God’s Renewing Word of Love
Luke 15:1-10: In today’s reading, Jesus tells two parables, using images of a lost sheep and a lost coin, to teach about how God cares for those who are lost.
The Lost Sheep
1 One day when many tax collectors and other outcasts came to listen to Jesus, 2the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law started grumbling, “This man welcomes outcasts and even eats with them!” 3So Jesus told them this parable:
4“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them—what do you do? You leave the other ninety-nine sheep in the pasture and go looking for the one that got lost until you find it. 5When you find it, you are so happy that you put it on your shoulders 6and carry it back home. Then you call your friends and neighbors together and say to them, ‘I am so happy I found my lost sheep. Let us celebrate!’ 7In the same way, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine respectable people who do not need to repent.
The Lost Coin
8“Or suppose a woman who has ten silver coins loses one of them—what does she do? She lights a lamp, sweeps her house, and looks carefully everywhere until she finds it. 9When she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together, and says to them, ‘I am so happy I found the coin I lost. Let us celebrate!’ 10In the same way, I tell you, the angels of God rejoice over one sinner who repents.”
Today’s Key Verse: Luke 15:10
[Jesus said:] “In the same way, I tell you, the angels of God rejoice over one sinner who repents.”
In Luke’s Gospel and in Jesus’s day, the “lost” are sinners and tax collectors who were considered to be outcasts by some in the Jewish community. In verses 1-3, who are the ones listening to Jesus? Who are the ones grumbling and why? How do you suppose the listeners understood these parables? What do these two parables teach you about God’s love?
Lord Jesus, teach me to follow you and share your love with those who are lost and lonely. I offer you my humble and repentant heart. With the angels in heaven, I rejoice because of your steadfast love for me. Amen.
Luke 15:11-32: Jesus tells a story about a lost son.