LOST AND FOUND

By Roy Burner - Minister of the Gospel


INTRODUCTION

Lost and found equates to a life-giving pulsation of acceptance into the kingdom of God.  All are in a state of emptiness until the light of the Gospel shines forth with the Spirit of God bringing conviction to the wayward soul.

Scripture reveals that on the Day of Pentecost the apostle Peter with many other words did testify and exhort saying: Save yourselves from this untoward (or crooked) generation.  Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls (Acts 2:40-41).  (Comment)


Lost and Found - Course of this World

Scripture reveals: Wherein time past you walked according to the course of this world (in a lost condition), according to the prince of the power of the air (or Satan), the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience (Ephesians 2:2).

The term course signifies all the thoughts, pursuits, and deeds of this present world.  The term world refers to the world-system; its values and lifestyles that are opposed to God and hostile to Him.  One can be held in captivity to such by pleasure seeking and sinful activities flaunted before them.  Such comes through seduction, the evilness of mankind, and appeal of the flesh.

Desires of Flesh and Mind

The apostle Paul wrote:  Among who we all had our conversation (or conducted ourselves) in times past, in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others (Ephesians 2:3). 

Children of wrath refers to those subject to divine punishment; if they remain in the domination of Satan and his influence.  Many are flourishing on the ungodliness of man rather than the godliness of God.  There is a flirtation of the vilest nature served on a platter of deception being consumed by a lost generation.

There use to be the transfer of godly ways from one generation to another; but when that began to fail, the ungodliness of man became more prominent.  Man allowed such to be a part of his daily life.  There is a steady consumption through electronic devices that makes such readily available.

No Pleasure in Death of the Wicked

Scripture reveals that God's dealings are just:  Say to them, As I live saith the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked;  but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn you, turn you from your evil ways; for why will you die, O house of Israel (Ezekiel 33:11)? But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us; even when we were dead in sins, has quickened made us together with Christ (or made us alive), by grace you are (or have been) saved (Ephesians 2:4-5).

Lost and found is the very essence of these scriptures.  One may have walked in the sinfulness of man but God, in His mercy, has opened the door towards salvation of the soul; through the sacrifice of His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.  He brings one from a lost condition, that of darkness, into His marvelous light (again, the lost and found category).  Scripture reveals:  But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people (His own special people); that you should show forth (or proclaim) the praises of him who has called you, out of darkness into the marvelous light (1 Peter 2:9).

Illustration of Lost and Found

Jesus, in speaking the lost and found, spoke a parable of the lost sheep:  What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, does not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it? 

And when he has found it lays it on his shoulders rejoicing.  And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost (Luke 15:4-6).  This parable is a picture of God's ever-searching love towards the lost (or perishing).

The Lost Coin

He spoke another parable, in the lost and found category, of a lost coin, saying:  What woman having ten pieces of silver, if she lose one piece (or coin), does not light a candle, and sweep the house, and seek diligently till she finds it?  And when she has found it, she calls her friends and her neighbors together saying, Rejoice with me; for I have found the piece (or coin) which I had lost (Luke 15:8-9).

If a woman and her neighbors delight in the recovering of a solitary coin, and if a shepherd takes joy in rescuing a single sheep, how much more praiseworthy is the salvation of a soul?  Jesus brings this to the forefront in saying:  Likewise, I say to you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repents (Luke 15:10).

Hope of Reprieve

For those who feel they have gone too far into the sinful nature of man; seemingly with no hope of reprieve, there is yet another parable Jesus conveyed in the lost and found category:  A certain man had two sons: and the younger of them said to his father, Father give me the portion of goods that falls to me.  And he divided to them his living (or livelihood).

And not many days after; the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance (or possessions) with riotous living.  And when he had spent all, there rose a mighty famine in the land; and he began to be in want.  And he went, and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine.  And he would gladly have fain (or gladly) filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: for no man gave to him (Luke 15:11-16).

And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!  I will rise, and go to my father, and will say to him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before you, and am no more (or longer) worthy to be called your son: make me as one of your hired servants (Luke 15:17-19).

And he rose, 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.  And the son said to him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in your sight, and am no more worthy to be called your son.  But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand and shoes on his feet: and bring hither (or forth) the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat and be merry.  For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost and is found.  And they began to be merry (Luke 15:20-24).

This is a wonderful illustration of the lost and found category that relates to a Heavenly Father's willingness to restore the repentant in heart into the household of faith through the saving grace of His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ!

Invitation to All

Jesus extends an invitation:  Behold, I stand at the door and knock (the door of one's heart); if any man hear my voice, and open the door (only you can); I will come in to him, and will sup (or dine) with him, and he with me (Revelation 3:20).  It is an invitation that is just as viable today as when given!

If you ever look at this scene depicted in a picture; there is no door knob on the outside of the door, for it has to be opened from within.  I accepted that invitation 41 years ago and have been dining at the Master's table ever since!

The lost and found category is of a daily occurrence to the willing in heart.  When commitment is made there comes a peace; knowing you have been forgiven and cleansed from all sin, by the precious blood of Jesus Christ!  Scripture reveals:  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life (John 3:16). 

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