Anyone who has studied the Bible for any length of time knows that while the central message of Scripture is simple to comprehend, there are many passages that require patience and hard work to unlock. Oftentimes, this is because we are now separated from the original context in which these books were written by time and culture. What was once plain to a passage's original hearers can seem foreign to us.Read Luke 15:8-10. Here, Jesus offers us a parable about a woman who has lost one of her ten coins. On the surface, it seems this story is easily understood. Who hasn't lost a coin before? But when we see the lengths to which this woman goes to secure her missing change, we begin to see there must be more going on.
Jesus told this story to illustrate just how valuable we are to God the Father.
In Jesus' day, a woman who was engaged to be married would wear a semdi, a headdress that contained ten valuable coins. It was a way of telling the whole world she was off the market. To lose one of the ten coins that made up her special engagement headdress was not at all like you or me losing a quarter. How embarrassing it would have been for her if her betrothed had shown up and her semdi were missing one of the coins! It would be like an engaged woman today losing the valuable center-stone diamond in the ring her fiancé gave her as a sign of his love and his intention to marry her. She would do anything to find it.
Jesus told this story to illustrate just how valuable we are to God the Father—and to what lengths He will go to seek out every one of us. But there is a detail in this parable that many people overlook. Unlike the lost sheep Jesus described moments before (15:4-7), this coin is missing right at home.
There are many people sitting in the pews of churches around the world who think that just because they're in church, they're not lost. The Truth is being a part of a small group Bible study won't save you and going to church won't save you. Without Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you will be just as lost "at home" in the church as others are out in the world.
Once again, Jesus ends His parable with a celebration: "I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents" (v. 10). It's not too late to be part of the celebration.
Prayer: Father, thank You for the extraordinary lengths to which You went to rescue me. Help me to cherish You and to dwell in Your presence. May I not lose sight of You. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
"I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents" (Luke 15:10).