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Seeking the Lost

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Jericho… as Jesus is on His way to Jerusalem He goes through Jericho. WHY?
In Verse 35 we see He is approaching Jericho (a particular path) and interacts with a blind man
In Verse 1 we see He is passing through Jericho (this is not His destination)… Jerusalem is!
The people following Him know this and are excited
Before He arrives Jesus tells them a parable to help prepare them
Jesus is getting close He has a plan, He has a path, He has a purpose!
This purpose is found in Luke 19:10
Luke 19:10 NASB95
“For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”
In light of all Jesus had in store, bringing about the Salvation of mankind, the trial, the scourging, the cross, the resurrection...
Jesus was always “seeking the LOST” in order to save them!”

Seeking Those Desiring to See

In our passages today we see two men who desire to see Jesus yet are hindered… the blind man and Zacchaeus.
The Blind Man
We see real quick his obvious hindrance… his sight!
We also see the crowds try to hinder this man coming to Christ… Luke 18:38-39
Luke 18:38–39 NASB95
And he called out, saying, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Those who led the way were sternly telling him to be quiet; but he kept crying out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”
Why is it that we can get the idea that Jesus is not interested in the “least of these” (sick, outcast, poor, children… sinners, tax collectors)???
He cries out even more!!! What faith! And Jesus seeks Him out!
What a place God can bring one to that they desperately see their NEED for Him even though blind.
I love Verse 41… “I want to see!
“Receive your sight”…SEE! And it was Immediate!
Zacchaeus
We see this outcast, a Chief Tax Collector (rich)… Chief sinner in the eyes of the people.
Remember what Jesus stated last week about the rich entering the Kingdom of Heaven?
Look at the desperation of this man to see Jesus… Luke 19:3-4
Luke 19:3–4 NASB95
Zaccheus was trying to see who Jesus was, and was unable because of the crowd, for he was small in stature. So he ran on ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree in order to see Him, for He was about to pass through that way.
Short yes, but were the crowds helping or hindering?
Don’t become so excited with Jesus, your own personal relationship that you push others out.
No doubt this crowd would not go out of their way to let him see Jesus. On the contrary… they would snub him out, push him back. Jesus has no time or interest in a sinner like you.
Pride aside, this rich well to do man stoops to climbing a tree in order to see Jesus!
Jesus comes right up to him!!! He was the reason He was in Jericho after all. “Seeking the Lost”!!!
I MUST” this is a divine necessity… wow what love a passion!
God does the impossible with man (rich man) and makes salvation possible!

Having Sight / Being Blind

We see this “BLIND SIGHT” in three different ones in this portion of scripture...
The Crowds
They rejoice and praise God when the blind man sees and is declared saved by faith YET...
They grumble and disapprove when Jesus declares he is going to stay with a sinner!
They see the blind receive sight, they see a sinner receive salvation and they grumble against God
Jesus shares a parable with them as well… Some will see some will remain in their darkness.
Citizens in the Parable (Jews)
Jesus tells this parable for a specific reason… Luke informs his readers why in Luke 19:11
Luke 19:11 NASB95
While they were listening to these things, Jesus went on to tell a parable, because He was near Jerusalem, and they supposed that the kingdom of God was going to appear immediately.
The citizens hear His claim to be King, yet they do not want Him to reign over them
They will even go after him sending a delegation
Worthless Slave
This slave was one who was supposed to be serving the nobleman… he was close yet as we have seen proximity does not equate relationship.
There is no relationship or knowledge of Him… LOOK Luke 19:20-23
Luke 19:20–23 NASB95
“Another came, saying, ‘Master, here is your mina, which I kept put away in a handkerchief; for I was afraid of you, because you are an exacting man; you take up what you did not lay down and reap what you did not sow.’ “He said to him, ‘By your own words I will judge you, you worthless slave. Did you know that I am an exacting man, taking up what I did not lay down and reaping what I did not sow? ‘Then why did you not put my money in the bank, and having come, I would have collected it with interest?’
This was not who the Master was… Look at how He responded to the other two… Greater reward and responsibility, giving, gracious...
YET… even if this is how the slave thought him to be… why not invest it?
The he had heard the message of the nobleman, but he did not believe… 1) He was King or that 2) He would return
He has the nerve to try and blame the Master! BLIND TO HIS OWN FAULT!
Nothing twists and deforms the soul more than a low or unworthy conception of God,” wrote Dr. A.W. Tozer

Stewardship of Seeing Truth

So what about those who have had the blinders removed and have seen the TRUTH??? For them there is a Stewardship that should occur...
STEWARDSHIP= managing of something especially: the careful and responsible management of something entrusted to one’s care (Merriam-Webster’s collegiate dictionary. (Eleventh ed.)
Our Responsibilities...
Like the blind man… Immediately he regained sight and began following Him, glorifying God
The TRUTH seen instigates PRAISE and FOLLOWER-SHIP!
Like Zaccheus… Seeing TRUTH and one’s Faith in Christ instigates a changed Life Luke 19:8-9
Luke 19:8–9 NASB95
Zaccheus stopped and said to the Lord, “Behold, Lord, half of my possessions I will give to the poor, and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will give back four times as much.” And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because he, too, is a son of Abraham.
His response of faith to the Truth made him a True son of Abraham not just a descendant!
Those who do have a relationship, who do follow Him, have responsibility while Christ is away as we wait His return… just as the slaves had a stewardship...
He gave them minas… money to do business until He returned
What has God given you? Talents, riches, materials, influence… Remember it all belongs to Him.
How are you using what He has given you?
Our Warning...
Notice when He returns there is reward for those who do well… Gracious reward in fact
Note also there is judgement when He returns… Verse 26-27
Those who do not heed the Truth suffer dyer consequences.
Our lives should glorify God as we follow Him, should be marked by a changed life! He has given so much… and you and I will be held accountable for how we use and handle what He has given. If the purpose of Christ coming was to seek and to save the lost… are we helping progress His purpose using what He has entrusted to each of us or would we be part of those who are hindering.
Is it time for you to take off the blinders and respond to the Truth?
What will your response be?
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