“Or what woman, if she has ten silver coins and loses one coin, does not light a lamp and sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? When she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin which I had lost!’ In the same way, I tell you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
– Luke 15:8-10 NASB (Jesus speaking)
Today we continue in Luke 15 where we left off yesterday. Jesus has just told a parable and now He tells another – this one shorter, but making essentially the same point.
The point of the parables is that God has lost something and is happy when He gets it back. The book of Genesis tells us that we are made in the image of God, so we should not be surprised when we find out that God reacts to many situations the same way that we do. When we lose something, finding it brings happiness.
In the previous parable, it was a shepherd in search of a lost sheep. In this parable, it’s a woman in search of a lost coin. Both are situations to which we can easily relate.
In both parables, Jesus is emphasizing that it’s human beings who need to change – not God. Again, the book of Genesis tells us how the first humans went astray. It was not God who went astray. He doesn’t change. It was Adam and Eve who trusted the evil one instead of trusting the One who had created them. Thus they sinned. And all their descendants since that time – you and I included – have sinned. Therefore, we need to change…and that’s what the word “repent” means: to change.
In a previous daily devotional we meditated on something Jesus said earlier in the Gospel of Luke:
“I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.”
– Luke 5:32 NASB
The Pharisees and scribes thought they needed no repentance. If they had compared themselves to God, they would have seen that they were sinners and needed to repent. Instead, they compared themselves to other people. They should have known that’s a poor standard of judgment.
(Remember that prayer is more about listening than talking. Use the words below to start yourself, but then allow time to reflect more on the Scripture above before you say the “Amen.” During that time of quiet reflection, let God shape your thoughts and wait for a sense of peace to come. That’s your signal to say “Amen” and go forth to the day.)
Lord, we know that one of the reasons You lived a human life was to give us a standard by which we can measure ourselves. Let me measure myself against You right now…(this is where you remain quiet in order to let Him work in your thoughts)… Amen.