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The Parable of Jesus: The Company You Keep

Chris Buttery
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A Latin proverb says, “He that lies down with dogs, rises up with fleas.”  A good word of caution telling us that we should watch the company we keep.  But can you always tell what a person is made of by the people they spend time with?



  • August 9, 2014
    11:30 AM
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We're going to continue here. Again with another story another parable. That Jesus taught and. Unpack actually a couple of them. Here this morning will do to you in one. And enjoy. Learning and sitting at the feet of Jesus some of you have probably heard the Latin proverb he you. Lives down with dogs. Rises with. Fleece. And that's. No shot at dogs or dog owners. Just want to. It's a Latin proverb. It's a good word of caution. That we should watch the company. We keep. But can you always tell. What a person is made of by the company he or she keeps the old adage birds of a feather flock together does have significance when we're talking about. Like attracting like. But what I find interesting is that those who were the most. Unlike. Jesus. Seem to be attracted to him. And those who profess to be righteous. Were jealous of him when we read these stories in the bible go with me to Luke Chapter fifteen. And we read an incident that took place. Very similar to what. What I've been describing here. Those that were. Unlike Jesus were attracted to him. While those that profess to be righteous. Were jealous of him. Looked up to fifteen verses one and two notice what the Dr says here. Then draw. Then drew near unto him. All the publicans and sinners. For to hear him. And the Pharisees and scribes myrmidons saying this man receives. Sinners and eats with them. The Pharisees were insinuating that Christ. Liked to associate with those who were clearly cinemas and that he was indifferent. And that he was in. Sensible to their lifestyle. Perhaps they were suggesting he had birds of a feather. That made this accusation because of jealousy. And they were jealous because a man like Jesus. A righteous man a good man. Should have been keeping company with the likes of them the religious folk. But he wasn't. He was instead giving attention to and working among an altogether different group of people. These religious leaders who said that they were the guardians of society. Were mad. Because that he whose life of purity. Had often Orde. And condemned them. Continued to extend sympathy to the social. What they consider to be social outcasts. Now the Pharisees. They were just mad at the fact that those who never came to church would go and listen to Jesus. It was a paradox for them that they couldn't understand those who considered themselves. Paragons of righteousness. Felt uncomfortable. In the presence of Jesus. Whereas those who made no claim to righteousness whatsoever. They felt curiously drawn to Jesus. What made these two groups of people different well first of all the Pharisees. They were hypocrites. Pharisees in the scribes who were hypocrites. And the publicans in the sinners. They didn't have any pretense this. This created that divide between the two groups. One class felt no need. While the other class felt the need of. Of righteousness one was content with their own righteousness. While the others. Knew it had no righteousness to offer at all these religious leaders often felt conned them NATION. In Jesus presence. And we would do well to ask ourselves occasionally how we fail. How we feel. In the Company. Of Jesus selves. Now I'm sure. What sideswipe the Pharisees of that day. Was the fact that they were uncomfortable. In the presence of Jesus and the. Sin is these bad people. Would not. Instead they were attracted to him. The religious folk couldn't understand why this place them. They couldn't get it. But they overlooked the fact that the The Today quandary. Was in the very accusation itself that they made in verse two. And the Pharisees and scribes moments saying. This man does wop. Receives. Sin is. He receives Cenis. That was the answer to that quandary. Why with these folk coming in why would they try to track to him because Jesus received them. That's a different word than. Accepted them. He simply save them. You understand they received Jesus receive these individuals Jesus receive them Jesus welcomed them. While others were condemning them. He was. He had his arms wide open to receive them. While others were gossiping about all the bad stuff that they were doing. He treated them like they were children of God. No longer restrains from the father. Not forgotten. By The Heavenly Father standing in a Bible study. Back in Pennsylvania. We were talking about how we should relate Christians. To relate to individuals people in the wall how do we get along how do we connect with folk how do we lead them to Jesus. And we're talking about this concept