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Reflections on Luke 15

David Shin

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David Shin

Pastor, Hillside O'Malley Seventh-Day Adventist Church in Anchorage, AK

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Recorded

  • December 16, 2017
    11:30 AM
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I want to invite you to open your Bibles if you have not already to our scripture reading Luke Chapter 15 and beginning in verse one Jesus is speaking and there is a host of individuals that are crowding in around him and the Bible describes this group in particular as tax collectors and sinners these were the uncouth of society individuals that perhaps grew up on the other side of the railroad tracks or in a part of town that you did not go to at night and Jesus is being thronged by this host of individuals and this bonded the Pharaoh sees so much that they vocalized it openly by saying this man receives sinners and eats with them so he spoke this parable to them and if you so desire invite you to open or pull out your study guide you can see it there the 1st passage there on the screen and I've highlighted this man receives sinners and eats with them. Jesus associated with sinners bothered the fairest see so much that they were vocalize this openly how can it be that this person associates and hangs out with these people it bothered them and I would venture to contend that the reason why it bothered them was that they had a certain picture of God a picture of God that when we sin or are categorized as a sin nerved by the way we all are that God backs up. He did this associates with sinners so much so that he doesn't even want to eat with them or associate with them and this idea of God came into Gone flaked with the activity of Jesus when he was on this earth he was associating eating with publicans and sinners I pastored a church in which we had an individual that would regularly attend and he had a medical condition diabetes and he was not able to be properly treated his feet were literally rotting and I remember the 1st time I shook his hand as he was leaving he left and then afterwards there was this Roma that just wafted past me and it smelled like something had died in the summer time it grew worse as the sores would become infected and there were slits in his shoes and as he would walk they would be fluid that would out of his shoes onto the floor and in the summer time he would be in this enclosed small Sabbath school room and those saints would come out of there literally gagging because the whole room was filled with the stand and the aroma of this individual and he would sit on one side of the church and I got up to preach one day and I wondered why the right side of the church was so full. All of a sudden and I noticed that there was this man on the left side. The reaction of the saints well meaning Saints was they wanted to avoid the presence and the interaction with this individual and that is the picture of God that many people have that when we are categorized or when we sin or when we fall that God backs up and doesn't want anything to do with us much like the putrid smell of this individual we. Don't want to associate and that was the picture of God that the Farriss had and it was so entrenched in their thinking that when Jesus began to associate with these people but the complaint how is it that this man receives sinners and eats with them this type of thinking was so up orange to Jesus that he could not let it pass and so he said let me tell you a story matter of fact it was not just one story this was so important to Jesus he was so passionate about correcting this misunderstanding about the character of God that he said I'm going to tell you 3 stories one after another and you know the 1st story is the parable of the lost sheep the shepherd at night is counting is sheep as they're going into the fold and he gets the 9899 ones missing counts again sure enough there is one missing and he goes out to find the lost sheep and when he finds it he does not beat the enemy. He places the animal on his shoulder. And rejoicing goes home and calls together his friends and neighbors and says Rejoice with me for my sheep. It was lost but now it is found in just a simple observation about the lost sheep in your study guide the sheep know he's lost and does not know the way back home this is an application that we can make about individuals that are lost they know that they are lost they know that they are in an unsaved condition but they don't know the solution they don't know their way back home and there are individuals in Anchorage today they know that they're not and in a saving relationship with Jesus Christ but they don't know the solution they don't know how to get back to the fold and you'll notice that the last condition of the sheep entails the full attention of the shepherd In other words our state does not cause God to back up it causes God to step in even more that gives me a lot of hope in the realisation that when I from the moment begin to stray from his will that right there God His putting into operation all of the resources of heaven necessary. To bring me back home Amen not backing up and say Oh David what's your problem you're on your own you could know that even in your or my last condition that there is a plan a strategy all the resources of heaven are marshaled to bring you back home God does not back up he in gauges he seeks to bring us back home Christ object lessons page 189 and 90 desponding sold take courage even though you have done wickedly do not think that perhaps God will pardon your transgressions and permit you to come in to use presents God has made the 1st advance while you were in rebellion against him he went forth to seek you God is initiating God is searching God is seeking moving very quickly to the lost coin The 1st was the sheep the sheep knows he's lost the sheep does not know the way back home in the parable the lost coin a woman is in a house she has 10 silver coins she loses one and she sweeps the entire house to find the last coin and this is an application that we can make the coin does not know it's lost and it's lost in the home the 1st category was a category in which the sheep knows he's lost the problem is he doesn't know the way back home but in this case it can be argued or applying that the coin does not have the capability