Luke chapter 15 - Jesus seeks the lost people

The lost sheep is sought. The lost coin is looked for. The ungrateful son who repented is welcomed back.

First published on the 19th of May 2018 — Last updated on the 26th of January 2021

This Chapter stresses Jesus as the Man who came to save sinful men.

LUKE 15:1   Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear him.

:2   And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them.

The religious leaders were horrified that Jesus mixed with sinners and ate with them.

So Jesus tells them that a shepherd will spend more time saving a lost sheep than looking after the sheep that remain in the fold (the good Jews who worship in the synagogue).

LUKE 15:3   And he spake this parable unto them, saying,

:4   What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?

:5   And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing.

:6   And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.

:7    I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.

One lost sinner causes God to expend great energy and effort in His attempts to redeem the sinner.


If a woman loses something of value then she will make a great effort to find it. How much more effort should be expended on finding a lost soul and restoring that soul to God?

LUKE 15:8   Either what woman having ten pieces of silver, if she lose one piece, doth not light a candle, and sweep the house, and seek diligently till she find it?

:9   And when she hath found it, she calleth her friends and her neighbours together, saying, Rejoice with me; for I have found the piece which I had lost.

:10   Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.

A deeper meaning sees a woman symbolize a church.

The church began in the New Testament but then lost many of the apostolic truths during the Dark Ages. Since then each church age has seen a section of the church trying to re-discover some aspects of the lost apostolic teachings. The only progress a church can make is by getting closer to the Bible truths.

Sin is unbelief in Scripture. Being restored back so that we can find the truths of the New Testament church is a cause of great celebration. It means that God is dealing with us by saving us from our unbelief.

God wants to be worshiped in Spirit and in Truth.
JOHN 4:24   God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

Our search, at the end time, is to find the revelation of God's original truths as laid out in the New Testament.


Then Luke relates the famous story of the prodigal son.

Luke invariably quotes a parable that begins with some man.

LUKE 15:11  And he said, A certain man had two sons:

:12   And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living.

:13   And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living.

He became bankrupt and then famine hit, his so-called friends forsook him, and he ended up feeding pigs and sharing the food of the pigs.


LUKE 15:17  And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father's have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!

:18   I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee,

:19   And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.

:20   And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.

His father welcomed him back and prepared a feast.


LUKE 15:23   And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:

:24   For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.

The elder brother returned and was unhappy, saying,"I have served my father faithfully and he made no such fuss over me. But when a rotten sinner that has wasted everything returns home, a big fuss is made".

LUKE 15:31   And he said unto him, Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine.

:32   It was meet that we should make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.

Jesus thus tried to explain the joy that is caused by a sinner who repents and comes to serve God.

This became a big motivational influence that launched the great missionary age.

There is a second reason for this parable: The New Testament church was the original home of Christianity. Then Christians lost the plot in the Dark Ages and fell by the wayside. Every individual Christian should decide that going back home to the original Bible faith of the apostles is the only decision that our heavenly Father really welcomes, as only those individuals will be at the Wedding Feast.


“The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.” — 1 Corinthians 16:23