of even folks who know better even in the church who fall in a way. Fallen back to their previous lifestyle and have some gross sin and typically when they do that they are getting involved in something deeper than before. It's just the way it actually goes on Fortunately she says something that caught my attention and I and I'm paraphrasing here she said when someone falls into sin we don't need to get mad at them. We need to feel sorry for them. Just like parents feel when their children. Scrape. Then the on the ground oh how we feel. When a family member or a friend. Has fallen sick. When this happens you don't scold them do you. If the. Powerful words of never forgotten words that we ought to remember the spiritual leaders of the day in Jesus' day. Could have learned. These things from the very document that they profess knowing the Bible. They forgot about Psalms one hundred nineteen verse one seventy six. Where it says I have gone astray like a lost sheep. Seek your servant. What about Micah. Chapter seven in verse eighteen where it says who is a God like you. Potting iniquity. And passing of the transgression of the heritage. Or the remnant of his heritage. I should have known what the Bible said they should have been treating others as well. But Jesus didn't seek to remind them about those particular scriptures because they knew them. Very well they just want to plying them. Instead. He appealed to them. From life experiences in Luke Chapter fifteen. Which means it's OK for us to do the same thing from time to time. When Which. When we're reaching out to somebody else. In chapter fifteen of Luke. We find three parables that are taught by Jesus. You have the parable of the lost sheep. You've got the story of the last. Corn. And thirdly you've got the story of. What we typically commonly say. The story of the protocol son but really it's a story about the lost sons. Plural. And we'll talk about them next week in chapter fifteen we have these three parables. That each person in the crowd listening to Jesus that day. Could have easily related to. So what's the connection to the present situation. That Jesus is experiencing why. And what do they teach you and I. Today. Let's go to verse three. Of Chapter fifteen and let's take a look at he spake. This parable unto them and we'll read those four to saying. What man of you having an hundred sheep. If you lose one of them. Does not leave the ninety and nine. In the wilderness and go off to that which is lost. Until he find it. What man. If you. Having one hundred sheep. If you lose one of them does not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness and go after that. Which is lost until he finds it now in the uplands. Of. Perea. The raising of sheep was a very common occupation. And for that day to have about one hundred sheep was pretty impressive. And here in this particular story one is lost. Which may seem a little insignificant to you and I but one last brought serious concern to the shepherd. For example the loss of one sheep in that day to an eastern Shepherd. Would make an appreciable difference in the shepherds income. So the loss. Affected the shepherds livelihood but more than that eastern shepherds. Commonly knew each sheep that they cared for by name. They knew them by name. Not just as a part of the others but just as. Itself so the loss. To the shepherd was also very personal. How to see how the sheep get lost. Well we know sheep are a dumb animals. And they just get lost through ignorance and foolishness of their own devising. This one is lost. And once the sheep is lost they just cannot find their way back. Let's continue reading here and we're jumping over to verse eight. We're looking at two stories of the three today. The lost sheep in the last point those say either. What woman. Having ten pieces of Silva. If she lose one piece. Does not live a candle and sweep the house and seek diligently till she. Find it. The coin in this particular parable is a drug which has three grams of silver which was the wage of a farm laborer and. It was probably a pot of a dowry. Or maybe her own savings that she was going to pass on to her daughter at the time of her marriage. So the loss of the coin. Resulted in serious problems to lose. One coin was serious business. And could easily change one's future prospects from being hopeful. To being downright dreadful. So one of these two power. Mean what what is Jesus driving at here what was Jesus talking about and how did they relate to the challenge that. That was made to Jesus by these religious leaders who questioned his motives. About the about the company. That he was keeping. They charged him with eating and drinking with. Cynism with publicans. Well first of all what we need to know is that each parable. Is not complete in of itself. Each parable. Speaks to the different aspects with relation to the problem of sin. That humanity has. Because we all have the problem. Everyone has the problem of sin when you