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May 31, 2021 9:00 am
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Well hello everybody and welcome to live with long blonde and I'm so glad to have you all with us today. We're going to continue in our study of the Gospels, all one of the greatest chapters in all Bible in my opinion we begin today. But before we do that, let's pray and make sure our hearts are ready for that passage. Dear Lord Jesus, please forgive us for our sins and cleanse our hearts by the power of your Holy Spirit and fill our hearts with the Holy Spirit, that he might illuminate the word of God to our hearts and help us to apply it to our lives and draw from this passage. The hope that is there for all of us and so we commit our time in the word of God to you today. In Jesus name we pray. A man and a man now I said a moment ago that I believe we are beginning one of the greatest chapters in the whole Bible. And I want to reemphasize that Luke chapter 15 Luke chapter 15, all of us. I think probably know, one of the parables out of the three that Jesus tells in this chapter on the parable of the prodigal son but there's way more to this chapter than just that one parable in this chapter we see the heart of Almighty God for people outside of Christ displayed openly for every body to understand. We see the heart of God for our lost people display openly for everybody to see without apology without equivocation, without any kind of hedging in any way God makes it clear where D stands when it comes to his feelings about lost people. People don't know Jesus. What a wonderfully revealing chapter. Remember, the reason we read the Bible is to come to Christ. To understand the plan of salvation and then after that to get to know the living God in every passage to say how was this teach me about the character and the attributes and the attitudes of the living God of our of our universe and this is one of the greatest chapters in the Bible in terms of teaching us about the heart of God, the great passage in Psalm 103 that says that God showed his acts is his visa to the Israelites, but he showed his ways. The two Moses so we just don't want to know the acts of God as followers of Christ friends. We want to know the ways of God how God thinks how God sees the world how what makes God of why he does what he does when he does now. We may not be able to figure out everything but to the degree that we can. That's what we want to know the ways of God. In this chapter Bailey and I did the ways of God when it comes to lost people is never displayed in the whole Bible. I don't believe anymore dramatically than in this chapter, so you and John excited about this… I love this chapter, I just think it's pinnacle point an apex in the Gospels okay after Jesus has been rejected and maligned the and not after he they are trying to killing and in refusing to believe any of the Jewish people are led by their rabbis, who in their hypocrisy are trying to catching so that they can kill them catching and something he says after all that Jesus still reemphasizes in this chapter how he feels about those lost people and us. I hear you. Luke chapter 15 verse one and of course new King James for the first one then all the tax collectors and sinners. In this case, mostly prostitutes is is what we probably talking about drew near to him.
Jesus, to hear him and the Pharisees and the scribes murmured, saying, this man receives sinners and eats with them now wants to what's going on here and it is in the context of this chapter the context of this chapter is very important to interpreting this chapter correctly. Jesus everywhere he goes.
The lowest dregs of society in the minds of the rabbis are no to him. Tax collectors, prostitutes, other sinners in the minds of these self-righteous rabbis people that these rabbis would never rub shoulders with would never be willing to even be seen with in public and probably wouldn't get nearly private either, and they're flocking to Jesus and if you remember, there are several passages in the Gospels where the rabbis say if this man Jesus knew who this person was.
This was this woman was this man was a as a righteous man, he would have nothing to do with her nominal friends. Jesus knew exactly who these people were. He knew exactly what they had been doing in terms of their personal behavior and and and the reason they flocked to him is because he loved them and he he gave them a second chance and he offered them a way out of the life that they were living okay and so the scribes and the Pharisees and the rabbis they murmur against him and they say people leave the he's hanging out with these terrible people, and this is the context of the rest of the chapter. The complaining and the hardness of heart, and the complete lack of sympathy and the complete lack of pity for these folks who are lost they are lost spiritually and in the rabbis have no compassion on them at all. Now watch Jesus in response to this tells three stories and the word lost is used in this chapter 7 times counted or get a magic marker seven times what you think this chapter is about.
You think it's about people who lost seven times the words used.
