Summary: A short sermon for our Older Folks addressing the theme- "do we matter to God?". "Are we significant?"
Luke 15- three parables. For Silver Service 5th Jan 2006
Well- how much does God love you, and how significant are you to Him?
- could be forgiven for thinking you’re not particularly significant… don’t matter
o you’re one of 6 billion
o particularly if you haven’t lead a perfect life!
" Jews had this understanding that sinners didn’t matter to God
" "There is joy before God when those who provoke him perish from the world"
But Jesus tells three parables, stories, to show just how much we matter to God
- how happy He is to give us the Kingdom
- how much rejoicing there is in heaven when one person comes back to Him
o in fact: this is the theme of these 3 parables- the rejoicing
- and just how significant and valuable we are to Him
You see- we’re not one in 6 billion. We’re one in a hundred
- okay, we’re called ’sheep’- and that’s not always flattering
o (but I find it a consolation: sheep aren’t known for their cleverness, and don’t always understand what’s going on- they simply follow and trust the master for food etc)
- but if you are the ONE sheep who needs help… are lost or confused- you matter more to Him than the 99 others
You are phenomenally significant
- and how He rejoices when He finds you!
- I love that Hymn "The King of love my shepherd is":
"perverse and foolish oft I stayed- but yet in love He sought me and on His shoulders gently laid and home rejoicing brought me"
But as though that’s not enough in telling us how significant we are, Jesus tells another story- and He ups the significance and status. Changes the odds
This time you’re not one in 100
You’re one in 10. A valuable silver coin. Part of a life’s savings
- lost, again. Needing finding. Not insignificant, as the Jews would have thought (unless you were particularly religious in the way THEY wanted)
And the owner- a woman this time. (The female, motherly, caring characteristics of God…).. drops all she is doing and searches and scours until she finds you
- and oh how pleased she is!
o Again; the theme of rejoicing, partying, gladness
o The angels throw a party when you and God get back together again
- I remember feeling this when I found my faith again in 1982
o Felt the pleasure of heaven!
o (have you felt this? Well- whether you have felt it or not the angels party when you come back to God)
Do you know- in the Bible it’s not so often people searching for God- it’s God searching for them
- He is the one who takes the initiative
- Goes out of His way to find us
o Has been searching for us and crying out ’Adam, where are you?’ right from the day we checked out of Eden.
But the next bit shows us just how significant we are. Loved. Valued. Worth the world to God- whatever our age or where we are at with Him
Now it’s one on one. The odds have changed again. This is really how significant you are. And you are worth so much more than an animal or inanimate object: money and coins
- you’re as valuable as a son
- in fact you ARE as valuable as His SON- as He gave His Son for you
o not just ANY son- His One and Only Son
o To pay the price for you to be rescued from the thicket…. Redeemed from insignificance… the dust under the bed where you have fallen (if you’re a coin)… the lostness of being alone now and in eternity. Saved from the pigs swill of your own making.
God left the security of heaven and came all this way to seek us- in His Son, Jesus
And in this story of huge significance- the Father waits for the one who is the worth of His only Son to come back. Waits daily. Watches daily
- and oh how He rejoices when He does
o hitches up His skirt
o And throws the biggest party ever
He loves you. You are worth the world to Him. Worth His Son
- and LK 12:3 fear not, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom.
As we start this New Year- let us remember that and go forward with surety, security, boldness and confidence