talk about sin. It levels the playing field. Everyone deals with guilt everyone is a sinner. This is something that. All of humanity deals with. So these stories. Tackle the question of sin the problem of sin. From a different perspective. And not only sin but it also deals with the glorious propositions of or proposition of salvation. So each of these parables look at the problem of sin. And the proposition of salvation from a different perspective so the lost sheep. The lost sheep simply represents. Those who know they lost. People who understand that they are far away from home they lost. A strange from the flock of God. And they cannot find their way back. It's stuck. And for whatever reason. They have drifted from what they've known to be ride. They've gone in search of. Greener pastures but you know what happens when you go looking for greener pastures done. The grass is never greener on the other side right it's just as green as it was on the previous side of the fence other side of the fence they've gone in search of green a posture. Hadn't realized that the grass was going to be green I left them lonely. It left them feeling helpless. It left them feeling defenseless without the shepherds protection and. Sell vacation you see. The last corn. The last coin represents those who are lost and they don't know that they are. The lost sheep. They know that they lost. They just. Find their way back home. The last coin. I don't know that they lost a coin is an inanimate object confit reason Rashan rationalize anything it's just an inanimate object these. Represent individuals perhaps that have become hardened. Through the deceitful notes of sin is hard to penetrate that because Foca used to just doing their thing the love of the world and all that it has to offer. Has hadan the hots. They can't see the truth. Condition. And therefore they don't since they need in the not looking for help. Really. And notice. In the parables it's interesting one has become lost. Outside the house. And the other one is lost with in the house. Smuts very similar to what we talked about last week. The the. The the appeal to the great feast. The man who prepared a feast told assumes to go out. Go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. They can be lost folk in the church and then he said OK some of come not all are responding. So go out. Go outside and bring them in. So you have one that's lost in the house. In these two stories and one this last. Outside of the house one is out there. And one is in here. But notice besides why they lost not only the reason why they lost. But a caring Shepherd. And a careful. Housekeeper a wife she's looking off the home is searching with determination and perseverance for the lost sheep and the lost coin the shepherd. And woman both represent. Loving kind. Heavenly Father who looks for and diligently seeks out his lost children because he cannot stand the thought of even one missing from the kingdom of heaven. That's the God that we have is talk a little bit more about the stories the shepherd. And the shepherd recounts his sheep. In the story and he finds one missing. He's bringing them into the sheep pen at night. Protect them from. Wolves and creatures of the night brings them in. He counts them as ninety nine one is missing so what does he do he goes out. Back out into the wilderness back out into the ravine in the valleys where he took his sheepy retraces his steps. To find that lost sheep you see at the risk of his own day. At the risk of danger to his own self his own person. He reaches out seeks that helpless sheep. Because he knows that that sheep cannot find its way back home. It's vulnerable out there. And so perhaps he's listening very carefully. To the faint bleat of desperation. And this. This shepherd will not return until. He's found that one lost sheep. And so the great shepherd. Of Mankind has gone in search friends. Of this one rebel. Planet. In the entire universe. He searched it out. And he has sought to rescue it from the dominion of sin and you know it was no small feat for divinity to lay aside. The royalty of heaven and the adoration of angels but Jesus did. For this one. Dot. Pin dot pinhead. Dot in the entire universe. Like a grain of sand in that all of the beaches of the world. God look down from his great eternity and decided to search out this one small seemingly insignificant planet why. Not because he had some financial need invested here in Planet Earth. But because he had a lot of interest. Because he had a lot of interests he knows our value. He knows our worth and because he. Infinitely loves us. He wants to keep company with the likes of you. And with the likes of me. So amazing. The love that God has for us. And even if there was just one. Who would say yes on this lonesome rebel planet. And reach out his or her hand. To the efforts of Jesus to rescue them. He would have died for just that one. Just. That one. Just you. Or just me heaven. Would have paid the