By Not Known
When was the last time you lost something valuable? Did you give up searching or were you persistently looking for it until it was found? How happy and relieved you were when you finally found it.
Likewise, when it comes to people, God does not give up, for he loves his children with an unceasing, never-give up, relentless love. He just keeps on searching and seeking out those who have turned away from him.
It doesn’t come much clearer than the three parables in Luke 15.
We need to be reminded what parables are: parables are stories that reveal big truths about what God is like. They expose the true condition of our hearts.
Luke 15 shows us Jesus’ response to the Pharisees who were upset with him for being with sinners and tax collectors. But as these parables reveal, these ‘sinful’ people were those whom Jesus came for.
As you read each parable, do you also see how God is represented?
God who is represented by the shepherd goes out of his way, walking through open fields and winding paths to find that one lost sheep. Having found that sheep, then carried it on his shoulders back to the sheepfold.
God who is represented by the woman was committed to checking through the house in the hope of finding that one coin which she had lost.
God who is represented by the father, who despite being dishonoured by his lost son, had compassion for him and welcomed him back with open arms.
In the description of the shepherd, woman and father, we get an amazing picture of God. That He goes the extra mile to find us; He is committed to comb every inch in order to recover us; and when we return to him, he comes to us, and warmly embraces us with love, grace and affection.
These parables also reveal our condition; we are the lost sheep that are unable to find our way back, and only when the shepherd comes searching for us, then we can be found. We are the lost coin forever stuck in the corner of the room, and only when the searcher reaches down to pick us up, then we can be found. And we are the lost son reeking with dirt and sweat, only when we are embraced by the father’s love, grace and acceptance, then we can experience forgiveness.
The common point between the sheep, the coin, the son and us is: we are helpless to save themselves. But as Jesus illustrated through these parables, we have a God who saves because he is the Good Shepherd, a committed owner and a loving father.
Let us then approach God with gratitude and utmost honour for He is mighty to save.
Pr Amos Lau