Yes, I ready and Jesus spoke a parable to them, saying, verse four what manner you having 100 sheep if he loses, there is the first one.
One of them does not leave the 90 and nine in the wilderness and go after the one which is number two lost until he finds it when he is founded he lays on his shoulders, rejoicing, and when he comes home. He calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was third time lost. I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner bands and over 99 just persons who need no repentance. Now suffer second. What was the point in the spiritual member parable has 1.1 employee is that the shepherd love that lost sheep enough to go out there and find it. He wasn't content just to let it be lost. You say will you hear the end he says that the Angels don't people in heaven don't rejoice over persons who need no repentance. Folks that don't make this terrible walk on all fours. Of course, is nobody who doesn't need to repent and come to Christ is just trying to make a point about how much heaven rejoices when a seller of repenting comes to Christ.
Now look, and he tells another parable or what one having 10 pieces of silver. If she loses one before use of the word does not light a lamp, sweep the house and seek diligently until she finds it when she is founded she calls her friends and her neighbors together, saying, rejoice with me, for I have found the piece, which I had what lost number five. Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents all right this is stories to parable Jesus tells her to counter the attitude of these rabbis who find no joy whatsoever in the sinners coming to Christ they find no joy in seeing tax collectors and prostitutes turn their lives around and suddenly be saved out of this, not just horrible lifestyle but but out of their sinful condition and out of their destination. Going to hell rabbis on rejoicing at that no there there no excitement about that. Why because they think they're already so righteously that they don't understand they don't understand the deliverance that Christ offers to people who are lost to people who are down and in sin. And they know their incision and they will have a self-righteous bone in their body like these rabbis they know that there lost in man. When God grant you from something like that. Then anybody else he grabs from it. You rejoice because you know what it feels like hey I know what it feels like to be saved and dragged out of the deep mud of sin and depravity and debauchery and profanity, and when I hear about somebody coming to Christ to has been in that same life. I rejoice because I understand that these rabbis did not understand grace because they didn't think they needed grace say you know whatever I just throw this in, whenever Ali trips to Israel are well-meaning, one in October.
Lord willing, you should go with me a check our website out October 4 but anyway, we always do and towards the end of our time, and in Jerusalem. We always do a salvation message and a sinners prayer and I asked people raise their hand if they pray that prayer and you have enough guts to do that and then I tell this because all of them are from around always say this look if you're not from the McLean area. If you're from some other place United States. We are tons of people like you get home you go to your pastor and you tell that person that you were this crazy Jewish person lead you through Israel and preach the gospel to you and you pray the sinners prayer and you gave your life to Jesus, and you can already tell that the Holy Spirit is moved in, and that you are a new creature in Christ and you want to start growing out of their sinful ways and into a biblically obedient ways. You tell that to your pastor and if your pastor picks you up swings you around, says hello you praise the Lord that you enter a church and in your pastor looks at you like you have lost your cotton picking mind you get out of that church and you will find a pastor that rejoices with you. Hey why we rejoice with people who do that because those of us who have experienced grace understand grace and we rejoice every time. Grace is displayed in a person's life because they humble themselves and come to Christ praise the Lord. Praise the Lord. This is prevention brother is now was the point of both) when it was the shepherd who went to look financially on the woman who tore her house of looking for that coin. In both cases the shepherd and the woman cared about what was lost and they care deeply about what was lost and they desperately sought to find okay right this is on the rabbis did not do. But this is the heart of God and NetSuite were going to talk about the loss she not the lost coin, but the parable of the lost. Why someone the prodigal son, but it's really the parable of the lost son because that's what the fall is the same item was lost now is fun but will get to that passage next week. By the way, I should mention the most common imagery of the Lord Jesus Christ in paintings are down through the centuries has been that of the shepherd with the sheep over his shoulder. Let me show you a picture this if you look carefully, this image comes from the catacombs in Rome. This is from the dome. Attila catacombs of the Umatilla catacomb, which dates back to the second century A.D. the 100 A.D. they uncovered this image in the catacombs.
