Reflection on the Gospel of Lk 15:1-10
November 05, 2020
The powerful preaching of the Word by Jesus was amplified that even tax collectors and sinners draw near to Him hanging onto every word he uttered. Displeased with what they saw, the Pharisees and Scribes, who felt righteous and entitled to listen to Jesus, complained, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” So, to them, Jesus addressed this parable “What man among you having a hundred sheep and losing one of them, would not leave the ninety- nine in the desert and go after the lost one until he finds it? And when he does find it, he sets it on his shoulders with great joy and, upon his arrival home, he calls together his friends and neighbors and says to them,” Rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep. I tell you, in just the same way there will be more joy in heaven over one who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who do not need repentance.
He illustrated further his point in another story, “Or what women having ten coins and losing one would not light a lamp and sweep the house, searching carefully until she finds it? And when she finds it, she shall call together her friends and neighbors and say to them,” Rejoice with me because I have found the coin that I lost. In just the same way, I tell you there will be great rejoicing among the angels of God over one sinner who repents.
Both parables depict the essence of seeking those who are lost and the great rejoicing in heaven even if just one is repentant and finds one way back to God. Jesus reached out to those who are lost and sinners. No wonder inspite of the antagonistic manner and trap of the Pharisees and Scribes to catch Jesus of something to accuse him, he accepted the invitation to eat a meal with them taking advantage of these occasions to teach them but to no avail because their hearts are hardened of feeling righteous and blinded of their own so-called” holiness”.
In this gospel text, there are two groups of people “LISTENING” to Jesus, the TAX COLLECTORS and SINNERS, and the PHARISEES and SCRIBES. The first group (Tax Collectors & Sinners) were drawing close to Jesus, maybe amazed or mesmerized by what Jesus said, took it to heart and therefore they were enlightened. Whereas, the second group (Pharisees & Scribes) were blinded by their jealousy and listened to Jesus only to catch something to accuse him. They were so sure of their righteousness that no amount of goodness reaching out to them could change their hearts. To this, Jesus heart is grieving because of their refusal to really “LISTEN TO HIM”.
Let us pray,
Lord grant us a “LISTENING HEART” ready to hear “WORDS OF WISDOM” from you. Teach us to reach out to those who are LOST, LEAST, and LAST, to lovingly embrace them and lead back to the community, the CHURCH. AMEN.