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24. Unveiling the Saving Love
of the Triune God toward Sinners
a. By the Parable of a Shepherd Seeking a Sheep
1 Now all the tax collectors and sinners were drawing near to Him to hear Him.
2 And both the Pharisees and the scribes murmured among themselves, saying, This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.
3 And He told them this parable, saying,
4 Which man of you, who has a hundred sheep and has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the one which is lost until he finds it?
5 And when he finds it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing.
6 And when he comes into his house, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.
7 I tell you that in the same way there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner repenting than over ninety-nine righteous persons who have no need of repentance.
b. By the Parable of a Woman Seeking a Coin
8 Or what woman having ten silver coins, if she loses one silver coin, does not light a lamp and sweep the house and seek carefully until she finds it?
9 And when she finds it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin which I lost.
10 In the same way, I tell you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner repenting.
c. By the Parable of a Father Receiving His Son
11 And He said, A certain man had two sons.
12 And the younger of them said to the father, Father, give me the share of the estate that falls to me. And he distributed to them his living.
13 And not many days after, the younger son, having gathered everything together, went abroad to a distant country and there squandered his estate by living dissolutely.
14 And when he had spent all, a severe famine occurred throughout that country, and he began to be in want.
15 And he went and joined himself to one of the citizens of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed hogs.
16 And he longed to be satisfied with the carob pods which the hogs were eating, and no one gave him anything.
17 But when he came to himself, he said, How many of my father's hired servants abound in bread, but I am perishing here in famine!
18 I will rise up and go to my father, and I will say to him, Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you.
19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.
20 And he rose up and came to his own father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was moved with compassion, and he ran and fell on his neck and kissed him affectionately.
21 And the son said to him, Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.
22 But the father said to his slaves, Bring out quickly the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet.
23 And bring the fattened calf; slaughter it, and let us eat and be merry,
24 Because this son of mine was dead and lives again; he was lost and has been found. And they began to be merry.
25 Now his older son was in the field. And as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing,
26 And calling to him one of the servants, he inquired what these things might be.
27 And he said to him, Your brother has come, and your father has slaughtered the fattened calf because he has received him back healthy.
28 But he became angry and was not willing to enter. And his father came out and entreated him.
29 But he answered and said to his father, Behold, so many years I have been slaving for you and have never neglected a command of yours, and you have never given me a goat that I might be merry with my friends;
30 But when this son of yours came, who devoured your living with harlots, you slaughtered for him the fattened calf.
31 And he said to him, Child, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours.
32 But we had to be merry and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead and has come to life, and he was lost and has been found.