The Lesson Of Parable Of The Lost Sheep
KEY SCRIPTURES: Matthew 18:10-14, Luke 15:1-7
Luke 15:7 “I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repents, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.”
The parable of the lost sheep which was told by Jesus on two occasions. The first occasion was when he used it to answer his disciples’ question concerning who was the greatest in the kingdom of heaven by making them understand the fact that God is not bothered about who was the greatest but more concerned about how to prevent anyone from losing the kingdom of heaven. The second occasion was when the Pharisees made mention that Jesus spend so much time with sinners instead of them who are more important, and Jesus told them the parable of the lost sheep to help the Pharisees understand that God loves every sinner and will go in search for them always to redeem them back to God.
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Just like a Shepherd which was used in the parable cares for each sheep, keep them from harm, spend great time with his flocks and know them by their names even when one went missing, he left the remaining 99, went to look for the lost sheep, and even came home rejoicing after finding the lost sheep so also is the kind of care that God has for mankind. He doesn’t want us to go astray, he knows us by our names, and even when mankind went astray, he sent His son, Jesus Christ to bring us back to his kingdom as the good shepherd. God wants everyone to follow Him and there is joy in heaven when a sinner comes back to God with a repentant heart. Everyone is important to God, even children. There are lessons Jesus pointed at while teaching the parable of the lost sheep and this article will mention a few of the lessons of the parable of the lost sheep.
- GOD CARES FOR US
From the parable of the lost sheep, the shepherd represents God. In the parable, the shepherd cares for the sheep and even went ahead to pursue the lost sheep. The shepherd didn’t wait for the sheep to come wandering to the fold or to hear his call but he rather searched for the sheep. The lesson here is that God actively pursues us, calling us to himself even when we are far away from God or completely unaware of his presence.
2. GOD’S WAYS DIFFERS FROM MAN’S
In the story, the shepherd temporarily left the ninety-nine sheep to pursue the lost one. As Christians, when we are following God, we should not think of what to gain or what we are losing which is operating in the realm of the world but be willing to lose it all for God’s sake. We should humble ourselves before God and be willing to serve diligently in the sanctuary of God. We should get involved more in soul-winning activities to proclaim the gift of God which was given willingly to mankind.
3. JESUS IS OUR BURDEN BEARER
From the story, after the sheep was found, the shepherd carried it on his shoulder and kept it back to the flock despite all. This shows to us as children of God that Jesus is our burden bearer, in times of weariness in the journey of life, we can trust in Jesus to help us carry our burdens. Don’t allow the pressures or challenges of this world to overwhelm you, rather tell it to Jesus Christ and he will send help and bring comfort to your soul.
4. SOUL-WINNING IS THE DUTY OF ALL
When the shepherd returned with the lost sheep, he called his friend and they came rejoicing over the found sheep which represents how God feels about those who come back to him. As children of God, we are all expected to get involved in soul-winning. It is not to be left for a few set of people in God’s vineyard, we must all be involved as each redeemed soul elicited a celebration in heaven as a result of this. We are all encouraged to put on a joyful heart of celebration once a gospel is preached and accepted during soul-winning outreaches.
5. RELIGIOUS PRIDE CAUSES SPIRITUAL BLINDNESS
The Pharisees and teachers of the law were so preoccupied in judging others and this made them miss the message contained within the parable. Their religious pride and self-righteousness hindered them from acknowledging the fact that Jesus Christ is the Messiah. Their pride caused spiritual blindness and they couldn’t humble themselves to accept Jesus Christ but rather continue in their hypocritical living. Their pride made Jesus respond to them in this scene which illustrated how God responded to the prideful and the humble. Pride comes before destruction and as a child of God, we shouldn’t allow pride to make us miss the opportunities God has for us. We should be humble no matter the level God has taken us to. As servants of God, we must not be quick to condemn others who have lost their way. We need to realize how God has redeemed us from sins and if not for the love of God, we could still be the lost sheep in Christ’s parable.
The parable of the lost sheep brings a lesson of hope, redemption and abundance of wisdom which can be applied today. We are implored to share the love of Christ to those who need to hear it most. We have to open our hearts and homes to make room and time for Christ to use us to reach the lost. Jesus Christ is willing to be committed to us so we should be thankful for each day of our lives. There is hope for the lost, we may lose our way, but God will not give up on us. He will do everything within His power to bring us back. God will not force us to be part of His kingdom, it is a decision we need to make. Let us not abuse God’s patience and love because he will bring every good and evil thing that we did into judgment. Remember, God couples mercy with justice.