In Luke 19:10, we have just witnessed the radical conversion of a “wee little man” named Zacchaeus. Jesus, in this verse, describes His mission: “For the Son of Man is come to seek and to save that which is lost.” “Seeking” denotes craving and striving after. “Save” can refer to physical rescue; however, the context is clear that Jesus is referring to spiritual salvation. This point is clearly illustrated in Luke 15. This chapter contains three parables of the truth of seeking and saving.
The entire chapter begins because the Pharisees are complaining. As we discussed some weeks ago, the biblical truth is that Christ receives sinners. The question is: will sinners receive Christ? His arms of forgiveness are open to all, because He died for all. All this murmuring from the religious elite is what sparks the telling of these three parables. By the way, I have come to learn, that Jesus makes religious people very uncomfortable; however, Jesus makes sinners very comfortable.
We see first, in verses three through seven, the seeking shepherd. He had only lost one out of one hundred. Most of us would consider that exceptional. Nevertheless, the shepherd is not satisfied. He goes after the wayward sheep. He searches with diligence. He does not give up. He searches until he finds it. This results in triumphant rejoicing! He makes a celebration; likewise, Jesus says “joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.”
Secondly, we see the frantic bride. The coin that this woman lost was similar to a wedding band today. It was one of ten coins that adorned a garland. These coins did not just have monetary value, but also nostalgic interest. Jesus says that she lights a candle, sweeps, and seeks diligently. She does not give up, for like the seeking shepherd, she searches until she finds it. She, also, calls a massive celebration. Jesus says, “There is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.”
We will deal with the prodigal son next time. Let us resolve to see the application of this text. Fellow Christian, either we are seeking and saving the lost, or we are sulking as we savor our own salvation. Evangelism must be intentional. It will never happen by accident. Evangelism must be diligent. It must take one an unfailing mindset. Evangelism cannot grow tired or weary. Evangelism should celebrational. Fruit will come faithful evangelism. How do I know that? “He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall DOUBTLESS come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him” (Psalm 126:6, emphasis mine).
Dear sinner, for whom Christ died, He will receive you. Are you one of ninety nine? Are you one of ten? You are precious to Him. His Holy Spirit is drawing you to Him even now. A faithful Christian is praying for you right now. They are seeking you with a lighted candle, sweeping even nook and cranny to bring you back to your Savior. A celebration is coming. If you reject the love and sacrifice of Jesus, you have no hope. “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). Saint, bring all to Jesus! Sinner, come to Jesus!