There so this is one of the earliest images of Christ in the world and look what's he doing he's Terry Nancy that lossy and and this is the legacy of the most numerically prevalent imagery in paintings and sculptures and frescoes of the Lord Jesus carrying that lamb over his shoulder. Now that's the end of our passage, but it's time for us to ask our most important question.
Are you ready to go, and let me just say before we do this, I got an email from somebody about last week's message and they said you said there will be eight things about a disciple of the you're going to talk to us about and you only get seven and and this person will be set.
I feel cheated.
I want to know what number eight was okay. He made it clear that he was kidding a little bit but yeah I noticed that there was an 81, but I left it out because of time in the area but but I was able to go back and change the that I say because this is not just ones and the eighth one was and I have written down here that to be a disciple is going to cost us doing what is ethical and not just what is legal okay I left that one out. Not doing just what is legal but doing what is right morally and ethically right. Do you know to do those things that are right in the sight of all men.
As Paul says in Romans 1270 okay so now I got it are unsorted and interrogative raises a lot it out, now well into the rephrase what you yeah and I'm so excited about this passage so you know what I have to say, say it with me, and I know you love this, how how soon we as absolutely now what does this passage have to do with us. Well friends before we talk about that list just remind ourselves that this imagery of being a lost sheep. In particular, is throughout the Bible the New Testament in particular Jesus use this terminology all the time. Look, if you would, let's look at a couple of passages look if you would at Luke chapter 19 Luke chapter 19 we have our good friend Zack PS who meet with Jesus who comes to faith in Christ who says a five if I cheated anybody I give them back four times what I talk. Look, Jesus says today salvation has come to this house because he's IKEA is also a son of Abraham watch her stand for the Son of Man, Jesus has come to seek and to say that which was lost. Was he talking about that event is obviously handout in Matthew's Gospel when he sends out the disciples in Matthew chapter 1020 says to the do not go to the Gentiles. He says in verse five or the Samaritans, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel that you understand I told you Israel on the Jewish people of the chosen people that are not chosen for automatic salvation result, every Jewish person you know and I know their loss if they don't know Christ sort Gentiles, but Jewish people are okay and Jesus sent his disciples to do his people look over chapter 13 of Matthew's gospel when Jesus went to visit the sire of Phoenician woman we've Artie talked about her.
Yes, Lord, even the dogs can eat the crumbs and fall off the table all woman great is your faith that will earlier. He said to her. She said my daughter is severely demon possessed. Help me look in verse 24 but he answered and said I was not sent except for the lost. See of the house of Israel was that passenger was a reason he ignores them to use that same terminology, the loss of the house of Israel.
Jewish people are lost without Christ. That's the whole argument of the first eight chapters of the book of Romans. Okay there is no distinction Romans chapter 3 for all sin.
Jews and Gentiles and fallen short of the glory of God and the only Christ okay and you know of the reason this imagery is used so often by the Lord is because this is she appeared around sheep and every year we go to Israel and go to Bethlehem.
We always are going and find her to see to, read the passage about the shepherds out in the field is still there. Sheep are the dumbest animals you ever saw in your life. I mean, they're just dumb animals and there also incredibly away word animals.
They are just in there. Then they usually machine for a minute and don't watch it and it runs wet now course by running away becomes easy prey for carnivores out there are directed to kill it needed, but sheep are incredibly wayward, so this image of lost sheep made perfect sense to these people at the time of Jesus and he uses in about the Jewish people as well as the Gentiles of the Gentiles are lost to a listen to Ephesians chapter 2 at that time before Jesus called you you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who were once far off crazy. Lost and been brought made nearby the blood of Christ right so Gentiles lossy Jewish people. Lossy Muslims lossy Mormons lossy Buddhist lossy confusions, lossy Scientology people lossy is lossy and what is the attitude here that the Lord displays to lossy in this chapter, very simple he cares about lossy and he goes after lost sheep. He just doesn't care about them and go G has terrible I'm so so I feel so bad for them.
