Central Christian Church Lampasas
Parables: Lost Sheep
Pastor Nathan explores Parables Jesus told in Matthew and Luke.
Locations & Times
  • Central Christian Church
    204 S Broad St, Lampasas, TX 76550, USA
    Sunday 10:30 AM
Annoucements for July 10th
July 16th: Men's Breakfast at Country Kitchen 8:00 AM

July 17th: Board Meeting

July 20th: Women's Wednesday

August: Gospel Night More details coming

What are the greatest chapters in the Bible?
Psalms 23, Romans 8 and John 3 would all be at the top of the list. Luke chapter 15 would also be in the list. It contains three parables about things that were lost and then found. The first parable is about a lost sheep and the shepherd who goes out to rescue it. The second parable is about a lost coin and the woman who searched frantically for it. The third story is called the Prodigal Son and is the most familiar of the three. It’s about a son who becomes lost to his father. The theme connecting these three parables is when that which is lost is found, there is great rejoicing.
The irony of that statement is incredible. The Pharisees didn’t notice we are all sinners. There were two different groups present in Jesus’ audience. The Pharisees and teachers of the law had become the enemies of Jesus by this time. They followed him around looking for a reason to condemn Him. These religious fanatics were so scrupulous in their observance of the law; they would never sit down and eat with “sinners” like tax collectors and common men. Jesus didn’t share their scruples, so He was always hanging out with the outcasts and rejected people. The words of Jesus made the religious crowd so angry, they were going to eventually crucify Him in the name of their religion. The Bible says the common people heard Jesus gladly–they rejoiced in His words. We need to be on guard constantly so we don’t become so self-righteous that we begin to exclude people who aren’t just like us.
What is it that makes heaven happy? In all three of these parables, Jesus reports there is great rejoicing in heaven when one person turns from their sins and puts their faith in Jesus Christ. The world may be impressed when we build a huge building, but I don’t believe heaven celebrates too much when a building is built. The world may be impressed with our multitude of programs and ministries, but Jesus never said there was joy in the presence of angels over people gathering for Bible Study. He did say, not once, not twice, but three times there is great joy in heaven when one person turns to God and receives His forgiveness.

In all three of these parables, there was something lost that was found. In the first parable, a little lamb is lost and the Shepherd leaves the others to go out and find the individual lamb. It’s obvious we are like the lost lamb and Jesus is the Shepherd. We are one who is lost.

The saddest experience of life is to be lost. In the parable, God is the Shepherd, and the lost lamb represents us.
Sheep are dumb, defenseless, and directionless. Almost all animals have either claws, sharp teeth, quills, a hard shell, or speed to escape predators–but not a lamb–they have no defenses. Sheep get lost easily, too. There are homing pigeons, and cats and dogs can often find their way back home, but sheep are clueless about how to find their own way back home. In many respects, we are the same way in our ability to rescue ourselves from our lost condition. We are dumb, defenseless, and direction

How many of you have ever been in a strange building or city and gotten lost? It can be a distressing experience, but you were only lost temporarily, because you are here today. In this passage Jesus uses the word “lost” to speak of the spiritual condition of being eternally lost. Lost is one of the scariest four lettered words in the human language.

You can lose your mind, and it’s not as tragic as a lost soul. You can lose your character, and it’s not as bad as a losing your soul. Death will heal the loss of a fortune, or a loss of health or a loss of a mind–but a lost soul is for eternity. We are all like a lost lamb at one time in our lives. Jesus can never find you until you admit you are a lost sinner. That’s the bad news, without Christ we are lost.

The good news is that Jesus searches for us in order to save us. The shepherd had 100 sheep. Just before he was ready to bed them down, he began to count them, “...95, 96, 97, 98, 99...Whoa, I’m missing one! Hey, where’s Snowflake? I haven’t seen her all afternoon.” Then the Shepherd does something surprising, he leaves the other 99 sheep and sets off to find the single lost lamb. Remember, that’s what God is like.

God is more concerned with the individual than with the group. God deals with us as individuals–not as groups. He cannot save this crowd, but He will save every individual in this crowd who will accept His love and forgiveness. You don’t get saved by hanging around other saved people–that’s called salvation by association–it doesn’t work that way. You have to have a personal encounter with the Shepherd yourself.

If the shepherd had 10,000 sheep and one was lost, I believe he would have left the 9,999 and gone after the one. Why? Because it is the character of our God to love the individual and to seek the lost. If you were the only person on earth who was lost and needed a Savior, I think Jesus would have still come to earth and died on a cross for your sins. That’s why Jesus came to earth.
It is the nature of God to seek the lost. In the other religions of the world, man is seeking and searching for God, but in the Christian faith it is the God of the Universe who comes seeking and searching for you.

Notice what happened when the shepherd found the lost lamb. He didn’t scold the lamb or take a whip and drive the lamb back to the flock. Instead, the shepherd picked up the lamb and carried him on his shoulder all the way back home. Salvation is something Jesus does for us–not something we do for Him. He does it all. He carries us home.

In this second parable, it’s not a lamb that has wandered off on its own; it’s a coin that has been accidentally lost. The woman had ten coins and one of them was lost. The word Jesus used was for a coin that didn’t have much monetary value at the time. However, most scholars believe this coin was part of a headdress brides wore. Jewish brides often wore a headdress of ten coins strung across their foreheads. So the coin had great sentimental value because it was part of her wedding vows. That’s why she literally turned her house upside down to find it.

In this parable, the woman is so intent on finding the lost coin she does two important things: First, she lights a lamp and second she sweeps up the dirt on her floor. In our lost condition, we are represented by the lost coin and Jesus is the one searching to find us. There is an important application we can make from these two details of light and sweeping.

1. Jesus gives you light.
2. Jesus died to sweep out your dirt. The lost coin was somewhere on the floor, and the best way to find it was to take a broom and sweep up all the dirt. In the process of cleaning every square inch of the floor, the woman found the coin. There’s a great lesson here as well. In addition to giving you light, Jesus desires to cleanse your life of all the dirt and filth accumulated there. He died on the cross so your sins could be forgiven.

The jubilant shepherds called his friends and they rejoiced over the little lamb that was lost and is now found. The woman was so overjoyed when she recovered her lost coin she plans a party to celebrate it. Even so, Jesus said there is joy in the presence of God’s angels over one sinner who repents.

Why heaven rejoices when a single person repents?

1. The happiest experience of life is to be rescued by God. The saddest experience of life is to be spiritually lost–but to be found and rescued by God is the most joyous experience.
2. We should celebrate what heaven celebrates. What is it in life that really gets you excited? What would give you the greatest joy that you could imagine?
Our God is personally interested in every lost lamb, every lost coin, and every wayward son. He is interested in the secretary in your office, the student in the classroom, the executive in the boardroom, and the drunkard on the street. He wants every lost person to be found.