Now all the tax collectors and sinners were coming near to listen to him. And the Pharisees and the scribes were grumbling and saying, “This fellow welcomes sinners and eats with them.”
So he told them this parable: “Which one of you, having a hundred sheep and losing one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the one that is lost until he finds it? When he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders and rejoices. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.
“Or what woman having ten silver coins, if she loses one of them, does not light a lamp, sweep the house, and search carefully until she finds it? When she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin that I had lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” [NRSV]
What boy have ten baseball cards looses his 1915 Cracker Jack Honus Wagner card, does not search his house and bed room until he finds it and when it does find it her posts on Facebook to tell all his friends. And all his friends “Like” and comment how happy they are that he found it.
What dog breeder, who leaving ninety-nine dogs in the pen to go looking for the one who climbed under the fence and ran away. And when the breeder finds the pup, the breeder puts dog on his shoulder and carries it home with joy and celebration.
What girl having broken her grandmother’s string of pearls in her room would not sweep and vacuum up her carpet looking through the lint and trash until she finds every last one. And when she finds them all goes and tells the good news that what was lost has been found.
What stockbroker who lost their client one million dollars with a bad decision does not research and how to use the remaining 99 million to make back the one that that was lost. And when he does he is no longer afraid to call the client, but shares the good news that their account broken even that day.
What teacher, who leaving the classroom unsupervised to take the one troubled student to the school counselor comes back to the classroom and finds the students and classroom in order and on-task. That teacher rejoices and calls off the pop quiz and joy fills the class.
What politician, who leaving the 99 political party members that are in their back pocket, goes across the isles to do the right thing for the country even though the 99 are mad, threatening and hurt that he bailed on them. And all the people who elected the officials rejoiced that the people were represented over the politician’s party and popularity.
What man, having ten children, leaves at home and at work the nine who are faithful and responsible and goes into the far country to find the one that has run away. And when the father and child return that are all glad to be home together.
What mechanic, having taken apart the engine of a prized race car for cleaning and finds one custom forged bolt has been lost, does not dredge the oil pan and search the shop until he finds the part and completes the rebuild. Does he not rejoice with the others in the shop that he found the part?
What faithful church member, who having been concerned about the budget, the rules administrative council and the proper reverence of the sanctuary does not leave the guidelines behind when the needs of school children who are hunger or without warm coats; or forgets the limits of the budget and gives to send missionaries and mission teams around the world, and opens the doors of the church to show the lost that we care about them more than we care about our own. Who rejoices then?
It’s the same story through out. The parable continues to point us to see when Jesus rejoices… When the found are no longer lost and the lost are completely found.