No, no, no, the shepherd in this story, the parable he was proactive in our laws a fair about them lossy.
He went out there looking for the woman I was lost.
According she was proactive and not relaxed. She is considering well I got nine more coins. Well I got 99 more. She no the woman in the shepherd proactive and they went out with a passion to search for what they have lost friends.
This is the heart of God.
The heart of God is that he loves lost men and women and he searches for the and he goes to find them. He came to seek and to save doctors to save to seek and to save that which is lost and how does he seek lost people he seeks lost people by the power of the Holy Spirit reaching out to them, drawing them to Christ and convicting them of sin and of their need for Savior and of judgment that they can escape apart from what Christ did for them on the cross. This is not seeking people and you know not only does he seek them out with special revelation like that. The Bible and and the Holy Spirit, but he seeks them even in general revelation he made the stars the planets, the moon, the sun God human bodies, all of nature. Why, as a way of drawing people to him.
Romans chapter 1 says, and convincing them that there has to be a God a great creator God. Many gifts in the news about Christ, but you know he could remain the world with no sign, no stars, no moon very banal and and a place and and just not given us that testimony, but the heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament rings out his presence. The Bible tells us so well with this tells us my friend is that if you're a believer today in the Lord Jesus you know why your believer today is a here because I trusted Christ morning on no no you didn't do that first. Yes you did about first the living reason Christ came seeking you and through you to himself, maybe through you to himself through the prayers of a mother or father or grandmother or grandfather grew and grew you to himself through the preaching of some solid biblical pastor when you were growing up or some solid Sunday school teacher when you were growing up through you to himself by some friend knew you are girlfriend or boyfriend who share the Lord with you through you to himself by the supernatural working of the Holy Spirit in your heart to convict you of sin and righteousness and judgment and your need for Christ and then they trusted Christ and that's why you're saved today but you didn't.
You remember what Jesus said, no man can come to me unless the father draw him in John's Gospel, so that's why your believer today. Hey, I'm a believer today, because God came looking for me. I go looking for him. Dr. Brown bought a car to stand on the street of Chapel Hill, Franklin Street, he sent out a card to look for me. Are you looking for Bob Eckardt friends God came to see Jesus do and to see that which is lost now by that so important because a lot of the snow people. I think all of us were Christians know people who were still lost many of these people are close to us and we really care about them very deeply, a mother or father or brother or sister a child or grandchild, spouse, neighbor or someone work on extended relative and we love these people but there lost they they haven't come to Christ if you're not careful. Listen to me listen carefully to me looked like me okay if we're not careful. It's very easy for us to begin feeling like we're in this alone trying to reach them. You know, we pray and show the Lord with them and we pray we try to speak to them and nothing happens from weeks or months, years, and we begin to feel like were praying that the heavens are brass. Have you ever heard that expression like prayers and was bouncing off the brass and coming right back. We begin to feel like there is not a God who is all that interested in it in our people we love. We begin to feel like like were trying to push a dead horse uphill within the regarding their salvation and were trying to talk God into being interested and into being proactive and into intervening in these people's lives to bring them to Christ that were trying to convince God. He needs to do this and that God is not listening to us.
Easy for the enemy to whisper that in your ear or my ear and we begin to impugn God and be upset with God because he said he is not doing anything friend look at me, look here. Nothing could be farther from the truth. That is a lie from hell that you are God that your Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit are not interested in the salvation of these people you love, that is a lot. It of him. Jesus key came to seek and to save that which is lost in the people your case you care about. He is seeking them. He is drawing trying to draw them in.
If he wants to save them for it is the will of God. First Timothy chapter 2 that no one cares but that all come to faith in Christ.
This is the will of God because this is the heart of God. Like the shepherd and the woman, and so folks, you're not praying to address God you not praying to a disinterested God, you're not praying to a God moves in neutral about your loved ones.
