MATTHEW 18:10-14 – PARABLE OF THE LOST SHEEP
In the bible, this section is titled as – “Yeshua warns against looking down on others.”
Do a quick self-check of yourself-
- Do you look down on others?
- Do you support others?
- Do you consider yourself a people person?
- When others are low do you comfort them/ pray with them?
With this self-check the aim is to test how you are with others, how you treat them and if really you look down on others in their times of need, or you just think you’re above them and know better – But humble yourself and allow God work on those areas and use you. Just because God uses you differently to others, or that by His favour you have achieved a lot doesn’t make it okay to look down on others. The worse thing to do when it comes to others, is to kick them when they are down and not help them. That is someone’s child here on earth- God’s special being – and so it is important to be able to look beyond your tainted view, trust issues, your past hurts etc and treat that person with love and kindness.
Someone can be down today and tomorrow be up, life is progressive and things change, never get comfortable with your current level. You are high today and tomorrow you may be low. There are stages and there are lessons, pride comes before the fall so be humble always and never boast in your own strength, it’s not you who got you there.
We live in a society where most people are consumed so much with self, getting the latest things, being known- status and all these temporary things which can’t fill any void no matter how hard they may try. It is definitely a materialistic- social media society we are in. And if one is not careful they can be consumed by all the wrong things and neglect what matters – The faith, family, friends etc.
You have to get to a point where the temporary things don’t dictate to you. But rather your focus is on what is eternal– the things above. No matter how hard you try to cover up what is internal, eventually one way or the other it’ll get exposed. So whatever that is within, take it to God and let Him work on you and heal you.
I say all this to say that how we treat others, is an indication of how we treat and value ourselves and our walk in Christ. WHAT IS YOUR PERSONAL VIEW OF YOURSELF?
For example, if I am someone who is so into my own self and shallow I will always put the things of God and knowing Him last. Will put people last too and always think of myself and what I can gain, because as far as I am concerned it’s all about me myself and I.
But if I am someone who is selfless, love God, strive to be the best I can be daily and is kind hearted and loves others. How I treat others will show in the love and compassion presented. Because I have acquired the traits from God to know and act in a way that seems pleasing to Him and can be extended to fellow believers and non believers.
Your actions show the God you serve in human form to extend love and help to others here on earth. Because you know what it’s like to be low, have nothing, be treated unfairly and not shown the respect or kind nature you felt you ought to get. So when God stepped in and healed you, you knew the importance of forgiveness and extending love and help to others in a way that reflects Christ in you. How beautiful is this?
MATTHEW 18:10-14 “Beware that you don’t look down on any of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels are always in the presence of my heavenly Father. If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them wanders away, what will he do? Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others on the hills and go out to search for the one that is lost? And if he finds it, I tell you the truth, he will rejoice over it more than over the ninety-nine that didn’t wander away! In the same way, it is not my heavenly Father’s will that even one of these little ones should perish.”
With reference to Matthew 18:10-14
It starts off with a warning, beware to not look down on any little ones – one can understand this to mean children or young people. So from young especially as God loves children, to older age whoever that you come into contact with don’t look down on them just because they are doing things or living a lifestyle you no longer live and know is wrong. You are called to be the light and salt of the world, to add flavour to dying lives and light to those in darkness, you are called to shine forth, whilst delivering the truth as led by the Holy Spirit.
So if you don’t step up to do what God has called you to do, the people you’re called to will perish. You went through all you did for a purpose and now that you are on the other side of that lifestyle - lost in the world. It’s not for you to sit on, but to share the testimony of God’s goodness and love to others who need it too hear it and be blessed by it.
Don’t be obese on the blessings and favour that you don’t extent it to others who need it too. Lead by example and as a leader in your sphere of influence give people a chance, love them, help them, pray them through, and live the right way and above all direct them back to God and make His name known. Matthew 5:16 – ‘You are the salt and light of the earth, but what good is salt if it has lost its flavour? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless.’
Moving on when we reach Matthew 18:12 ‘If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them wanders away, what will he do? Won’t he leave the ninety-nine others on the hills and go out to search for the one that is lost?’
I find this part of the scripture so profound, and this generation contradicts this scripture. Because in this generation its acted out that to make it you must have many followers and a popular status. But this scripture goes against what is acted upon in this generation. It is not about the numbers, or material things or even status. But it’s about the intention and heart. The fact that you may have many followers doesn’t mean you have made it, be humble, the fact that your voice is heard be humble, the fact that you’re called to speak be humble.
Be humble in all your ways because at the end of the day it is about the souls and in that if you see one stray, go to that person and help them get back on track, don’t think that just because it is one person, that you have enough on the other side and so they don’t matter.
NO they do matter, every soul matters, YOU MATTER, everyone needs help, everyone gets tired, discouraged, loses their way and gets consumed so much with issues that they at times may even drown out God’s word and time spent with Him. So by you ignoring them too, may just tip them over the edge if they have no one to talk to. Imagine that, leave the ninety-nine people and go after the one. The one is just as precious as the ninety-nine. So please don’t work by number, work soul by soul and let God use you mightily because in you is greatness to help many. Treat others with love and care; you don’t know what they have to battle daily.
Furthermore Matthew 18:13 goes on to say and IF he finds it, could it be that the soul that strayed away was so lost and beyond human help they slipped away?
On the flip side to that when you find that soul rejoice over it, because despite it being one soul, every soul matters and when found is a big reason to rejoice. The others didn’t stray away but because this soul was part of them, is an even bigger reason to rejoice that though they left, was found and now back. Always rejoice over the small and big accomplishments, not just the big. Because in actual fact everything the Lord does is a blessing and reason for rejoicing.
Matthew 18:14 finishes this part by saying it is not our heavenly Father’s will that even one of these little ones should perish. God doesn’t want anyone to perish He loves us all and wants us all to be saved and receive salvation. There is no one who is not important to God, He loves us all and we are His children. So don’t count yourself less than, because of circumstances or how you see yourself. Because at the end of it all how God sees you is key and all that matters.
MY EXPERIENCE PREVIOUSLY WITH A PROVIDER-
I had been with a provider for a while and felt it was time to close that account and move on. To me I thought it was going to be an easy process call in get it closed and tah tah it’s done. But to my annoyance it wasn’t that easy lol. I had to give reason why I wanted to close, pay one final payment and then call back to confirm I want to close the account- it just seemed like a long process and on top of that the customer service agent was questioning why I wanted to leave, what he could do to make me stay with them, and all sorts of long talk. In my mind I was thinking look you have soo many customers, why should it matter if I want to close account and go?
When all was said and done it hit me that just like how God cares for the one soul, these service providers (the good ones), care for each one of us and want to make sure their service to us is of good quality, so that we don’t leave them. Though they take our money for a service rendered, they are in actual fact saying that whether they have one thousand or two thousand customers your service is just as great and important to them as the other nine hundred and ninety nine customers.
This analogy came to me, with the scripture above and I just fell in love with God more, just thinking about how much He cares and loves us. Calls us by name, forgives us, counsels us, chastises us, saves us daily from unknown attacks, and guides our way and so much more. It is so beautiful to think about and know, that the Creator of Heaven and earth and all these people you see knows us by name and the number of hairs on our head. Just take a moment to reflect on this.
Hope you were all encouraged by this, keep pressing on and give your all