Faithlife Sermons

Tim Keller - 1 The Prodigal God - He Welcomes Sinners

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He Welcomes Sinners - Tim Keller

  • Pharisess muttering triggers the next three parables (Luke 15:1-2 )
  • These three parables show and teach us how God's grace changes us as individuals and also forms all of us into a unique kind of community
  • Parable is an extended metaphor

Luke 15:3-7 - Parable of the Lost Sheep

  • A sheep is a stupid animal.  It loses directions and is totally helpless
  • We like sheep constantly need to be rescued
  • A sheep can contribute nothing to its salvation; the shepherd had to do everything to get it home
  • Humans are utterly lost in sin, and can do nothing to fix this; God's grace has to do everything for us to save us => We need a savior
  • To invite someone to eat with you was an invitation to join together in community (Luke 15:2 )
    • Pharisees couldn't believe Jesus wanted to include tax collectors and sinners
    • Jesus was building a whole new community that the world had never seen before
    • This community in heaven that Jesus was now building on earth celebrates (joy) sinners saved by grace

What is a community?

  • A group of individuals bonded into a body through an intense common experience
  • The more intense the experience, the stronger the bond

Ephesians 2:1-10

  • When the Gospel becomes real to you and you get it, it is a life changing experience
  • Parables not only show us we are infinitely lost, but also infinitely valuable to God
  • You typical identity factors (gender, race, wealth, schooling, etc) bring you a joy that makes you feel better about yourself but often, makes you feel better/superior to those that don't have what you have.
  • When you identity and joy come from knowing that you were "Saved By Grace", you can't feel any different from anybody else, or about anybody else because everyone is the same
  • When you meet another Christian you just fit

Why you can trust Jesus to be the shepherd?

  • Passover meal always included the bread, wine, and the lamb
  • Jesus had passover with the disciples
    • Included the bread and wine on the table
    • Jesus was the lamb (helpless sheep) that died for them and for us and was with them
  • Because Jesus became a sheep to be like us and to die for us, he can be our shepherd
  • James 5:16  
    • Religiousity and morality permits no one to be a sinner. 
    • Everyone must conceal their sin from themselves and from others, but the grace of the gospel confronts us with the truth and says you are a great and desparate sinner, now come, God wants you just as you are.

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