to know it's lost condition it's unconscious of its state its spiritual state the coin does not know it's lost and is lost in the home and yet. The simple fact that the coin is unconscious of his spiritual state does not mean that it does not have the same regard of Haven't a man even though we may be unconscious of our spiritual state heaven is engaged and seeking to reclaim us even though we may be lost in the home. Now one application that Christ object lessons brings out in page 195 if there is in the family because a member of this lost coin was lost where it was lost in the home one child who is unconscious of his small state of his sinful state parents should not rest let the candle be lighted search the word of God and by its light let everything in the home be diligently examined to see why this child is lost less let parents search their own hearts examine their habits and practices I don't know why it is but sometimes it is easier to share Christ on a mission trip or someone out there than to your own family members I don't know why that is when I have some ideas but we have individuals that are associated with us on a regular intimate basis are family members that perhaps are not in a loving relationship with God. As I study this this was particularly resonating for me as a minister as I thought what would it profit. If I engaged so much time and energy and resources in saving the quote last out there which I should do as a minister but if my own family is not in the kingdom that would be a devastating moment. I was sharing with the Sabbath school class this morning about the reality of the 2nd Coming and how emotionally there is this idea that at the 2nd coming it will be nothing but euphoria and I think there will be euphoria at the 2nd coming remember Jesus comes in the clouds of glory the dead are resurrected we're given a new body we're caught up to meet Jesus in the air and I'm going to be like oh wow praise God Oh wow I'm here I'm here I'm here and as we are in the cloud from my. Emotional and. I says it just might psychological emotional standpoint of you as we are in the cloud there is going to be with me individually and I believe with you that we're going to be looking for it's kind of like being rescued from the Titanic and you're on the rescue ship and you're so thankful but the immediate thing that you do after being thankful that you're rescued is to look for people better near and dear to you and I will be looking for family to Neil Hudson. And you expand from there my parents my sister and heaven forbid that in that moment at the 2nd coming as we're caught up and in the Cloud People are going to be looking for. It's going to be that dynamic looking around for family and heaven forbid the sinking realisation that sets in 2 individuals after searching the entire multitude and then the realisation comes in they are not there. It's going to be this strange. Conflict of emotion euphoria on one hand and yet the most devastating moment of your experience the realisation that your loved one the same person that you existed within the same home for years is not going to be in heaven. And the good news is we're not there yet Emma that reality hasn't happened yet and we have the opportunity now to ask Jesus to shine through us to our own home so that they can be touched and drawn by his love I don't understand how intercessory prayer all works but the Bible indicates that prayers are not just a psychological means of making us feel better the Bible indicates that there is power in prayer I don't know the exact science of it and by the way prayer is not to convince God of something that he is not convinced of yet he wants to save more than we want to but evidently there are certain agreements in the great controversy between Christ insane 1001 of the foundational elements is this notion of consent. And it seems to be that we can not only consent for ourselves but we can also ask God to intervene in someone else's life now I'm not saying that it's the same category as them asking for intervention from God but in the Bible you see that story of those 4 friends that are bring that paralytic to Jesus they tore down the roof brought that man before Jesus and notice what the Bible says in the book of Mark the Bible says and when Jesus saw them fake. In other words it was not just the faith of that man it was the faith of his friends that Jesus took into consideration in healing and forgiving that individual so when you pray for your children that are not in a relationship with Jesus Christ and God goes in to shape circumstances and events that he would not be at liberty to do had you not asked I believe the same is there to contend with that situation much like he stood before the body of Moses in Jude since his look what are you doing and I believe that Jesus says the LORD rebuke you because he may not have asked for it but his parents asked for it intervention we have the privilege and opportunity of interceding for our loved ones Heaven forbid that in that cloud any one of our family members are missing from that reality if there's a family one or one child that is unconscious of his or her sinful state parents should not rest sometimes. We can get so caught up in ensuring that our children are physically provided for it which we should have the best education in the world which they should and we sometimes leave out the spiritual element of eternity beyond I think of the story of him as Richard SR thing I told this before I tell it again he's the radio evangelist the late radio evangelist the founder and director speaker of the voice of prophecy I was reading his biography and he was interviewed and he was asked the question after his retirement do you have any regrets in your ministry and life and he paused for a moment and said One regret I have is I wish I would have spent more time with my family he was so much on the road and he tells the story of how in a critical moment in his son's childhood and in his teaching teenage years his son began to go away from the Lord and one evening his son was headed out for the bar to go clubbing that evening and in a rebellious state was heading out the door and his reach for the door knob to open the door he heard a voice in the other room pause he said that's strange so he tipped toed over to the other room pressed his ear against the door it was his father his father was praying and his father was