He's not. He's more proactive about bringing them Christ in you are he loves you more than you do, and he's doing everything he can justly and righteously do to bring them to himself in response to your prayers and and you can't believe, or you will falsely malign our great God. However, there is a point beyond which God cannot go, his holiness will not allow him to go past that point is justice. These attributes appears will not allow him to go past that point is righteousness will not allow him to go past that point because their sinners in the last day in their own free will choose to trust with Christ. Ross he can't save them, because it would violate his holiness, his justice, his righteousness, so you we have to understand that if they don't come to Christ.
It is not God's fault is not because God was set in the neutral corner and did nothing.
No, I did everything he could do except make them believe God will not make people believe it has to be their free will. We understand each other, you know, my mom and I you know had a terrible relationship proto-I hated her and she eventually came to Christ, you know the story, but my dad was precious to me. He never spent much time with me.
He was always working to try to keep up with the spending habits of my mother barely ever.
I barely ever spent much time alone with him, but he was precious to me.
I love my he was a completely different personality. He was gentle and sweet kind. Everybody loved and that in calling Irving Benjamin Solomon called in. But everybody called Buddy, but you know when I came to Christ, I began praying for my dad. I prayed. I wanted him to come to Christ so badly.
I knew he didn't have much time to live, because he already had a couple of heart attacks and back then it was nothing anybody could do except the doctor would dispatch him back send you home. Tell your change of diet start stop smoking and operate year after year after year for my and there was no movement at all. I mean I would try to share the Lord with him he would get up and walk out of the room we encounter conversation I've tried to take him to the gospel with conversation.
He was out on and I got discouraged and I accused God of not being interested Monday and in the many angry at God falsely angry was true.
And finally, one older Christian gentleman when I was talking about this said to me, long got it all wrong. You need only read Luke 15 you'll see the heart of God for your data but you have to pray God do all that you can justly and righteously do to save my father and bring Christ Lord if he doesn't come to Christ.
I will not blame you a promise.
I won't be angry with you and Lord it will affect our relationship because I understand is only so much.
Your nature allows you to do. My dad's got to come, Lord, please.
Drawing with everything you got and that became my prayer. My dad came to Christ the week before he died was the miraculous story. I don't have time to tell you but under the ceiling have, but if he had not come Christ like my grandparents.
I don't think you I do not blame God.
I make the assumption that God did everything he could justly and righteously do to draw my grandparents to him, including having me share the gospel with them six times and they would not. Jesus said how many times Jerusalem I wanted to gather you under my wings like a hen gathers her chicks and you would know you were not willing and on and on.
I'm okay with that. Some of us have been holding it against God. For four years that somebody didn't come to Christ.
We were praying for and asking for friends you've misunderstood the heart of God. He sought your friend and your loved one and pulled them with everything he could pull them with up to two point where he would've had to sacrifice his holiness and his righteousness to do more and he couldn't do that in the final decision was made by her friend your loved one, not by God. I hope this will release some of us who been angry and upset with God for a long time and now when you pray for people who are lost. Remember God do all that you can justly and righteously to to crawl my whoever to you and to Christ.
But if they do not come. I will not hold it against you. Okay, that's our wonderful passage for today. Let's pray with her hands down in our eyes closed. Many of us here have been angry God disappointed with God hurt that God did not bring our loved one or friend to Christ, and we did impugn him and we blamed him for something is not his fault. We need to release that today my friends that you and understand that he came to seek your friend, and he did seek your friend. As far as he could see your friend without violating his character to come (or Jesus thinking that the Bible says you came to seek and to save those who are lost. That's why we're in Christ today.
Those of us who are more Jesus remind us to seek our friends and everyone we care about, to the nth degree right up to the point where you would violate your holiness in your character to go any farther I was believe that and not hold you responsible for things that are not your fault.
Lord, some of us here need to be liberated after years of bad feelings toward you do that today we pray in Jesus name. Everybody said a man all right hey last phrase in rather than as an next week to finish out this chapter with the parable of the lost son and the heart of the father of Exxon for him. Okay, the leisure we love you. Thanks for being with us. Check out my children. I love to take you and the have a great week