All sorts of people crowded around Christ, and he never turned anyone away. No matter what they were like, or who they were, he was willing to take them in.
Now the tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to hear him. And the Pharisees and the scribes grumbled, saying, ‘This man receives sinners and eats with them’, (Luke 15:1-2).
His love never turns away, but extends to every ethnic group and nation, and any sort of person.
“For God so loved the world,” John tells us. The world. That includes all. The rich and the poor. The sickly and the healthy. Rulers and slaves. And he went out of his way to seek them.
What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it? (Luke 15:4).
Christ sought them all.
- Rich and poor, like Joseph of Arimathea and Lazarus the beggar.
- The learned and physicians, like Dionysius and Luke.
- Soldiers and fishermen, the Roman centurion and the apostles.
- Extortioners, like Zaccheus and Matthew.
- Thieves and murderers, the dying robber and Paul.
- Harlots and adulterers, the Samaritan and the adulteress.
- Tradespeople and rulers, Lydia and the Ethiopian eunuch.
- Whole families, like the jailer’s family at Philippi.
- Large crowds, like those on day of Pentecost.
- Even backsliders , like Peter.
- And little children, religious people, the lame, and lepers.
- And the blind and the deaf, like you and me.
And when his lost sheep come home, he rejoices over their homecoming!
And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost,’ (Luke 15:6).
God remembers each of our homecomings. And he awaits to welcome us in our eternal home with him!
And he’s still searching for lost sheep today, celebrating each new name added to his list. “My lost sheep: Sheila, Mario, and your name. Those weak, lame, blind, and foolish lost sheep, have come home!”
Let’s go out and find some sheep to take home with us!
For we are all part of the same flock — needy weak and lame, lost sheep longing for home!