#DailyDevotion Jesus Sinners Will Receive In Repentance
Luk 15:1-2 Now the tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to hear him. (2) And the Pharisees and the scribes grumbled, saying, “This man receives sinners and eats with them.”
It might confuse some people today that Jesus told people to repent of their sins. These same people he preached repentance to were these very same tax collectors and sinners. They had heard John and now they had heard Jesus calling all men to repent of their sins and to be received by God. Some moderns think Jesus just let people who lived sinful lives to continue in them. This is not the case. But Jesus did value them just as he valued those who thought they had no need of repentance. He called them to repent as well.
So yes, Jesus sinners will receive. The good news is that Father in heaven will receive you even though you have lived in sin. He calls you to turn to him. He calls you to turn to Jesus and trust in the forgiveness he has won for you on the cross. You no longer have to live the life of sin you once lived in.
On this occasion he was calling both the sinners and Pharisees to repent: the sinners for transgressing the law, the Pharisees for not reaching out to those who were lost in their sins and proclaiming the mercy of God to them. Jesus came to proclaim good news of the kingdom of God to all people. That good news is God will forgive you your sins. Confess your sins, turn from them and turn to God. God will receive you and he will receive you through Jesus.
Jesus then goes on to tell three parables: the parable of the lost sheep, the parable of the lost coin and the parable of the prodigal son. The first two we will deal with today. In the lost sheep story, the shepherd leaves the 99 sheep who aren’t lost to find the one who is. He searches him out till he find it and takes it home. Jesus is this shepherd. He is constantly looking for sheep that are lost, for sinners who have lost their way and a feeding on the hills of sinful living. He carries them back to the fold and rejoices when he finds even just one. We too should rejoice when sinners, those who live sinful lives repent of their sins and find their way back into the Church, sheepfold of God. Indeed on top of that we should be causing the angels to rejoice as we lead repentant lives of our own.
Then there is the story of the lost coin. It’s just lost. It doesn’t know it’s lost. The lost sheep probably didn’t know it was lost either. The coin is just dead. It is inanimate. We too were dead in our sins. But Jesus went searching for us and rejoiced when he found us. Jesus and the angels also rejoice when Jesus finds another lost coin, a sinner that had no idea it needed to repent yet now having heard the law and the gospel repents of their sins and believes the good news of acceptance by God and his Christ. We must never think anyone is too far gone for repentance and faith. We need to join the angels in rejoicing over one sinner who comes to repentance and trust in Jesus. We too need to cause them to rejoice as we lead repentant lives trusting in Christ our Savior.
Merciful God and Father, grant us repentance unto life and let us be channels of Jesus calling our fellow man to repent of their sins and to find comfort and assurance in the acceptance of Jesus and being received by him into your heart. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.