Reclaiming the Lost

Key Verse: “The Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.”
—Luke 19:10

Selected Scripture:
Luke 18:31-34;

THE MINISTRY OF JESUS attracted all types of Israelites, from parents with little children to publicans and sinners, from the poor and the handicapped to the rich. The background scriptures of Luke 18:15-37 tell of parents bringing their children to Jesus and the disciples rebuking the parents for doing so. Jesus asked the children to come to him and used them as examples of the humble and teachable character necessary for all to possess if they were to enter the kingdom of God.

A rich young ruler came to Jesus seeking to know what to do to gain eternal life. Jesus called attention to God’s commandments in the Law. When he claimed to be trying to keep them, Jesus said he lacked one thing, “Sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me.” (vs.22) He couldn’t do it, causing Jesus to comment on how difficult it would be for the rich to enter God’s kingdom. Peter spoke up saying, “Lo, we have left all, and followed thee.” (vs. 28) Our Lord’s response was that for so doing they would receive greater rewards.

What no one knew, including the apostles, was that before anyone of Adam’s family could receive anything worthwhile such as eternal life, Jesus would have to die as a ransom for father Adam. He tried to disclose this precious truth to the apostles, taking them aside and saying, “Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished. For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spitted on: And they shall scourge him, and put him to death: and the third day he shall rise again.” (vss. 31-33) This was a brief summary of events to come. They understood none of these things, nor would the events that followed make any sense to them.

They passed a blind man who cried unto him as the ‘son of David’ to have mercy upon him. Although rebuked by others, the blind man was persistent and Jesus rewarded him for his faith by restoring his sight. The blind man was most grateful and glorified God. As Jesus continued his journey he passed through Jericho. There was a rich publican who wanted to see Jesus, but because of the press of the crowds and being small of stature, he climbed a tree on the route Jesus was taking. Jesus spotted him in the tree and told him to come down because he was to be his host for that night. At this there was murmuring by all the people.

At the home of a joyous Zacchaeus Jesus was told by the publican that he wanted to give half of his goods to the poor and if he had collected taxes unjustly of anyone, he would restore them fourfold. Jesus said, “This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.”—Luke 19:9-10

Jesus was glad to go to Jerusalem and to give up his life for the salvation of those like Zacchaeus who were considered to be traitors to Israel and the worst of sinners because of their profession. All the poor and despised people of earth will receive the benefits of Jesus’ ransom sacrifice during the future kingdom because he truly came to earth to save the lost.

Dawn Bible Students Association
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