Luke Chapter 15

September 16, 2010

This Preaching in Shorts Bible study is on the Book of Luke. Each chapter is read verse by verse with the major points highlighted and discussed.

You can listen to the study by clicking here

or you can watch it below:

Luke Chapter 15 from Preaching In Shorts on Vimeo.

Luke 15:1-32 (NIV)
1 Now the tax collectors and “sinners” were all gathering around to hear him. 2 But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” 3 Then Jesus told them this parable: 4 “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Does he not leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? 5 And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders 6 and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ 7 I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent. 8 “Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Does she not light a lamp, sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? 9 And when she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost coin.’ 10 In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” 11 Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons. 12 The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them. 13 “Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. 14 After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. 15 So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. 16 He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything. 17 “When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! 18 I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.’ 20 So he got up and went to his father. “But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. 21 “The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ 22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. 23 Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. 24 For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate. 25 “Meanwhile, the older son was in the field. When he came near the house, he heard music and dancing. 26 So he called one of the servants and asked him what was going on. 27 ‘Your brother has come,’ he replied, ‘and your father has killed the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.’ 28 “The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him. 29 But he answered his father, ‘Look! All these years I’ve been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends. 30 But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!’ 31 “‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. 32 But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.'”

As we look into Luke 15 and 16 we will see a very interesting concept appear. Jesus begins teaching His disciples that people are the prize. Unlike the Pharisees who don’t value people at all, Jesus tells His disciples that people (sinners) have value. If you were here at the Vineyard last weekend, we talked about Standing Alongside the Broken and those same principles are illustrated here in Luke 15.

Luke 15:1-10

The Pharisees are muttering about Jesus hanging out with sinners and tax collectors. The Pharisees would not hang around such people, nor would they be allowed in the Synagogues and yet Jesus welcomes them and eats with them. In response to the Pharisees condemnation and judgment Jesus tells two parables.

The first is about a man with one hundred sheep who loses one, goes looking for it, and rejoices when he finds it. The second is about a woman who loses a coin and will hunt for it until she finds it and then rejoice.

The point of the parables is that it is the same for God, only with people. To God, people are the prize and there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels over one sinner who repents. We are so individually important to God, that when one person repents and is saved there is joy, not only for God but for all those who share his Heart. We are not pawns used to gain some objective as people were to the Pharisees. With God, we are the objective!!!

Luke 15:11-32

The Prodigal Son. I like to call it the Loving Father. This story is a perfect follow up to the previous parables which talk about how much God really loves us. We are the prize. Even after we have repeatedly rejected Him and gone our own way and done our own thing, He is waiting and watching for us. When we turn, repent, He comes running to greet us! He quiets our confession and demonstrates His love for us, welcoming us back to real life which is only found in Him.

The older son represents the Pharisees, who are actually angry that God shows love to and welcomes sinners. They are cold hearted in their self-righteousness they don’t care about people that are lost. Even after the Father demonstrated His love for them as well by inviting the older brother to the feast, they are unmoved. It is their way or the highway. Our ongoing question must always be, “Who are we being more like in our relationships with people, like God who sees people as the prize, or like the Pharisees who care more about form, rules and regulations than people. God help us to live lives in such way that we would never become a people whose actions actually cut people off from experiencing your life giving love as we have.

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