Devotion: Monday, September 16, 2019

Welcome to “Word from the Center” MONDAY, a devotional word from the Center of our faith, Jesus Christ, with reflections from His Word. I’m Gregory Seltz. Today’s reading is from Luke 15:8-10 where Jesus says,    

“What woman, having ten silver coins,a if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp and sweep the house and seek diligently until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin that I had lost.’ 10 Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”


If I could define the essence of the Gospel message from God’s perspective, it most certainly would have to include Jesus’ teachings in Luke 15, especially where it says, “There is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents” (v. 10). The stories that Jesus tells in Luke 15 speak about a joy that comes when a precious, lost thing is found. That “finding joy” is a centerpiece of the Gospel message of the Bible, God the Father’s sending of His Son Jesus so that sinners like you and me could be saved. There is no joy when things are lost. However, the Bible talks about God as one who actively seeks to save rebellious ones, sinful ones, lost ones like you and me.

In the lesson for today, Jesus tells a story about a woman who loses one of her silver coins. When Jesus speaks this parable, silver coins were precious. To lose any would be a disaster. These parables are hard for us to really hear because we live in a time and in a country where we have so much. So try to think of a time when that one coin mattered. Try to think of a time when you didn’t have enough for what you needed. Think of that time, and then try to imagine losing what you already had. It’s important that we realize that each one of these coins was precious to her, each one mattered. She could not afford for any of them to be lost. So she turns the house upside down looking for them.

That’s just a picture of what God was and is willing to do so that you might be found and receive His forgiveness and love. He turned the world upside down when He sent His Son to live your life under the Law, to die your eternal death on the cross, and to give you Christ’s blood-bought eternal life as a gift. That’s not what any other “gods” do for people, let alone sinful, rebellious people. But that’s just what He did. It is the most shocking message in all the world that the One with eternal power and authority over all things would be so willing to be a servant, to even suffer and to die, for those who deserved it least.

These parables ramp up the value of the “lost and found” perspective. First, there’s a lost sheep and the shepherd goes looking. Then there’s a lost coin, and the woman turns the house inside out to find it. Finally, there are lost sons, and a father who rejoices when the prodigal one returns home. The point? It’s a lost world, but one that God engages to save. Lost, then found, then joy! That tells you about the God who created and redeemed you. That’s an eternal perspective too. It’s one that can comfort us amidst the challenges of the day; it’s a picture of God’s very own heart for you right now, one that He never wants you to forget.

PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, give me a real sense of how I was lost and vulnerable, so that I might appreciate even more being found by You that I might live in You forever. AMEN.