Evangelical Lutheran Diocese of North America

Tuesday after the Seventh Sunday after Trinity Sunday

Posted on July 20, 2021 by Pastor Dulas under Devotions
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Scripture: St. Luke 15:1-7 (NKJV)
15:1 Then all the tax collectors and the sinners drew near to Him to hear Him. 2 And the Pharisees and scribes complained, saying, “This Man receives sinners and eats with them.” 3 So He spoke this parable to them, saying:
4 “What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it? 5 And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. 6 And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!’ 7 I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance.
What a joy it is to find something we have lost! In our lives we can turn things upside-down looking for something. We obsess over where we last saw that thing, and can have a hard time focusing on anything else until we find it. And it is usually in the last place we looked.
Jesus tells us here that there is the same care and concern in Heaven over every sinner who repents. It may be tempting to think we can get away with a particular sin for a time without being caught, especially if no one else knows about it. But God knows all, and sees all, and that kind of sin grieves Him just as the more crass outward sins, such as murder and theft, that get reported in the news.
But thanks be to Him that He does search for us! Through His Word He calls us to repentance. His Word does not return to Him void (Isaiah 55:11), and it works both repentance and faith in us. As he teaches here, there is great joy in Heaven when sinners repent!
Prayer: O God, whose never-failing providence ordereth all things both in heaven and on earth, we humbly beseech Thee to put away from us all hurtful things and to give us those things which be profitable for us; through Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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