Amazing grace how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now I’m found. I once was blind but now I see. Forward Thinkers, those words have blessed many past generations and today I declare they still have the power to bless the masses because the entire bible is one long story of God’s amazing grace redeeming us from the hands of the enemy.
Psalm 107:2 New International Version (NIV)
2 Let the redeemed of the Lord tell their story— those he redeemed from the hand of the foe,
Yes, Forward Thinkers, we have a story to tell about how the Lord redeemed us from the pits of hell.
The Bible is a book about redemption. God wants to communicate this story to us through His Word. He does this by giving us several stories that illustrate the wonderful truth of the redemption provided through His Son, Jesus Christ.
Forward Thinkers, guess what, no matter what the devil says, God is using our life stories to spread the good news of His redeeming grace. Let the redeemed of the Lord say so.
Remember last week I introduced the 5 Faces of Redemptive Grace:
1) Everyone Qualifies For Redemption
2) Jesus’ Target Audience Was The Lost
3) No One Is Perfect
4) Stone Throwing Ministry Is Unbiblical
5) God’s Grace Is Good Enough
Forward Thinkers, as much as we don’t want to, we will make mistakes. We will commit sin. We will break God’s heart again and again. We will repent, then break His heart some more.
That’s the reality as long as we are human and living in our earthly bodies. No one is perfect.
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. – Romans 3:23
Then the enemy attacks us by using our own thoughts and actions to condemn us.
We’ve all been there, feeling guilty for having sinned against God.
Feeling tired of saying sorry to Him but committing the same sins or worse over again. We beat ourselves up with negative thoughts about ourselves and those thoughts don’t line up with the will of God for our lives.
But the awesome thing about God is He forgives us if we repent wholeheartedly (and we should not use this as an excuse to willfully sin and disobey Him time and time again).
Forward Thinkers, the good news is… It’s not too late for God to work wonders through you. He is not limited by anything at all – not even our past – in accomplishing His plans for us.
Ephesians 1:7 New International Version (NIV)
7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace
Jesus shed His blood to wash away our sins and grace showed up and redeemed us from the slavery of our sins.
Forward Thinkers, let’s look at Luke Chapter 15 and see the heart, spirit, and attitude of Jesus in regards to redemption. Remember if we are Christians we are Christ-Like; therefore, the church should operate with the same heart, spirit, and attitude of Christ.
Jesus gives us His thoughts in the parable of the Lost Sheep.
15 Now the tax collectors and sinners were all gathering around to hear Jesus. 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. Doesn’t he 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.
Forward Thinkers, to put this parable in today’s dialogue Jesus is declaring All Souls Matter and No One Should Be Left Behind In Enemy Camp. Jesus is even willing to carry the weak member back home.
Jesus then continues His vision with the parable of the lost coin to remind us everyone has value in the House of God.
8 “Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins[a] and loses one. Doesn’t she 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.”
Jesus is concerned about everyone and we should be concerned about people lost in the house also.
Now let’s close with one of the most famous parables of Jesus ministry — the parable of the lost son.
Luke 15 New International Version (NIV)
The Parable of the Lost Son
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 servants 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 servants.’ 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.’”
Romans 5:10 New International Version (NIV)
10 For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life!
Pastor E. A. Deckard is the Senior Pastor/Founder of the Green House. Pastor Deckard is also the Co-Founder of the No More Blood Shed Movement. To contact Pastor Deckard for speaking engagements contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow him by downloading the Green House International Church app. through your App. Store.