Do you need to be saved?