infinite price. To redeem. One. You think you are not valued in the eyes of heaven. Step back and think again. About how much God loves you. It is astounding. The. Credible cost. That Heaven has paid to redeem. You and I now the coin. The coin you understand this thing is of. Incredible value. If you've lost a valuable coin maybe something like I then take something from in the US to use the has some value to it you know what this lady must have gone through. Searching that house looking for something of value in the eyes of God. Everyone has great value. Their precious in God side of the coin. At the time of Christ bore the image of the reigning paua and at creation you and I bowl of the image of God. Though it's being worn down through the effects of sin disobedience. The image of God can still be slightly seen in humanity. God desires more than anything to recover the lost coin you and I and again impress his image. Upon it. He has done all that he can to reclaim us. And what a shame that would be to let his efforts. BE WASTED ON MY FRIENDS both these parables teach three very important things. Three very important lessons first of all. God loves and cares for those that are often despised and graded as being no good whatsoever to anyone else to save. God loves those who are often despised by others. Greatly. God loves you and I and cares for us that's number one. Number two the tremendous effort. This. These parable speak to the tremendous effort that heaven makes. To win the loss. To win the lost havening. Spends a lot of time and effort. Resources. Spill blood. To reclaim. This last planet and number three. This parable always also teaches us she reveals to us the joy. In the heaven. That is experienced when one person responds to an appeal made to give the heart to Jesus Christ. The rejoicing that takes place in heaven. Both parables. In with good news. The sheep is out there lost the coin is in the dirt the grime of the ground of the house. The lost. But there's good news. Let's look at versus five through seven notice. Look fifteen five through seven and when he found it this is the shepherd looking for the lost sheep. When he found it. He laid it on his shoulder this. Laid it on his shoulders. Read choice again. And when he comes home he calls together his friends and neighbors saying and to them. Rejoice with me for I found my sheep which was lost. I say unto you that likewise joy shall be in heaven. Over one sinner that repents more than over ninety nine just persons which need. No repentance the lost sheep. Is found. Good news. And there's rejoicing in heaven when one sinner repents. Jump over now to verse nine and ten notice. And women she has found a talking of the woman. Talking of the widow. There in her house looking for the coin when she found the coin. She told her friends and neighbors she got on the phone call them. Rejoice when they be happy with me. The thing that I told you I lost. I have found. Likewise Jesus said. I say unto you that there is joy in the presence of the angels of God. Over one. Cinna that repentance. The last has been found. The shepherd doesn't scold. The last the sheep that the. Cost him time and effort to rescue. He doesn't drive it. He doesn't push it all prodded all the way home no. The Bible says he carries it on his shoulder us. The coin is found and laid. Dusty and blows off the sediment. Places a back where it should belong. Long. And she has no feelings of regret having gone to the trouble. Of rescuing that coin. Friend thank Jesus. Thank God that Jesus ends the stories. Happily. As a happy ending to the story stories of success. And all stories of Fadia. And everyone who will submit to ever be ransomed to Christ will rescue from the pit. Of corruption and the bra is of sin it doesn't matter what your past has been doesn't matter what predicament you might find yourself in right now there may be someone here today. Listening in the sound of to the sound of my voice. Knowing this stock. And the down deep and they are caught in sin and it's got a firm hold on them. And they feel like they're lost and they can't find their way home. This story tells you that you have a father. A savior who comes off to you and rescues you doesn't matter where you are he will rescue you or place you. Back in the sheepfold. He'll bring you home. Nots the stories of failure this is a story. Of success you see he will save anyone from the grime. Of This World. Delusions and from the dirt. Of disobedience and. Sin somebody has got to say amen. About the things the wonderful things that Jesus does. For the for humanity for the children of man. Jesus is a mighty Savior and He will save us. To the uttermost we ought to take courage here this morning. Especially those who might feel fine. From Home. Don't think that perhaps. God will forgive you. Perhaps he will permit you to come. He doesn't want to wait for you to repent. He takes his first steps toward you. He loves you. And he wants you. And if