saying Lord Father please give me my son please give me my son back I want my son please give me my son back his father was in the other room on his knees praying for his son and that melted his son's heart so much he did not go out that evening went back up to his room later he gave his heart to the Lord and became a part of the voice of prophesy. And in my experience. As a young person. There were critical moments in my unconverted state when I was in a situation which parents shudder about in which decisions could have been made that would have dramatically altered the trajectory of my life one decision split 2nd from that decision in the valley of decision a decision that could have dramatically altered my life and I likely would not be in ministry today and in that critical moment as I was about to decide being told multiple different directions and in that moment I could not move forward with that action because the realisation came over me that my mother. Was praying for me and I could NOT couldn't move forward pray for your kids pray for your children there is power in prayer and there is a spiritual reality that we simply can not see all of heaven is marshaled and all the resources of heaven are there to bring our family members into the eternal reality that we can't see you know friends one day there is going to be a moment at the 2nd coming when this eternal reality will totally swallow up this one and all our lives this side of heaven it's just like that we're here and we're gone and I pray for my own awareness that I would not get so caught up. In this life and sell out eternity nor would I want to have any individual influenced as a result of my ambivalence in regards to how it is with theirs. What a privilege it is to reflect to God the story of the parable the loss sheep the lost coin we come last to the parable of the lost son the prodigal son willingly leaves his father's house he knows his way back home this is the 3rd category the 1st one the sheep knows he's lost he doesn't know the way back home the 2nd one the last coing doesn't know it's lost and is lost in the home and this 3rd one is interesting the prodigal son willingly leaves the father's house and he knows his way back home and in this case it's interesting because in the 1st 2 there is an all out search for the lost entity the lost sheep in the last coin everything is dropped in everything is channeled all the resources are there to bring this last entity back home but in this 3rd category you'll notice that for the son that willingly leaves the home and he knows the way back home the father waits at home now this is not to say that the Holy Spirit is not still working in this case because you'll notice that later on when the the son goes out and just wastes all of his inheritance on prostitutes and gambling and so forth he's sitting at the pig pen and then it comes to his realisation and his awareness that he should go back to his Father the Holy Spirit is working on this young man's heart. The prodigal son willingly leaves the fall or sounds he knows his way back home and I love this from Christ object lessons I thought I had it on the screen but I don't hear. Page 2 or 5 I'll give you the fill in the blank so you know what it is page 2 or 5 it says Do not listen to the enemy suggestion to stay away from Christ until you have made yourself better until you are good enough to come back to God If you wait until then you will never come when Satan points to your filthy garments repeat the promise of Jesus Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out arise and go to your father he will meet you a great way off he will hasten to enfold you in His arms of infinite love. Can tell you how many times there have been a circumstance and situation that I have deviated from the will of God and it's in that moment that I have to fight with a certain picture of God that he doesn't want me to come back I know I'm not the only one that goes with this friends that's a lie this is a window into the heart of God that the moment that we blow it and we fall all of heaven is there to bring us home but not only that that in the moment that we even turn or have an inkling which is a miracle of grace in itself that the father runs out to meet each. Puts his robe on you and restores shoot by His grace. In each of the stories. There is an all out celebration for the lost that has been found you see it in the 1st story this is the repetition and the theme that comes up over and over again the lost sheep is found he calls together his friends and neighbors and says Rejoice with me the last point she says all my friends and neighbors are invited over rejoice with me and then in the 3rd story there is a a feast a celebration for the lost son that has returned home and this is an indication as to what heaven celebrates about that in that moment that I knelt down and accepted Christ as my personal savior in Pennsylvania years ago that in that critical moment in my life and said Lord Jesus I want you to come into my heart that there was a moment in heaven when God the Father Jesus the Holy Spirit billions of Angels looked down and there was a celebration just for little old me just for me there is a place in God's heart that only you can feel and I want to close of this from steps to Christ page 100. The relations between God and each soul are as distinct and full as though there were not another soul upon the earth. The relations between God and each soul are as distinct and full as though there were not another soul upon the earth which means that there is in the heart of God a place that only you can fill and when you talk to him and you go through your day he's thinking about you as though you're the only person in the world. But a spray. Father in heaven we thank you. For the heart of God for who you are and we thank you that even though we are sinners in need of a Savior that you do not back up but you lean in all the more to bring us back Father we pray that each one of us would be touched and brought into a fuller understanding of the love of God. May you draw us closer to you by your arms of love. And through this revelation found in Jesus Christ we pray Amen this media was brought to you by audiophiles a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio verse you would like to listen more sermon leave it to W.W.W. audio verse or.

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