in he would search for you and he has search for you with all of his hot. He spent. Everything in order to rescue you I don't know how he does it why he does it except. It's all motivated by love. It's all done because he couldn't stand the thought and Konstam the thought of being in heaven for eternity with. Out. You. I know Jesus. Rescues since you do too. You know he reaches out to you. You know he speaks to you hot. That's what Jesus does for each one of us. The rescues the children. Of man. He salvages us friends. The stories that we've read here this morning teach us that Christianity is not some religion that you belong to where you get together and you. Pat each other on the back because you're better than other people. Because you found God on all known. Christianity presents a God who's been seeking. Who's been searching who's been longing off to you before you even knew him. All wanted to know him. While we were enemies the Bible says Christ died for us while we friends we are a community really we are a community. Of the rescued. We are a community of the salvaged. We have been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb. And how cold is to extend that offer. To others you see there is joy in heaven. When one. Sin A. Repentance. I mean you can just stop. Sit back and listen and perhaps you could hear the angels saying. Everything is put on hold there around here you read Revelation this surrounding the throne of God. And the angels of God The twenty four as the four base their search. They're praising God. Adoring him the creator of the heavens and the earth. The one who was in IS and IS YET TO COME. The. One. The Alpha and the Omega there worshipping at his throne. Then all of a sudden on planet Earth. Someone says Lord Jesus I'm I'm lost can you find me everything stops. All of Heaven is still day listen to that one plea. Coming from one week so. Recognizing that they need a savior. And I say Lord Jesus save me. And all of heaven. Breaks out in the rapturous music beautiful music you'd never lay joy you has a hood. All of Heaven rejoices because somebody said. I want to give. I live to Jesus. I'm lost without him I'm blind. I cannot see Lord say you made. And as Peter cried out as he was sinking into the water Jesus. Reached down his hand and picked him up. All the takes is a simple cry. All it takes is Lord cheesey I don't pray don't have to be eloquent. Lord Jesus just save me help me. And he will step down and he will salvage you and save you and rescue you because he loves you. That's the Savior we serve. We serve a powerful god. One who loves us. One who's done everything to save us all of heaven. Rejoice this. When one just simply says yes. To Jesus Christ. All of Heaven breaks out in song and rejoicing. For that one who said yes to Jesus. All friends in that powerful prayer. Jesus prayed in John Chapter seventeen. In verse eighteen he said as. You have sent me into the world to rescue. To ransom and redeem the world. Sorrow I have sent them into the world. Every person that has been rescued by Jesus Christ. Is cold to become a rescuer. Everyone is being called to become a rest someone said. If you are not a missionary you are a mission field. Everyone has become cold to rescue yes there are some who seem indifferent. Some who may not care. Yet there are those who since they need desperate need of peace. And they need to reach and need a helping hand to help them up. To help them out in the home. Even in the church there are those who need assistance. Even in perhaps your own home some have drifted. Some who have strayed they need understanding not scolding. They need grace not judging They need patience. Not neglect. If we spent time in gets them many if we spend. Moments lingering at Calvary. We'd see how much. Heaven values the worth of one. One soul and. Haven't stopped. Its entire program. To rescue you. And I. You are worth. An awful lot. In the eyes of God Heaven has paid an incredible price for your salvation. Don't be here today thinking that you are not worth anything. Be here today thinking that your life. Is not amounting to much. Or has little value in the stories that we have read today that you are valued highly valued. In the eyes of heaven. God knows what you're worth the cost to the life of his son. You are valued. You're worth something today. Jesus died that you my live. You are valuable on two accounts first he created you. Second of all. He died to redeem you. That's the Savior. That's the God that we worship and he's calling us. He's calling each one of us. To be rescue was for him to lend a helping hand to reach out to all those who experience hopelessness in their lives. Calling for us who know what it means to be rescued to be salvaged to be there and implement in the hand of God to rescue and salvage somebody else for him. Calling us to do this. Media was a Web site dedicated to. If you would like to listen to.


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